Opportunity Hard Knocks

29Aug13

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The first time I played for Liverpool, over forty thousand spectators watched me miss two penalties in front of the Kop.

That was 2003, it was a half-time penalty shoot-out for charity organized by the Liverpool fanzine ‘Red All Over The Land’.

I’ve been a Liverpool fan for as long as I can remember. I’m not sure if I was three or four years old when I went to my first match. My Dad had a season ticket in the old Kemlyn Road stand. He used to lift me over the turnstile then when we got to his seat, I sat on his knee.

On the day of the penalty shoot out, just touching the famous Anfield sign and running out onto the pitch wearing the Liverpool strip was enough for me. It didn’t seem real, it felt like it wasn’t really happening and as far my penalties went, it wasn’t.

They say opportunity only knocks once but I haven’t found that to be true. In fact if you look at the names of the people who appeared on the famous TV talent show of the same name you’ll see that loads of people who went on to become successful, didn’t win. The comedian Lee Evans fills stadiums today but he didn’t even pass the audition. History is full of people who blew it the first time opportunity knocked including The Beatles. They turned up late and hung over for their audition at Decca Records on New Years Day 1962. If you listen to it, they don’t sound like they’re going to changed the world two years later. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hrw69ldm2CY

Opportunity knocked again for me the following season. I was due to take part in the The Red All Over The Land charity penalty shoot-out at half time in the game against Fulham. At the time I was presenting the Breakfast Show on 2CRFM in Bournemouth, so I asked our football pundit, AFC Bournemouth defender Stephen Purches to coach me. The coaching paid off, this time I was ready. I hit the first one into the top left hand corner, it was perfect.

The next opportunity I blew was also in Liverpool but opportunity has come knocking again. I’ll tell you more about that in the next Craic.

Craic on!

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