Leopards versus England

It might be one of the most bizarre games I’ve been to, England versus Leopards in Portsmouth.

It was only a chance call to the Leopards’ office to ask if we had a game on the final weekend in November 1997 as there was no league fixtures due to European Championship qualifiers that led to me and Tracy ending up in Portsmouth on a Saturday evening alongside just one other fan of the Big Cats to watch my team play England.

It was a surreal experience. I’ve watched England’s football team play at Wembley around 70 times, and  few months after this trip to Pompey I was in France  for Euro 98, at the infamous Battle of Marseilles when we played Tunisia on Michael Owen’s debut. And since then I’ve covered both the England and GB national teams fairly extensively.

So it was a bit strange supporting my club team against my  national team. We did pretty well. Every call down the stretch went against Leopards, even the final score is wrong as both refs signalled a three and the table put up a two. I’m still not over it.

It was fun, though. Even if the headline was a bit harsh.


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