I have a mistress

Date: 28th June 2020

The latest blog by SFSA writer Donald Stewart:

I have a mistress.

At my age perhaps I should know better. Actually, if truth be told I have three…

Perhaps I ought to explain…

As Liverpool are dancing on the streets without social distancing after a 30 year wait for a title, I have to admit, I fell for them long ago.

Being a Scot, and a proud one who has Ayr United tattooed throughout his being, this may come as a shock… there are more to come…

I stood on the terraces, watching Stevie Nicol delight and dazzle whilst the boy from Troon wore the black and white. When he was sold to Liverpool, that became my English team. I had never had an English team before. I had never had a wee team.

I was also influenced by one of the most annoying guys in my class supporting Nottingham Forest and I still cannot take Brian Clough…

Connections were however being made on the basis of my love for my first team, my hometown team. That we were on a weekly basis watching Ayr finding life in any league difficult, it became quiet an easy transition to make. I now had two footballing loves.

And then Nicol left Liverpool…

I became less enamouredwith the Reds but the colour stayed in my affection.

With the connection gone, I looked aside, westward towards another English team.

By this time, I had searched for information about my very first Ayr United game. I discovered that when I had been but an 8 year old child and had seen Ayr for the first time – in a Texaco Cup Game against Leicester City – in 1974 at Somerset Park, there had been a star number 8 for Ayr.

Mr Ferguson had played for Ayr United before going to manage East Stirlingshire on the suggestion of the manager of Ayr – Ally MacLeod. From there he hopped to Paisley and St Mirren before ending up north at Aberdeen.

The rest as the cliché goes – is history.

From that revelation I followed Manchester United. I went through the treble, the table topping exploits of a genuinely superb team and realised that Liverpool and Manchester United were teams I could admire from different eras.

Then Sir Alex retired.

What now?

A player, a manager… what about a fan?

Step forward Mr Lee Chesterman…

Lee, a Londoner, had worked alongside me at Ayr College. He supported Ayr whilst working for the college and we saw each other at most games. I have a signed shirt upstairs in my house which he gave me when he returned home to London and his own first love – Tottenham Hotspur.

I now have three scores to look out for from the English game. I think I have enough to be going on with and whilst it may be hedging my bets… if one loses I have yet another to fall back on… or another… rarely do all three lose alongside Ayr… though it has happened.

My first serious love, however, will always be in black and white and playing out of a rickety old stadium with which I have never fallen out of love…

But more of that to come…

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