As a Shrewsbury fan who’s fascinated about sport in general in particular football, when I got a job for a company called RunningBall who base me at STFC matches, I was over the moon. Autistic people usually are incredibly interested in a specific topic whether it be sport, gaming, sci fi or animals just to name a few. For years growing up, I wasn’t interested in football until I was 7/8. I started to like it due to being bullied for not liking it and soon enough something I forced myself to like is now a major focus of my life. My sister picked up on this due to her knowledge as previously mentioned in post 1.
So onto the media side, on Shrewsbury home match days, I work in the media section. I feel incredibly privileged to be in this position. The last home game, Salop V Wycombe I was lucky enough to have a chat with the Wycombe gaffer, Gareth Ainsworth, Mark Clemit aka clem from the football league show and finally Mark Clattenburg, the Fifa and premier league referee!:) For a young referee such as myself, to meet him was an honour and should he ever see this, I honestly appreciated it.
So on to today’s game v Hartlepool who are struggling at the wrong end of the league. Now managed by Ronnie Moore who is a character who splits opinions due to his suspension from football for a betting scandal, they have started to show some promise and potential! Potential banana skin? Very much so!
My match day routine is very strict as I don’t like change, like many autistic people. Pre match stuff is always completed the night before with my match day equipment always being fully charged for the match. To get there for 1:45 I always like to leave at 1:30 at the very latest! I always sign in and then go and see a friend for a bit. Calms me down and takes my mind off the fact I am now stuck in here til 5! I always sit in seat 24 row N in the media box. Always have done and always will do. To the left of me is ex derby player John Barton, who is an utter gentleman!:)
On to the game, I input the live data into a little PDA who is then fed back yo HQ. Due to me only being in this job for around 6 months, mistakes still creep in unfortunately and I take them quite badly as who actually likes to make mistakes?
So arrived at the meadow at 1:45 with the brilliant news that my dad is coming out if hospital. It’s fair to say the weeks been pretty crap with not having him around at home!
Surprisingly we have made a new signing in Connor Randall. Don’t know anything about him at all but hey no, he makes the bench:) Other than that, no surprises. For once the pitch isn’t looking too great even though we have brilliantly groundsmen here. We unfortunately have a pitch that digs up easily and due to the winter effect, the pitch has taken a bit of a beating.So a 3pm kick off against a team fighting for survival and we have a brilliant home record. 3 points should be with us come 5pm!:)
So as expected the result which most people predicted came through!:) A 3 nil win but it wasn’t all that easy. The first half was incredibly even and I admire how Hartlepool came and actually attacked us, which is something not many teams actually do when they come to the meadow! 0-0 at half time and 6-6 on corners whilst Shrewsbury only had 1 more shot in the first half then their away counterparts! The 2nd half was a completely different story though. Shrewsbury took the bull by the horns and dominated the game with some fantastic football. They took the lead when Andy Mangan scored a superb solo goal! Soon after Collins played a 1-2 with Mangan which allowed Collins to smash home a brilliant goal! The 3rd and final goal came from a cross whipped in by Mickey D and Mangan glancing header made it 3-0!:) Akpa Akpro had a brilliant chance to make it 4-0 late on which he spurned.
All in all a great game of football in which Shrewsbury showed their class!!
For once my anxiety which I get from my Aspergers/autism didn’t effect me much. This is something I continue to battle and I’m sure I will always be ok with it all.
It was a great day all in all with dad coming home and salop winning convincingly. I personally believe if Hartlepool play like they did I’m the first half, they will have no issues in staying up. They did themselves proud as did the 142 travelling fans who came all the way from there. Lots of respect to those guys.
Will take a few days off from posting now, so until the next one,take care,