Watch and Play Football in Battersea Park as we toast the great game
Pitch 2 in the middle of Battersea Park
This Sunday, March 24th 2002
Kick Off 2pm
We will be playing football in Battersea Park in honour of the first ever game under FA rules, which took place in 1864 and the ball we take to the Opening Ceremony will be kicked for the first time. ANYONE is welcome, however good or bad you are, wherever you come from and whichever sex you belong to. So come on down and watch or play. If you want to play please get to the pitch 1.30pm. We are hoping to get hold of 22 old style strips but in case we don’t, please bring along a dark and a light coloured shirt with your oldest looking shorts, we’ll pick teams, however big (playing a tag substitute system) and kick off at 2pm. No rules first half and then a referee for the second! See you there. If it looks like rain… bring an umbrella!
Of course football has been played for years. The Chinese have been playing for two thousand years… and for a few hundred here in Britain, there have been marauding games down high streets, between villages and anywhere there was room for a mob and a ball.
The Football Association itself grew from a small group of players who, tired of the broken arms, endless arguments (not to mention endless pitches) drew up some rules to level the stakes. The evening of that first game, they made this toast- “Success to Football, irrespective of class and creed”. We will be adding “sex” and “talent” to the list, and generally getting right into this footballing occasion.
So the game in Battersea Park will honour the FA and mark the start of our journey to the World Cup, the very pinnacle of footballing excellence. Just grab your footballs and join in at the other end of the scale.
After all is done, football will remain.
Written by Phil Wake on Tuesday, March 19th, 2002