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  1. Medium term subscriber, but not a poster. I believe I’m called a lurker. Probably covering some well-trodden ground here but felt the need to put my tuppence in (hence the title). I reckon my credentials, should they be needed, are adequate to qualify me for a little moan. I’m a 40-something long term season ticket holder, junior red and ball boy (not any more obviously) and I briefly flirted with the youth system (in a non-sinister fashion). Away matches have always been the best bits of the season as a City fan for me. There’s been some absolute belters. The camaraderie of a few hundred like minded Bedders descending on a town we may not have otherwise been to, is a joy to behold. Getting in the ground, the excitement building, as we might get to see our beloved Reds triumph away from home, irrespective of how gash we might be that year. Get up on the stand and the exchanges begin with our opponents’ fans and players. When I first started going in the 80s, football supporting was grim at times. When the 90s came around, there seemed to emerge an unwritten rule about what was acceptable and what wasn’t, and everybody stuck to it. The shouts were (quite rightly in my opinion), foul-mouthed, biting, very funny, and often spontaneous. However, in recent months, as some of you will have noticed, some of the shouts have not been acceptable, not to mention unfunny. You can see people wince as the latest volley of abuse is shouted out from behind. I honestly don't think this is down to a shift in standards, there has been a regression. For the first time, it’s been a factor in me deciding whether I would attend a certain fixture. A friend of mine who attended a game up north with me last season, signalled an intention not to go again. It's a complex issue, and its difficult to articulate what's right and wrong. But I reckon everyone deep down knows where the line is. I'm not trying to be 'woke' whatever the frig that means, nor self-righteous. I’ve seen and heard some things over the years, and I still enjoy the edge that football brings. To an extent, football supporters are afforded some wiggle room when it comes to the ‘careful what you say’ culture. But if we don’t temper things soon, then the sanitised version of football supporting that we all dread, will be quite justifiably forced upon us. So let’s just have a quick think before we shout. Appreciate the nuances of respect and tolerance, in order to maintain the edginess of following the beautiful game. And while I’m at it, leave the ‘extra-curricular’ substances at home, you can easily tell, and you look like a right ****. Come on you Reds!
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