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The Academy

1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 You start with high hopes,
And high expectations
You see a weekly pay packet of umpteen thousands
In a few years time.
Own house, house for your mum,
Fast cars, and faster women.

2 Leave a comment on verse 2 0 You’ve been spotted and scouted.
You’ve joined a Premier League Academy.
Sixth form and college, with football.
You learn a trade or profession,
You learn about football.
Its skills and its pratfalls.
How to read a payslip, how to save money,
How to handle the media,
How to get a leec…….. sorry, agent
How to understand a contract.

3 Leave a comment on verse 3 0 You work hard, on the pitch and at college.
End of year one.
OK – move into year two,
And you’re getting better, the skills are there.
The inter academy games are good, and you do well.
Your studies are also doing very well, and you’re getting top grades.
Good enough for university.

4 Leave a comment on verse 4 0 End of year two
Move into year three, and the dream is getting closer.
You captain a few games – showing “great potential”
And “The Gaffer” watches you play.
Life is good.
End of year three, and you get the call.
The Academy Director sends for you.
(Four o’clock on a Friday afternoon)
“I’m there” you think
“Sorry son, we’re having to let you go,
you didn’t quite make the final cut”

5 Leave a comment on verse 5 0 And that’s it.
Dropped after three years hard graft.
You and a dozen others – a major cull.
Scrapped on the threshold of a dream.
Bubbles burst in their thousands.
Ego falling, along with your shattered dreams.
Now what?
University (still an option),
or a league one club, and work your way up.
How will you repair the dream?

11

Notes

Thanks to Joe Reid’s “Young Reject” for the inspiration.

It happens
I’ve seen the sadness on these boys faces – it hurts,
and they are cast adrift at such short notice.

Source: http://footballpoets.org/poems/the-academy/