Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Steve Fletcher's signature is still a prized possession

It is not just the football clubs that are keen to get player's signatures these days. There have long been fans who have sought the hurried ink squiggle of their favourite player on their match day programme or on their team's shirt.

I for one love to get a signature of a player, as it is a special moment when you know that player is only thinking of doing something for you. It is great to see that AFCB players are only too pleased to sign something for you when you ask politely.

I remember asking Johnny Herbert to sign something for me when I met him several years ago at a go-karting event. He asked, what do you want it for? To which I was a bit knocked back. I was awe struck just to have a Formula One driver standing beside me, but I did not really know what to say in reply. Johnny thought that the first thing I would do is be off to the nearest computer where I would sell the signature on Ebay to the highest bidder. To be honest, the thought had never even occurred to me. He was simply a hero of mine. It wasn't every day that you would meet someone who had been on telly then.

But now such things are big business. A few weeks ago I was standing outside Dean Court for the Doncaster game when a couple of Saints fans came up to me holding a big book. Their team was playing away at Norwich, but rather than go there they had come down to AFCB to get the signatures of Ryan Fraser, Ryan Allsop and any other first team players that were missing from their collection. It seemed that collecting Southampton player signatures were not enough for them when there were 92 football clubs all with players signatures that could go for a pretty sum. 

I wonder are you one of the autograph hunter breed that tries to fill their match day programme with Steve Fletcher's signature for the 500th time? No doubt it is great for the Junior Cherries to acquire some signatures, but perhaps I am from the old school when I don't like to see someone only asking for a signature so that they can flog it on Ebay.

I still have Johnny Herbert's signature somewhere in the loft and no it's not for sale. But Steve Fletcher's signature is worth more to me and it has pride of place in the house.

AFCB players finish their warm up before
the Doncaster home game and
sign a few autographs - Fletch makes a late entrance.
Another signature to the collection

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