Vol. 5 Num 283 Mon. March 14, 2005  

At least he made the trip

For North Carolina-based football fan Chris Barrett, the trip to England to watch his favourite team in action was a long-cherished dream, after years of saving money.

If only the match had not been cancelled.

Barrett, a 36-year-old US school teacher, was putting a brave face on the disappointment on Saturday, saying he had enjoyed the trip nonetheless, despite not getting to see Forest Green Rovers take to the pitch.

"They have given me signed shirts and a scarf and all sorts of memorabilia. They've put me up and me and the vice-chairman are best chums now," Barrett said.

The father-of-four, who coaches football at home, became attached to lowly Forest Green Rovers, who play in England's minor, semi-professional Nationwide Con-ference league, through a computer game which lets players manage a team of their choice.