My brother-in-law coaches a local kiddies football team and yesterday morning he called us to ask if my little boy would fill in for a player who couldn’t make it. He has been trying to lure my boy away from rugby and onto his football team ever since he saw him play an impressive game of football a few months ago. He is forever trying to convince him that football is way better than rugby which is odd given that my BiL was a star rugby player at university.
Anyway, his football coaching seems to have become a bit of a social programme. The players are mostly from deprived backgrounds and because their parents, for one sad reason or another, have commitment issues, especially on Sunday mornings, BiL and his wife usually end up driving round the town to collect half of his team so they can play their Sunday league game. He often treats them to a Burger King lunch after the game if they’ve been good and he’s also been known to provide brand new pairs of football boots or trainers for kids who regularly turn up in less-than-practical footwear.
But if you put it to my BiL that underneath that big burly brute lies a caring and compassionate guy he will shrug it off and deny any benevelence on his part. He will simply put it down to his determination not to fail and gruffly state that he is simply thinking of his reputation with the other team coaches.
Hmm. Methinks differently.