You’re not from round ‘ere: I’m delighted to see FT’s sports coverage kick off with a fine article by Dave Boyle. He’s right to be sick of the jeering insistence on authenticity which runs through so much football culture, even the more enlightened kind. Manchester United supporter from Barnstaple? Liverpool fan from Stevenage? We’ll be the judge of which communities you belong to, thanks very much.

I’ll quite often get on to talking about football with people I don’t know well: it’s a big part of my life and can be quite a handy thing-we-have-in-common. It’s often funny to watch them react to the question I get round to asking as they enthuse about their team: “Do you go?”

As often as not, those who don’t slog through the wind and the rain to inhospitable away ends in far-off places start to get intimidated and start to make excuses. I generally have to reassure them. I don’t care how often they pay at the turnstiles as long as they’ve something interesting to say. I’m generally happy that I’ve had the chance to ask them a saucy question, one which would normally earn me a slap, and kept a straight face.