A Ghostly Player

Gordon Bennet, played football for a living, started at fourteen playing locally and got a great recommendation from his coach for AFC Fylde when their scout came to town. Oh yeah, he’d had a few cracks about that monicker, I’m sure you can imagine if you have heard of that particular celebrity.

He’s married to a really good woman who gets the footie crack and understands how to be a footballer’s wife, even lower league because it’s not like they’re living the Premier League lifestyle. I mean, it’s still a job right, just like any other, it’s what a person gets interested in and see how far they can take it right? It sure helps that she’s a fan too!

AFC Fylde, been there for years, average footballer, great trainer, always turns up for all sessions to do with the club, some may say the epitome  of an outright professional. He’s a well liked member of the team, something that can be said for that great person in the town if anyone wants to know who’s trustworthy; salt of the Earth kind of thing.

Three years ago that all changed, but only on match-days because for the last three years Gordon has been the star striker, fans chanting his name, team mates loving the fact he’s scoring and playing so well he’s their secret (or maybe not so secret!) weapon! The coaches and manager even have him in the “pet” box, although Gordon has resisted bringing any apples!

Match-days over the last three years have become a bit special. As he’s lacing up his boots he feels the change, a warmish glow going into a fuzziness that cocoons him in his own bubble. He hears the voice of a man named Stanley but let’s not get too carried away, it is Gordon going onto the pitch and performing these absolutely brilliant feats of shooting, mixing it up, playing wide man to draw defenders out and basically giving unofficial lessons to all other players out there, opposition included and even they love him even after a thumping. For the duration of the match anyway, because when that whistle goes it seems like it’s Stanley’s time to go back to wherever he comes from and Gordon the average is back. He hears it all, takes all of it and yet cannot bring himself to utter those simple words.

“It’s not really me though…”

Those five words could allow him to share this miraculous but strange occurrence. He’s thought of telling his brilliant wife, even three years ago when it first happened. Surely she’d be right there by his side? He remembered the lean years when he’s had to work an extra job just to make ends meet and not once did she even consider him quitting! She’s there every week too, amongst the fans, in with the club because it’s all one big family really, isn’t it? And they love her just like the “star” striker they watch every week because she’s married to him. Oh yeah, she’s loyal as a good hound dog, always faithful and right there for him when he needs it! He reciprocates by being the best he can as pride is big in their relationship.

But let’s face it, could you tell your wife that you’re being taken over every match day by the dead persona of a great footballer?

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