What?

Expounding the virtues of Scottish footballing talent in an unapologetically positive fashion.

WHY?

Growing up as a proud Scot, I was always concerned by the way in which we collectively resigned ourselves to being dour for no good reason. I always felt we were better than we let on and was derided or pitied for being too aspirational or positive. Now, as an adult, father to three girls, and educator involved in the discourse of growth mindset; I'm stepping out and seeing who else is sick of the negativity surrounding our game. There are many reasons to be cheerful and buoyed by what is good in it, and this is the home for that.

That's not to say there aren't areas for improvement or aspects to be sad about and consider deeply, but I think we may have specialised in this over the years, and those that can say it very well.

I'll keep writing and sharing what I consider to be helpful, encouraging material and please feel free to engage and do the same, I would love to hear from you.

WHO?

I'm Andrew, and I'm a football fan. In particular, I'm passionate about the Scottish National Teams (SWNT & MNT) and attend home games with my daughter. You'll also catch us at our local team, although I'll enjoy and have an opinion on football in any form.

 

Once a keen amateur striker (weren't we all!), I had to stop playing football and change my lifestyle a few years ago in my early 30's, and at the moment I'm writing this from a hospital bed amidst medical things that are ongoing.

This has led to watching more football with my eldest daughter who plays for her local side. I found in sharing conversation with her, listening to observations and answering what I could, that I really enjoyed engaging in this form of dialogue, and as I couldn't play anymore, I threw myself into thinking and writing about football, as much as I can part-time as a dad of 3.

'Why is he doing that Dad?'; 'Well...'

'Why are Erin Cuthbert and Kim Little so good Dad?'; 'Erm...'
'Why do they play 4 defenders Dad?; 'Well, they don't always...'

Is Andy Robertson a defender Dad?"; 'Yes, well, sometimes....'
 

In my day-to-day working life as an inclusive educator who works with the most vulnerable in our society and further education tutor, which bases its credence upon research; I cherish the value of a good question, and my daughter asks the best questions because they are the simplest.

So there you have it, I started a website to write essays that might answer my daughter's questions.

In fact, rather than the gatekeeper of all knowledge, I had to remind myself what I have believed and practised daily as an educator for over a decade; listening well is the most important aspect of any interaction.

So often the best answer I had for her, or for anyone was; 'what do you think?'

Why are simple questions so helpful? Well, there is a mine of epistemological research available if you'd like to look at it, but simply put, I think it's because they carry honesty and sincerity which is willing to look vulnerable in order to gain a deeper understanding.

Furthermore, there is research in learning theory to suggest that only such questions can, in fact, go deep, rather than skimming the surface in breadth. Anything else isn't learning, it's regurgitating. You can have breadth without depth, but the reverse does not hold true. 'Deep calls unto deep', and so it is when a good question is asked, about anything, you see how it connects and supports other structures which form the whole above the surface. If you're thinking of a tree, then that's good, because the phrase 'grassroots football' didn't spring from the air; it had soil, lots and lots of soil. 


This is my meagre attempt at unloosing some of those hidden, interwoven roots which make up the beautiful game beneath the surface.

There won't be loads of content. It's a hobby, and like probably like you in some way, I'm busy being a dad and a husband, and a friend and a worker... so this webspace will be slow-moving, meandering through one subject, one question at a time. Together we'll explore depth, and in doing so, we'll find breadth.

Please feel free to engage! The only 'house rules' I'd ask is that if you do, please do so respectfully. This is an intentionally positive place on the internet for your mind within the realm of football, so treat others the way you'd like to be treated and we'll all get on fine!

Feel free to get in touch and thanks ever so much for dropping by.

Best,
Andrew

© 2020 by ALBA\MATTER