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Poetry Archives

This archive contains every poem that has been published on Football Poets. They are listed ten-per-page in reverse chronological order so the most recent poems appear first. Click or tap the arrows in the corners of the page to navigate between pages. It's easier to use the search form below to find a specific poem.

It’s finished at Sunderland

It’s finished at Sunderland
Manchester United have done all they can
But is it enough?
The players look to Ferguson, even he doesn’t know
Cos at City, there’s still two minutes to go
For all the triumphs he can recall
Today would be the sweetest of all
Not just to reward a season’s labours
But also to silence the noisy neighbours

It’s finished at Sunderland
United fans at the Stadium Of Light
Cavort in disbelief and delight
City must win to take their crown
But a minute ago they were 2-1 down
It’s another sky-blue pantomime
Two goals needed in added time
Reds laugh and sing and joke and dance
As those pathetic chokers blow their chance

It’s finished at Sunderland
In Manchester it’s doom and gloom
As City fans’ worst nightmare looms
Some broken souls already leaving
Planned celebrations replaced by grieving
How they’ll scoff and sneer and gloat and mock
At English football’s laughing stock
Our chance to end 44 years of hurt
Will end with faces in the dirt
Friends will console us, eyes full of pity
As we suck up another dose of Typical City
Billions invested by Arab States
Yet our role as losers perpetuates
A summer of hibernation awaits

It’s finished at Sunderland
We’ve got one of the two we need
But the seconds are running down at speed
Fans with ashen faces look forlorn
Dreams of glory almost gone
But the darkest hour is just before dawn…

Mario prods the ball into space
Sergio takes it on at pace
Rides a desperate tackle from Taiwo
And the noise rises to a crescendo
As with concentration absolute
He pulls his right leg back to shoot
And time…
Stands…
Still…

Everybody knows the rest
This day will always be the best
The desolation of bitter failure beckoned
But morphed into bliss in just one second
Whatever glories the future may bring
Whichever heroes’ names we sing
For everybody who was there
Nothing else will ever compare

It’s finished at Sunderland
Where to sickened reds news filters through
That Manchester, once again, is blue

Suppose they’re getting used to it by now…

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Meadowside Cup Final 1968

In kits and jeans
we’d pick two teams
by dip dip dip
and my blue ship

Although quite small I’d play in goal
hoping that we wouldn’t foul
then a trip inside the box
and big Pete rolled down his socks

Whack! a Casey fast and low
I flew and saved this great penno

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We finally did it.

We’ve done it, the lads have gone and done it
The whites are going up
The celebrations ran through the night
As if we’d won the cup
It means so much for the fans of this club
After the mess they’d been put through
The long long road to recovery
Has long been overdue

But I never thought promotion would happen
Nor even a play-off place
We were down near the bottom of the league
And ended up in the title chase
It’s been a massive team effort
And the owners should be proud
Let’s hope things return to normal
And the team can play to a crowd.

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Just Imagine?

Hakim strokes one in the net
Game on, we’re in control
Marcos/Callum, via a subtle duet?
Ensure Etihad party games on hold.

Pep ain’t best pleased, let’s be fair
T’was a nailed-on pen, I have to say
While Sterling squat on his derriere
Could have walked, the walk another day?

I sense the pressure building through it all
Watching that feeble Aguero take
How I’d Love to have been a fly on the wall
In the home team dressing room at the wake?

Just imagine; Crazy Horse,
Chopper Harris, Tommy Smith
Johnny Giles, and Big Jack, of course
Sucking oranges, chomping at the bit…

Bending Sergio Aguero’s lug-ole’s…
Bout the diabolical spot-kick missed,
Disrespecting his fellow pro’s,
Nonchalantly…trying a take the pith?

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How You Keep Your Ruins

The arboretum’s real;
I told you at the time.
We never get the people through
the checkpoints and the river police;
I told you at the time.

The inland lakes are real;
I told you at the time.
A garden by John Tradescant,
bunkers and a driving range:
helmets are advised.

The rolling pasture’s real;
I told you at the time.
Beware the fence’s electric bite
and a lady popping out ‘Just to say,
don’t sit on my stile.’
Don’t sit on, don’t sit on,
don’t sit on my stile.

The offshore island’s real;
I told you at the time.
Someone bought the mooring rights,
the woodlands and the wildlife,
and the abbot’s given in.
The Duchy gave him a pickle shop
with shares in the labelling;
That’s how you keep your ruins.

The inner courtyard’s real;
I told you at the time.
Through the doors and down the stairs,
an eye scan at the porter’s lodge,
passport and a vial of blood
and don’t exceed your time.
Don’t exceed, don’t exceed,
don’t exceed your time.

The legends’ lounge is real;
I told you at the time.
Pictures of his stylish passes,
the Brylcreem boy from Hackney marshes;
his legacy’s alive
for gold members and debentures,
Chelsea bankers and corporate sponsors;
his legacy survives –
his legacy and its industry;
his legacy’s alive.

Read the book by Martin Plumb
with photographs by Ken Coton
and a poem by Crispin Thomas.
The club won’t sell it in their shop
as ‘authors trespass on our heritage stock
for supporters on a private plot –
their revenue is ours .’

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Unsung Hero.

70% of our world is covered in aqua
As any well-read scholar knows?
The remainder? By N’Golo Kante, snapping at ya
The moment that first whistle blows!

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The Full English Final

They went thousands of miles to reach Baku,
To watch a north London derby, thanks to
Uefa’s cunning plan to spread their fame
And Azerbaijan sport-washing its name.

Less than six thousand fans in red or blue
Like Harry and Barry, Colin and Stew
Made the pilgrimage by car, train or plane
And Steady Eddie said, ‘Never again.’

Just one Englishman in the twenty-two
Who started, that’s modern football for you.
Premier League players come from every page
Of the atlas for a starring role, centre stage.

There were gaps in the stands, in defence too.
One was found by Olivier Giroud
To score the first goal, just after half time,
Leaving the Gunners with a mountain to climb

Made more hazardous by a Belgian, who
Provided one assist and then scored two.
For three minutes Iwobi gave them hope
But that sped away faster than an antelope.

It was back again by the customs queue.
When you support your team what can you do.
‘Where’s next year’s final?’ Stew was heard to ask.
Harry replied, ‘You’d best book flights to Gdansk.’

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Adios T.C. Who’s He?

Sticking it to a fading giant bereft a fight
On a rain-swept Stamford Bridge last night
The home side come to realize their class
Revenge is sweet, so the saying goes,
On a former custodian, once kept goal
Deemed now as a right snake in the grass.

Another night, shooting sights aligned
The old adage…take your bleating time,
Five or six at least might have blitzed their sodden net?
Pay-back to a, let me take a hike, or I’ll go on strike,
Sloped off to Madrid, like a tea-leaf in the night
Us paying Partisan’s, in the stands won’t let forget!

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The Poetry of Euro ’21 (Football Poets 2000-2021)

none of us can know how it will happen
no-one here is really really sure
we’re struggling now to get our heads around it
and wishing it could be just like before
but after everything that we have been through
in what has been the strangest saddest year
we may not know if we can go or be there
but suddenly a tournament draws near
so all we ask is keep your poems flowing
soon so soon the games will have begun
and may our rhymes reflect these times..it’s coming
the poetry of Euro ’21

for in the Spring in Stroud back in 2000
we poets sat outside of Mills Café
and in that courtyard round a wooden table
a plan was hatched that still remains today
where once our football words were only spoken
at gigs or when we’d meet up in some bar
with all our thoughts confined to bits of paper
the chance at last to spread our verses far
the idea seemed preposterous and crazy
perhaps we were indeed the only ones
but somehow with the help of Dave* and Stuart
the Football Poets website had begun

we launched in June when Summer brought the Euros
to Belgium and to Netherlands that year
and to our joy the poems came in numbers
from those who loved the game from far and near
and meanwhile in that hazy crazy summer
we stood or sat with eyes glued to those screens
as flags they flew on pubs and cars and buildings
we followed in our numbers with our dreams
and hopes grew strong although our group looked daunting
that golden day when when we beat Germany
only to lose out to Romania
with that despairing last gasp penalty

we drowned our sorrows barely three days later
and we all swore we’d win the thing next time (!)
when we went down to Glaston’bry for Bowie
and Coldplay made an entrance there so fine
before we knew of masks or isolation
before the kind of past year we’ve all known
before our media became so social
before we could not live without our phones
but we’re still here whichever clubs we follow
and all our words arrive here just the same
reflecting still in voices loud and booming
our love or loathing for the People’s Game
and from that fateful meeting in 2000
the friends we’ve made.. the journey on the way
we carry on regardless and remember
the plan we hatched that still remains today

and after everything that we have been through
in what has been the strangest saddest year
we may not know if we can go or be there
but suddenly a tournament draws near
so all we ask is keep your poems flowing
soon so soon the games will have begun
may all our rhymes reflect these times..it’s coming
the poetry of Euro ’21

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Memory

To meet a knight superstar
in childhood in 1985
could be something
fascinating and
obviously exciting

In the April of 1985
I met Platini
He came to Sarajevo
for the World Cup qualifier
Suddenly the match was
Spectacularly transformed
to the image of the start of a Rock concert

The floodlights failed that night
In the midst of the match
Between Yugoslavia and France

The unexpected happened
And the darkness lasted !

The feeling was indescribable…
When will the floodlights be repared ?
How many minutes will the thousands of fans
Wait for the now invisible players to reappear ?
It was settled and rescued by
The lighters and  matches of the fans

Together they  helped to make it like the introduction of
A Queen concert.

It was U2 though
Who would play there after many years

But Platini signed an autograph for me in the
Hotel Hall
It was easy in Sarajevo in 1985

Two months later
He took the penalty kick
at Heysel
That is always in
my memory

The spring of 1985
meeting Platini

The night the floodlights in the stadium in Sarajevo failed
All of us in the darkness
And two months later
Platini at Heysel
taking that penalty kick

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Source: https://footballpoets.org/poems/