This week’s Why I Love Football comes from Wales with Swansea City supporter Abigail Davies providing her thoughts on the beautiful game.
At just 20 years-old, Abi missed out on John Toshack taking Swansea from the Fourth Division to top of the entire league in the early 80′s – yet 30 years later history would almost repeat itself.
This week Swansea City celebrated their 100th birthday, sitting second in the English Premier League – 10 years after surviving relegation to the Football Conference, and nearly going out of business. Abi was able to experience this remarkable rise, with all the joy, heartache, twists and turns along the way.
From Cimla Vs Giants Grave on a Saturday morning, to Swansea Vs Arsenal in the Premier League. Read on to learn about Abi’s incredible journey, and why she loves football.
Who do you support?
Swansea City! Their enrapturing style and mesmerising passing movements along with the united atmosphere that is felt during games, gripped me from the moment I first saw them play and my love for the club has continued to blossom ever since!
What was your first football game?
Before I started watching the Swans, I used to follow my brother’s football team on a Saturday morning/afternoon. So my first ever football match, was a mighty clash between Cimla and Giants Grave!!!
I believe my first Swansea City game was against Oxford, however I have very little recollection of this match! The fisrt game I remember remains one of the best Swansea games I have seen. It was the opening game of the 2003/04 season against Bury in which Swansea’s attacking approach saw them condemn Bury to a 4-2 defeat at The Vetch.
Best game you have seen live and why?
Over the years, the Swans have been involved in many sublime matches. Their 4-2 win over Bury in August 2003, an annihilating 7-1 victory over Bristol City and of course there have been many unforgettable Derby days, however there are two fixtures that stand prominent in my memory.
The first of which being Swans v Boston on the 22nd of August 2003. The Swans dominated proceedings and took the lead through a sweet strike from Lee Trundle, further goals from Nugent and Robinson sealed a compelling victory for the Swans in which Trundle delivered an awe-inspiring performance. As well as scoring one of the finest goals of his Swansea career, Trundle astounded everyone that night, with his astonishing footwork and trickery he made the game one of the most memorable that I have ever seen!
My other favourite Swans game was last season’s Premier League tie with Arsenal. I feel the match consisted of footballing skill and technique of the highest ilk and demonstrated all of the key attributes that epitomise Swansea City. It showed just how far the Swans as a football club have come over the past few years. To be playing such a prestigious team and outplaying them felt surreal.
Best player you’ve seen live and why?
Without a doubt, Lee Trundle. During the roller-coaster years at The Vetch Field many heroes and legends were born, and since our move to The Liberty in 2005 we have already seen many more stars born.
Amongst a long list of great players to wear The Swans shirt, Lee Trundle stands out as my all time favourite. Initially joining Swansea on a free transfer in 2003, Trundle did not waste time in making a name for himself at the Vetch. Quickly earning the respect of the North Bank he proved an instant fans favourite after finding the net in his first appearance. The Scouser developed the nickname ‘Magic Daps’ due to his mesmerising close control, great tricks and skill.
Why do you love football?
A perpetual love affair, football has always been a predominant feature in my life. From a small age I would brave the elements in order to watch the beautiful game. I have never really questioned why I love it, but I enjoy anything competitive so I guess this is one reason. For me, there is no feeling like the passion, pride and roller coaster of emotions that you experience as a football fan.
I can sit watching endless games of European football or League Two games involving sides I have no interest in! I enjoy watching potential stars of the future, different philosophies and formations of sides, as well as the different intensity levels and commitment.
A big thank you to Abi for taking the time to share her memories with us. Make sure you follow Abi on Twitter: @swanabi
On the subject of Swansea, my friend Keith Haynes has released his latest book Shine on Swansea City which is available here. Look carefully and you may see a quote from yours truly on the back cover!