“Before I even leave for work in the morning, I make sure to spend at least 2 hours reading through football news, making sure I don’t miss anything important,” admits Damien X, a self-confessed fraudulent football fan who wishes to remain anonymous,”I usually write bullet points on the back of my hand and try while trying to remember as much as I can”.
Damien is one of an ever growing number of “football fans” who are now coming out of the woodwork to blow the whistle on the world’s biggest lie – following football and enjoying it.
“It started at 15 when I changed to a new school,” he recalled, now nervously lighting another cigarette with a previous one, “it was a boys school so I had to make sure I was up to date with all the football news at the time. I was a Liverpool supporter then, but have since changed teams twice”.
The now staunch Man United supporter believes coming out like this may help other “football fans” to generate the courage and admit they actually don’t like the game anymore.
“By the time I was 23 I was just coasting along, supporting Chelsea,” Damien went on, a lonely tear making its way down his face, “at that time I had a choice to either just stop following football and ending hours of pointless conversations about the game with my friends, or continue on with the charade, pretending to know everything about the game, but in actual fact not caring one iota – I should have gotten out when I got the chance”.
However, Damien did not want to lose his old friends, despite most of them spiralling onto even harder sports to follow, like rugby and golf.
“It’s kinda like a woman putting on their makeup every morning, a mask, but I’m 38 now and it feels like I’m wasting months of my life reading football forums and the back pages of tabloids, just so I can fit in with the lads,” he spluttered, now openly crying into his out of date Man United jersey, “I’ve literally had enough and want out”.
It is estimated that one in every four so-called football fans are only following the game to fit in with their peers, with support centre’s now being set up both here and in the UK to help men who are struggling to keep with the farce to come along anonymously and talk about their actual disdain for “the greatest game on earth”.
“Since joining the Fake Football Fans Anonymous, my life has changed and I have a place where I can be me and not some eejit waffling off whatever I read in the forum that morning,” Damien concluded.