Anorak News | Footballer’s Wives

Footballer’s Wives

by | 18th, February 2004

‘“WHO’S the fat bloke in the number eight shirt?” asks the Guardian cheekily.

‘But ref, I never touched ‘er!!!’

And the answer is Henry. Or Henry VIII as you probably know him.

The paper says that clothes historian Maria Hayward has discovered that England’s most-married monarch ordered a pair of football boots in 1526, and played the game with the young nobles of his royal court.

The handmade boots cost four shillings, and were ordered for Shrove Tuesday – the one day of the year when the game was traditionally played.

One day a year might sound a bit easy-going by the standards of today’s punishing fixture lists, but it should be remembered that it was a man’s game in those days, and the “physical” aspect tended to result in multiple injuries, often of a very serious nature.

Not that Henry was a hatchet man. Despite his reputation, the handmade boots show his sensitive side. One is customised with the word “Edward”, the other, “Romeo” – suggesting that other areas of history might be in need of a rewrite.’

Posted: 18th, February 2004 | In: Broadsheets Comment | TrackBack | Permalink