Friday, December 30, 2022


Pele is dead at 82.

Mexico 70 is my first hazy football memory. Dad took my younger brother Vince and I to see a game in a friend's house, as the family had a, deep breath, colour television! I have two abiding memories; the contrast between the vivacious gaudy brightness of the pitch in the sun with the sections towards the touchline in the shadow of the stadium roof. The second is being mortified with embarrassment as I was there in my pajamas. The decision or opportunity to take us must have been a last minute thing.

Truth be told, I can't clearly remember exactly what game we saw, but I imagine it would either have been the final - Brazil beat Italy 4-1 the day before my ninth birthday - or the 1-0 game in the group stages in which Brazil beat defending champions England. Either way Pele would have featured.

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