A brilliant exploration of the relationship between parents and children in sport, written and narrated by MATCH OF THE DAY 2 presenter Mark Chapman.
BBC sports presenter Mark Chapman is no longer in his physical prime. There is an argument to suggest he has never been in his physical prime. Now in his forties, his early forties as he is often at pains to point out, he is facing a world of knee replacements and ever-expanding waistlines, whilst his children are thriving.
There is huge pride that they are doing so well, but it is mixed with a bittersweet sadness that he will never get his own sporting heyday back. It is also mixed with a fair amount of jealousy that actually they are better than he ever was – and a large amount of sulking that they are now able to beat him at a wide range of sports.
He is passionate about sport and it has played a huge part in his life. His parents encouraged him from a very early age and he wants to pass the baton on to his son and daughters. Although there is every chance he might drop it and have a massive strop instead.
THE LOVE OF THE GAME is about the constant battle not to become the sporting pariah, the biggest baddie in the world of kids’ sport; the nightmare sporting dad. But beyond that it paints sport as a touchstone for everything importance: growing up, becoming a parent, getting old, learning how to win (and how to lose gracefully), the legacy we all hope to leave our children; in short, life and all that goes into it.