Friday, 6 December 2013

Meet the Gooner Family [Matt Mays, Adelaide, Australia]

Meet Matt Mays, host for my two days in sunny Adelaide. Originally from Sussex, Matt was a ball-boy for Arsenal's 2001/2002 season and is obviously besotted with The Gunners. Now in Australia after moving here last year with his Australian girlfriend, he follows his team just as passionately. Unlike many of the Gooners I've met over here so far, Matt won't miss a live game no matter what
time it is locally.

Interestingly enough, Matt writes for Australian Soccer fanzine Goal!Weekly and is even writing a pilot episode for his new TV show, a kids' television programme called Kick It! TV, which educates kids about the world game. It looks like a really promising concept, so here's hoping it makes it big some time soon.

Q. Why Arsenal? 
Big Matt
It's a bit of a cliché but it's more than just a football club. The matchdays at Highbury, full of tradition, smelling the hamburgers cooking, walking through the backstreets of North London with thousands of other Gooners. And I just love it when I meet an Arsenal fan there's already a connection. There's so much heritage with this club and we just all understand each other.

Q. Started Supporting Arsenal? 
I first started supporting Arsenal in 96 or 97. I was quite good at artwork as a kid, and I used to trace football players out of this book, I started tracing Dennis Bergkamp and just fell in love him and the team.

Q. Favourite Player? 
My favourite player was Robert Pires, he just oozed class and his movement on and off the ball looked so effortless.

Q. Favourite current Player? 
I have a soft spot for Rosicky, I just love how he passes and moves, he speeds the game up like no other player we have in our team right now. I also love Mertesacker because of his passion, he's been a rock so far this season.

Q. Favourite Arsenal moment? 
I remember celebrating with Freddie Ljungberg when he scored to beat Ipswich in 2002 - obviously we were getting close to clinching the title so there was a raucous atmosphere. You can even see me on the replays if you google the highlights.

Q. Where do you watch Arsenal in Adelaide? 
Most of the time at the Rosemont Hotel, however for the breakfast games we will usually watch at Adelaide Casino as it's the only venue open and showing live games.

Q. Emirates or Highbury? 
Highbury, but I understand and accept why we had to move. Highbury will also be the true spiritual home of Arsenal.

Q. League Prediction? 
I don't like to tempt fate but we'll finish in the top three for sure.

Q. Who will be Arsenal's player to watch for the second half of this season? 
Karim Benzema. Haha! Fingers crossed. No, seriously, there's a lot more to come from Wilshere, but it's the whole team that should be watched this season.


COYG

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