This post is not about me telling you how to follow my profoundly vain-glorious advice about writing. No, we all write and we can all learn from others.
This morning’s post results from a sports’ article reporting on an FA Cup Semi-Final at Wembley. The game took place swathed in late afternoon sunshine and was contested by my favourite team, Manchester United, and Tottenham Hotspurs (I just love that name with it Shakespearean connotations). For spring drama, this was a breeze back to the earliest days of my footballing memories. United and Spurs both stalwarts of the stylish game, both capable of turning schoolboys into followers of this eleven-a-side religion.
Now that my playing days have long-past the yard-arm of credibility, I take pleasure in writing. As I write, my beloved United have become a rather dreary version of their former-selves whilst Spurs have increased the stylish ante.
But when it comes to style, it is difficult to match the extract that I read this morning whilst crawling from my Sunday slumber:
In those moments there was something a little sad and tender about Pogba’s futile attempts to gallop back, head bobbing frantically. A little later he was outnumbered on the left, robbed and then nutmegged by Kieran Trippier, to huge raucous jeers. But he turned his afternoon around with a fine hand in the equaliser, pulling himself up to his full height and bringing to bear the full weight of that wonderfully easy talent.
First Pogba overpowered the un-overpowerable Mousa Dembélé on the left, fishing the ball out and romping away, spotting the run of Alexis Sánchez. A lovely dipping cross zoned in on the Sánchez forehead, an irresistibly fragrant, lilac-scented, rose-petal-strewn invitation to nod the ball into the net, which Sánchez accepted.Barney Ronay. The Guardian 21st April 2018
I thank Barney for that piece of sports journalism which lifts the game to the same levels that my now rose-tinted spectacles often attempt to do.