Show cover of Far Away Fan

Far Away Fan

A podcast about football fans, and their long distance love for clubs at the other end of the world. In each episode, we speak to a guest to understand how and why they ended up dedicating themselves to a football club. But most importantly what it has meant to them, and what it has brought to their lives. Get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod (https://twitter.com/FarAwayFanPod) or on Instagram @FarAwayFanPod (https://www.instagram.com/farawayfanpod/)

Tracks

25: I wanted to promote Zenit and the Russian league on the island. - David, England - FC Zenit, Russia.
David is from England. and a fan of FC Zenit, Russia. David’s interest in Russian football with a play by mail league, where he played as Torpedo Moscow. An early adopter of Twitter, how Zenit interacted with their fans on Twitter, and his early memory if of Hulk scoring a mind-blowing free-kick. He’s half English and half Mauritian, he talked to me about his inspiration to start the Twitter handle @FC Zenit Mauritius to promote the club on the island.  He’s got an interesting bunch of teams that he follows. He’s a former West Ham fan, who now supports Leyton Orient, with a soft spot for Sunderland. We went on to discuss club rivals, Spartak Moscow, and his pick for club legend Arshavin. David discussed the Russian Football watching community from across the world that follows the club religiously. Aleksandr Aleksandrovich Kokorin is a player he feels deserves a bit more praise for his time at the club. And Andrei Mostovoy is a young player he’s looking to see more of. I asked him what made him pick Leyton Orient after being disillusioned with West Ham. David’s also got a podcast called The Retro Wet Shaving Podcast with the @dyspraxicshaver  We went on to discuss Dyspraxia, a coordination disorder that David was diagnosed with last year, because of which he can is unable to drive.  He talked to me about his collecting of Kit and programs, once of which is from the 1970’s when Zenit played his hometown team of Southend United.  Do listen to Dave's wonderful response when I ask him what following the club has brought to his life. 
39:03 01/10/21
24: My grandfather was an admirer of Pele - Pedro, Detroit, USA - Santos FC, Brazil
Pedro is from Detroit, USA and a fan of Santos FC, Brazil. In 2006, Pedro had broken his foot. While stuck indoors he discovered the club through a sports encyclopedia his grandfather owned and also watched the World Cup that year, being half Italian, it all seemed to come together to set him down his footballing journey. He started his Twitter handle @SantosFC_Ingles, in part inspired by the Canary and Blue podcast. We discuss Santos’ rivals, and how each of them can be different for each supporter. Pele is Pedro’s pick for club legend. We talk about Pele’s global reach and the cultural phenomenon of Pele. We go on to discuss the popularity of the Brazilian league and the wealth of young talent. And how they have interesting homecomings later on in their careers having moved quite early on in their youth to play in Europe or Asia. Pedro talks me through his cherished collection of kits, one of which is his framed Neymar Barcelona kit. Pedro has studied at Wuhan University. He talked to me about his experience there and his interest in the football culture in that part of the world. One he asked me to check out was the Hong Kong Premier league. He’s been taking pictures in the various cities he has visited with the Santos FC kit and has an interesting story attached to it. We talked about our shared love for podcasts and how he hopes to have one on Santos soon. Do listen to Pedro's wonderful response when I ask him what following the club has brought to his life. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
59:09 31/08/21
23: “The club should mean more than the football” Samantha and Shawn, Canada - FC St Pauli, Germany.
Samantha and Shawn are from Canada and are fans of FC St Pauli. Shawn had seen a page in a sports catalog about a team he had never heard of. He was a Liverpool supporter at the time but the skull and crossbones motif made a distinct impression. Years later when he didn’t feel the connection to Liverpool anymore, he recalled the motif, looked up the club on the internet, and read about FC St Pauli and the culture and politics of the club. He started to discuss the club with his fiance Samantha, a Manchester United fan who was disillusioned by the appointment of Jose Mourinho, and they have been on this amazing journey and shared passion for FC St Pauli ever since. They have a podcast called Fell In Love With A Girl: An FC St. Pauli Podcast 7000km Removed We spoke about their trip to the stadium in Hamburg with their friend Nick Davidson who has written a book called about the club called Pirates, Punks & Politics. They talked me through the fantastic culture and fan driven ethos of the club, which you can see in the projects such as Viva Con Agua, the clean water project started by a now retired player and supported by the club. The Levi’s Music School which uses Levi’s corporate suite at the club during non-match days to provide free music lesson to kids in the district.  They shared with me a wonderful and crazy story about a pair of goalkeeper’s gloves signed by Philipp Heerwagen that you have to hear!  We went on to discuss how entertaining Bundesliga’s second division can be with it constantly shuffling week after week,   Listen to their wonderful and heartwarming response when I ask them what following the club has brought to their lives. 
88:25 31/07/21
22: Believe me, you can achieve it. Just like Leeds. Alex, Indonesia - Leeds United FC, England
He’s been a Leeds fan since the early 2000s when they reached the then UEFA CUP. He’s seen them go down and come back up after 16 years. He fell in love with Leeds in the early days when they faced teams in Europe like Real Madrid and Lazio. We talked about the impact Marcelo Bielsa has had and how Leeds is now a second team to so many. We talk about the young players in the team like Pascal Struijk and Illan Meslier.  He talked to me about how things have changed, and how Leeds is no longer a club that needs to sell their best players. He’s confident that Leeds could soon be competing with the Big 6 in the Premier League. Alex used to work as a Football Journalist for a few years, he spoke to me about his experiences during this time. We discussed his hopes for Indonesian Football and when possibly supporters could be back in the stadium. He now works as a tour guide in Indonesia and posts the most beautiful images of the Islands of Indonesia. While Alex has been affected by the pandemic, he still considers himself fortunate to still be working at this time. He explained to me the work he has been doing to help promote tourism in a few islands that were affected by the pandemic. He also has some interesting recommendations for people looking to visit Indonesia. Finally I ask Alex, what it means to him following Leeds United Football club. Visit www.AlexJourney.id or you can get in touch with him on Instagram @AlexJourney.id
33:46 30/06/21
21: The Queen of East Belfast - Morgan Day, Oklahoma, USA - Glentoran FC, Northern Ireland.
Morgan Day is from Oklahoma,USA and is a fan of Glentoran FC in Northern Ireland.  Morgan told me she doesn't really follow sports, but that that only makes this story even more unique. Morgan’s journey began on April 23rd 2020 when a Glentoran fan inadvertently tagged Morgan wishing her a ‘Happy Morgan Day’.  A bit about Morgan Day, on April 23rd 2005, Chris Morgan scored a last-gasp winner for the Glens and a title decider against arch rivals Linfield. It has since been celebrated every year by the East Belfast club. Morgan being the sport that she is, tweeted back a message of support which set the ball rolling. The tweet was picked up by the club and in Morgan’s words it just blew up. The fans welcomed her and called her ‘The Queen of East Belfast’. She spoke to me about that special day.  A special part of which was meeting Alan White, a local Glentoran fan who now lives in Oklahoma, who then offered to meet her to hand her a scarf, kit and a book about the club.  She went on to tell me about this unique relationship she now has with the club, and how her local club Energy FC got involved too.  Morgan has been adopted by the Glentoran FC family with open arms, she went on to give a “ Queen’s speech’ at Christmas! and some day soon hopes to make it to the Oval to catch a game.  Long live her reign! #MorganDay
26:55 29/05/21
20: I identify with them so much, it's a connection much more than football. - Alberto Doblaré, Zaragoza, Spain - FC Union Berlin, Germany
Alberto Doblaré is from Zaragoza, Spain and is a fan of FC Union Berlin, Germany Alberto has lived in Berlin for a few years. One day a colleague told him they should check out a game of this club in the second division. The experience was something he had was looking for in the city. He moved back to Zaragoza and promised himself to start a Twitter account in Spanish, dedicated to the team if they came to the First Division. His handle is @fcunion_es, he doesn’t just discuss football but also the history and context around it. He puts up some amazing threads and has fantastic interactions with people around the world.  He has been a lifelong Zaragosa and Barcelona Fan, but in the last few years, he felt his passion change. Union Berlin helped him reconnect with football.  He is part of a Union Berlin podcast in Spanish, with a fellow fan Julio originally from Brazil and now lives in Amsterdam. They talk about Berlin and about fan-owned clubs. He gave me a bit of the history of Union Berlin, and how they were rebels of the system in East Germany, what the club now represents and more importantly why the fans are so protective and proud of the club and its achievements.  Their historical rivals are Dynamo Berlin but today it would be RB Leipzig, both for very different reasons. Malick Sonogo is a young player Alberto is hoping to see more of. We discuss the expectations for a club like Union Berlin in the Bundesliga.  Alberto told me about his favourite matchday experiences, one in particular with Irish fans at the Euro cup is extremely heartwarming. He likes to collect football scarves, he calls them a diary, each associated with a particular memory or person.  He spoke to me about his family and how he finds it funny that his parents are now watching Union Berlin. And a very romantic story of why Berlin is so important to him. I finally ask him what being a Union Berlin fan has brought to his life and what it means to him We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram. 
45:14 28/03/21
19: You get a sense of community, that the world is not as big as you think- Richard Kharman, USA - Schalke, Germany
Richard Kharman is from Maryland, USA and a fan of Schalke, Germany. Richard happened to watch a game on TV in 2003, and was just impressed by the Schalke fans and has been following the club ever since. And a few years ago he started the SchalkeAmerica Podcast, the only English podcast for Schalke with listeners from over 100 countries. We talked about the Club legends that made Richard fall in love with the club. Huntelaar and Kolasinac, have just returned to the club in an effort to save them from relegation, we talk about the sense of community and family around Schalke. Jefferson Farfán and Lincoln are players who Richard feels deserve a lot more praise. Schalke has a history of developing young players. Ahmed Kutucu, Malick Thiaw, Timo Becker, Can Bozdoğan, Matthew Hoppe are the players Richard is looking forward to seeing more of. We talk about the popularity of the Bundesliga in America and the great job the teams are doing to reach out to the fans.  We discuss the young American players and how the league is seen as one that can help develop these players. Evan Rotundo is one he says we should watch out for in the future. We discussed Klopp’s influence, and what that has meant for other Bundesliga coaches. We also discussed his local team, DC United and Major League Soccer and how the league is growing steadily over the years. He’s also an AC Milan fan, he told me how he’s always been fascinated by all things Italian. He also hosts the Seria A Sitdown.  He has fond memories of visiting San Siro. He told how he met Clarence Seedorf in DC, not by accident. While Milan is doing well, he jokes that he likes to support clubs that give him heartache. I finally ask him what being a fan has brought to his life. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
37:56 27/02/21
18: 32 sides, 32 stories from the 2018 World Cup in Russia with Jack Wills of Heart Of Football
In this bonus episode I am joined by Jack Wills to talk about his wonderful series, 32 Sides To Every Story. Where Jack interviewed fans from each of the countries that participated in the World Cup. It's a series filled with heartwarming stories, not just of passionate fans who visited Russia to support their teams but also about their wonderful experiences along the way.  Jack spoke to me about how he came up with the idea and went about finding these fans, we talk about some of our favourites from the series and the amazing team behind Heart of Football.
18:03 20/02/21
17: I was looking for a historical club - Germán Aguirre, Argentina - Portsmouth FC, England
Germán Aguirre is from Buenos Aires, Argentina and a fan of Portsmouth FC, England. Germán is 17 years old. He was searching for a club of some historical significance and a somewhat forgotten club while playing career mode in FIFA. He got interested in the club and went on to discover more about their history. He talked to me about their rivals, Southampton and his twitter rivalry with Southampton Argentina, who has also been a guest on this podcast. I also asked him about his local club Velez, and their historical win against Milan in the Intercontinental Cup of 1994. He’s also a fan of AC Milan, Italy. We went on to talk at length about the challenges as a Far Away Fan. I asked him about his interactions with fans from Portsmouth and how they reacted to him being a fan from Argentina. He also explained to me what ‘Mush’ means in Pompey slang ?!? Finally I ask him what being a Portsmouth fan has brought to his life. He hopes to see Pompey back in the Premier League and be able to visit Portsmouth in the near future. It was such a joy to speak to a young fan discovering his love for a club. Find Germán on twitter @ArgentinaPompey We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
24:48 15/02/21
16: I always try to find the connections between Southampton and Argentina - Francisco Fourcade, Argentina - Southampton FC, England
Fransisco Fourcade is from Buenos Aires, Argentina and is a supporter of Southampton FC, England. We began by speaking about Diego Maradona and the cultural impact he had across the world, not just in football. Francisco started following Southampton for a bunch of different reasons, starting with him being the manager of a play by mail league and having to fill the slot for Southampton. As his passion for the team increased, Trevor Foy of Global Saints and journalist Sebastian Garcia (a QPR fan from Argentina, do check out his beautiful journey here) urged him to start a fan account for Southampton. So in 2014, he started the @SaintsArg Twitter account.  We went on to talk about ‘Casa Fourcade’, the store his family has owned since 1956 where Fransisco continues to work today. We discussed the history of Southampton FC. Francisco is passionate about finding the connections between Argentina and Southampton. He has a matchday program from 1956 between Southampton and San Lorenzo. He told me about the connections he has developed as well, with his friend Dex in Southampton and how he’s come to call the city his home away from home. He wants to take his mother to Southampton some day. Francisco has even been invited a couple of times to the British Embassy in Argentina. We discussed managers Ralph Hasenhüttl, Mauricio Pochettino and Marcelo Bielsa. Francisco showed me a FC Goa kit. (from my home state!) It is one of the 2000 kits he owns. We both complained about the post and customs when it comes to getting kits. He tried to explain to me the erratic nature of the Argentine league. And finally, I ask him what it has meant to him to be a Southampton fan. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
62:19 03/01/21
15: "Omuroma, it means one who supports Roma" - Kelly Keith, Uganda - A.S. Roma, Italy
Kelly Keith is from Kampala, Uganda and is a passionate AS Roma fan. Keith was a Manchester United fan because of his family. He started to watch Roma on television and liked the way they played. So he started to choose them as his team on FIFA. His passion for Roma has grown over the years as he continued to play the game. He went on to tell me about how the Italian fans and their passion are one of the many reasons he loves the team.  While we talked about the rivalries with Lazio and Juventus,  he now considers Barcelona a rival as well after the Champions League game of 2018. We had to talk about that amazing game and his experience of watching it with a group of 120 people.  From among his list of legends, he wishes he had the chance to see Francesco Totti. Danielle De Rossi, Eden Dzeko and El Shaarawy are on his list. Antonio Mirante is one of the  players he feels deserves more praise and Justin Kluivert is the young player he is hoping to see more of.  He told me a story about how he was among  a few International fans to receive a T-shirt from the club, in fact he has a set of jerseys’ enough to celebrate a ‘Roma week’. ‘Omuroma’ is his nickname, he explained to me what it means in Bantu and how it came about. Finally I ask him what it has meant to him to be a Roma fan. NOTE: We ran into some connectivity issues while recording which is why the audio quality suffered a bit, but  it clears up halfway through. Thanks for listening. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram. 
25:29 16/12/20
14: "Young kids were saying, can I take a selfie with you" - Marius Helgå, Oslo, Norway - Gimnàstic de Tarragona, Spain.
Marius Helgå is from Oslo, Norway and is a supporter of Gimnàstic de Tarragona, Spain. Marius is a union representative and plays the bass trombone in his spare time. In 2006, he was visiting Spain with a band and visited the city of Tarragona. He fell in love with the city and decided to start following the club. He runs the twitter handle @NasticNoruega. The team currently plays in the third division of Spain.  He is hoping they come back to the Segunda Division, where you can watch the games on YouTube. His club legend is the Swedish player, Tobias Grahn, and a player he feels deserved a bit more praise from his time at the club is Manolo Reina, who now plays for Mallorca. In Norway, he follows Tromsø IL. In 2015, he was holding a giant flag in some crazy weather, the camera picked up his struggle. The clip went viral and even today Marius gets recognised at games across Norway! Tromsø is the northernmost professional club in the world. Marius told me about a fascinating game from the 1997 Cup Winners Cup where Tromsø played Chelsea on a pitch that was completely covered in snow. Marius is a groundhopper, and has visited 11 countries. The most exotic he says has been his visits to Romania with Football in Heaven. Check out his blog, http://bombaball.blogspot.com/ where he documents his groundhopping. At the end of the show you will hear Marius on bass trombone playing a medley of football songs We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
35:09 28/11/20
13: They thought I was a fake account - Adrian Ochoa, Tijuana, Mexico - Kaizer Chiefs, South Africa
Adrian Ochoa is from Tijuana, Mexico and is a supporter of Kaizer Chiefs, South Africa.  The World Cup 2010 in South Africa had a huge impact on Adrian, so much so that he was supporting South Africa in the opening game versus Mexico.  He has a Twitter handle @KaizerChiefsMex where he tweets about the club is Spanish. We spoke about the World Cup, the generosity of the South African fans and why watching international football makes him so happy.  Khama Billiat is a player Adrian feels is underrated and could be the best player in Africa and Keletso Sifama is the young player he’s looking to see more of. Adrian is studying International Relations and his dream is to someday live and work in South Africa. He has a collection of jerseys from across the world (but not India, but we fixed that!) and hopes to be a part of FIFA someday. He told me a great story about watching the world cup in his school Auditorium. I asked him what his journey as a Kaizer Chiefs’ fan has brought to him, he talked about the friendships he has formed by supporting the team. We also talked about @multincha, who promotes supporter clubs from North and South America. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPodor on Instagram. 
33:07 14/11/20
A mid season trailer
A mid season trailer, listen to fans from across the globe talk about their experiences. 
02:22 20/10/20
12: Martin Devlin, Inverness, Scotland - Real Valladolid, Spain
Martin Devlin is from Inverness, Scotland and is a supporter of Real Valladolid, Spain. Marti first got to see the club when Real Valladolid came to visit his town for a pre-season friendly. He was struck by how approachable and down to earth, the players were. He started to research the club and interact with fans online and was welcomed with open arms, he started the site pucelaescocia.com for English speaking fans to be able to share his passion for the club. I asked Martin how the fan base view the new owner, the Brazillian legend Ronaldo and the long term project that he has undertaken. He spoke to me about Real Valladolid club legend, Víctor Fernández Enes Ünal is a player he feels deserves a bit for praise for his time at the club. Miguel de la Fuente is a young player he is looking to see more of. He has a brilliant story about a suitcase from his first trip to Valladolid and another one about his garden shed that you must hear. We spoke about the aspects of being a Far Away Fan, the common threads that bring us all together.  Marti shared with me stories about his father, a Real Madrid fan (who sadly passed away a few days after we recorded this episode) and his experience watching Real Madrid. He told me a story that will bring a tear to your eye, about what he calls one of the best moments of his life. The passion for football runs in this family, Martin's young son is a Spurs fan. We discussed his growing passion for football and the club. (He makes a very special cameo in this episode) We spoke at length about the friendships he’s developed through his passion for the club. He shared with me stories about his friend Carlos and the role they now play in each other’s lives. Martin is working on something really special that could get a child to be able to watch a match in the stadium and get a complete matchday experience. I asked him about his journey as a Real Valladolid fan. He told me it has been a humbling experience and a phenomenal journey. He views it as his responsibility to share the kindness that he has been shown by the people and fans and by sharing his passion for the club through all that he is doing on his website.   We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram. 
99:37 06/09/20
11: "To me it is like finding a family, a far away family" - Angelica Carrillo, Mexico - Queen Park Rangers, London
In this episode I speak to Angelica, a University Professor who teaches Film Analysis and Journalism in Mexico.  Angelica read in an interview Robert Smith of The Cure, talking about being a QPR supporter. Not knowing anything about the club at the time, she asked her father about it. "That's Alan McDonald's team," he said. With that she started to research the club and its history and began to follow them. Never thinking that she could ever watch them.  She discovered the QPR Podcast - Open all R's, which was the first time she felt very much a part of the QPR Family. Not able to watch the games, but following the club via the podcast.  She immersed herself in the history of the club and developed a deep passion for the club. Visiting London in 2017 to watch them play. Initially disappointed when the team went down to the Championship, Angelica is now happy with how competitive the league is. Her earliest memory of football is being placed in front of the TV by her mum to watch the 1986 World Cup and told me how crazy she has been about football ever since. Alan Mcdonald and Stan Bowles are her club legends. She talked to me about players Jamie Mackie, who missed out on being called a legend and how Josh Scowen, deserved a bit more praise for his time at the club. We also talked about the young players at the club, Ilias chair and Eberechi Eze. The QPR ground was always known as Loftus Road. In 2019 it was renamed The Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium. A foundation started to honor former QPR youth player Kiyan Prince, who lost his life while intervening to prevent the bullying of another boy. We discussed the renaming, the role the club has played in the community, and their support to the victims of Grenfell Tower fire. She got to experience first hand how QPR appreciate their fans, when she was invited to spend the day at the training ground. She told me all about that day and the cherished friendships she has with the QPR family. We discuss her collection of over 50 scarves, a funny story with James Walsh of Starsailor and her connection to Northern Ireland and her dream of wanting to live there one day. Angelica shares the heartwarming story of her journey as a QPR fan, having been able to find a community to belong to, being able to share her interests with a far away family and developing the most rewarding friendship. Visit FarAwayFan.com to know more. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram. 
49:28 16/08/20
10: Jamie Ralph, Galway, Ireland - Newell's Old Boys
His journey started in the most unique way. He's been a Tottenham Hotspur fan from the age of six. Jamie heard Mauricio Pochettino (then Spurs manager) in an interview say that he was ready for his first North London Derby since he had played and scored in the Clásico Rosarino for Newell’s Old Boys. That piqued Jamie’s interest. He researched the club and the derby, ultimately leading him to follow the club for close to 5 years now. He started the twitter handle @Newells_en and NewellsCarajo.com for updates on the club in English. Jamie took me through the history of the club. How they came to be called the Lepers and their rivalry with Rosario Central. He went on goes on to explain to me the campaign of the ‘Returning Hero’ in Argentine football. Messi got his start at Newell's, and has always said he will return to play for them someday. He discussed a few names that he's looking forward to seeing in the years to come and the joy of getting to watch future stars in action when you watch Argentine football.  Lisandro Martínez, now at Ajax, is the player Jamie feels deserves a bit more praise and time at Newell's. He spoke to me about his trip to Rosario, the matchday experience, Maradona and being blamed for bringing the luck of the Irish to Newell’s. We discussed former coach Marcelo Bielsa, now hailed as a hero at Leeds United, for bringing them back to the Premier League and how thousands of Leeds fans are now being introduced to Newell's because of him. Much like Jamie was through Pochettino. I got a chance to discuss with Jamie the common traits and personalities of Bielsa, Messi and Pochettino. And finally I asked Jamie what this journey has meant to him, he considers himself blessed to have made all these friendships and lucky to call himself a ‘Leper’ now. And would like to someday get the chance to thank Pochettino for introducing him to the club.
73:34 02/08/20
9: "I felt honoured" - Andrey Kazu, Jakarta, Indonesia - ACF Fiorentina
Andrey Kazu is from Jakarta, Indonesia and supports Fiorentina in Italy.  He’s been following the club since 96. He spoke to me about his journey as a Fiorentina fan.  We discussed the influence and loyalty of Gabriel Batistuta. The rivalry with Juventus and how he picked a name for his son. In 2016, Andrey visited Florence. The stadium was closed but the kindness of the staff gave him an experience of a lifetime. He’s a member of Viola Club Indonesia. We discussed the fantastic job they have done as well as the passion for football in Indonesia. I asked him what this journey has taught him. He told me it was patience.  Something I realized he has a lot of, when he told me the story of how he waited for 5 hours outside the training ground just to be able to see the players.  He also gave me some advice on why I shouldn't get a tattoo :) Thank you to Viola Club Indonesia for their help and support. 
35:14 18/07/20
8: "It means everything to me" - William Dalton, London – San Lorenzo
William Dalton is from London and has been a supporter of San Lorenzo for 7 years. He discovered the club while looking to spend some time in South America to learn Spanish, after his trip where he just immersed himself into the club and the culture, he started the twitter handle @SanLorenzoEng on his return to London. His club legend is local boy Leandro Romagnoli, William talked about why being a local boy means so much in Argentina. We discussed why loyalty from players means so much as football fans. San Lorenzo are well known for their songs. William shared a few with me and spoke about the creativity that goes into the chants and songs created by a group called  'Escuela de tablones' (School of the Terraces).  We talked about how big the Club World Cup is in South America. Where fans will take out loans, in some cases selling their cars or even quitting their jobs just to be able to travel to the games. One of the reasons Will was so drawn to the club is because much like his local club Charlton Athletic, San Lorenzo too lost their ground in the 70s. While Charlton eventually got their club back through a unique political campaign, San Lorenzo is at the moment in the midst of trying to get back to their old stadium. Part of which was a great campaign where San Lorenzo fans could buy a symbolic meter square of the ground where the stadium once stood.    Will told me fantastic stories about finding a fellow San Lorenzo fan on the streets of London, the incredible generosity of the San Lorenzo fans and his little collection of gifts and mementos from them. He says that his journey with San Lorenzo has impacted his life in a big way. It helped him learn Spanish. In what he calls the best weekend of his life, he saw them win and met Lili, who would go on to be his wife. He says following San Lorenzo has been the best decision he has ever made. We’d love to hear from you about your journey with a football club, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
53:34 28/06/20
7: Sivan John, Malaysia - Huddersfield Town
This episode features Sivan John, football writer, blogger, and part-owner of @TheBolaBolaShow. The lone Huddersfield fan from Malaysia, Sivan’s journey with the club started with a trip to reconnect with family living in Huddersfield. He spoke to me about the matchday experience and why sharing it was his Uncle was so special. He talked about club legend Andy Booth and more recently, Aaron Mooy for his impact during his stint at the club. Laurent Depoitre is one player he feels the club possibly didn't get the best out of. Chris Willock and Emile Smith Rowe, both Arsenal Academy players and currently on loan from Benfica and Arsenal respectively, are the players Sivan is looking to see more of in the coming season. He also explained to me the impact he saw with the appointment of the Cowley Brothers as managers of Huddersfield, even Marco Bielsa has praised them for the amazing job they have done. Sivan's got a signed Aaron Mooy jersey, which took a bit of a trip to get to him. He’s also got a jersey signed by Hernan Crespo, again a great story you have to hear. I also asked him what this journey of being a Far Away Fan from Malaysia has meant to him. We’d love to hear from you about your journey with a football club, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
37:24 10/06/20
6: "This scarf, is like a conversation starter" - Muhammad Sofwan Zulkepli, Malaysia - SV Werder Bremen
With the Bundesliga resuming after the COVID 19 outbreak, it seemed like the perfect time to speak to a fan of the German football league.  Wan (@wanfarlee) is from Malaysia and has been a Werder Bremen fan for 17 years. His story begins when he first saw the name at the top of the Bundesliga table in 2003, they went on to win the double that year. Call it luck, coincidence or just destiny when in 2014, his job gave him the opportunity to visit Bremen. Where the matchday experience had a huge impact on him, eventually learning to sing in german! He spoke about his club legend, Claudio Pizarro who has four stints with the club. Who continues to play and score for the club.  He spoke to me also about how as a fan he is sometimes disappointed by the dependence football now puts on stats and data when it comes to selecting a player  Philipp Bargfrede and Kevin Möhwald are the two names he picked as players who are sometimes overlooked and don't receive their due praise from fans.  Werder Bremen has a history of picking talent very early (Ozil, Kevin De Bruyne and many more), Wan believes Luc Ihorst is one such talent who is going to be a star in the future. He spoke to me about the up and downs of being a Werder Bremen fan and why is it better than being a fan of Bayern Munich.  A game that left him disappointed was against Bayern, where Bremen lost 6-0, but he saw a lot of heart in the players that day. And the game again Dortmund is one of the best Bremen matches he’s watched.  He also talks about why his Werder Bremen scarf is so important to him, and the impact it has when he meets other fans. I also ask him what this journey of being a fan has meant to him after seventeen years. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod or on Instagram.
34:31 31/05/20
5: Andrés Godø, Aalesund, Norway - Club Atlético River Plate
In this episode we speak to Andrés, a River Plate fan from Aalesund, Norway. Fascinated by Argentine football, he started to support the club after being an avid player of the video game Championship manager 99. He wasn't able to watch the games in Norway but regularly sought updates on River Plate via Google in the early days of the internet and in 2013 decided to start the twitter handle @RiverPlateNor with news and updates in english. His earliest memory is of the team that featured Javier Saviola, Pablo Aimar, Juan Pablo Sorín.  Andrés’ team legends are Andrés Nicolás D'Alessandro and Fernando Cavenaghi.  The midfielder and current captain, Leonardo Daniel Ponzio, who came in when they were relegated in 2011 and centre back Jonatan Maidana according to Andrés deserve a lot more praise for their contributions. He also spoke about manager Marcelo Gallardo’s outstanding achievement of managing to keep a team together whilst also managing to bring in the young talent of River Plate. Julián Álvarez, Nahuel Gallardo and Cristian Ferreira are the young players he’s looking forward to seeing more of.  Andrés is also a UEFA C Licensed coach, he talked about an amazing experience as assistant coach to his local team Godøy Idrettslag qualifying for the Norwegian Cup.  He owns one of the kits printed for Juan Fernando Quintero from the Copa Libertadores final 2018, you can check it out on our instagram page. We’d love to hear from you, get in touch with us on Twitter  @FarAwayFanPod  And follow us on Instagram
33:45 10/05/20
4: Giovanni Dougall, Ayr, Scotland - Parma
This episode features Giovanni Dougall @solo_parma from the seaside town of Ayr, Scotland. His story starts on a Sunday afternoon watching a seventeen year old Gianluigi Buffon, making his debut for Parma against AC Milan that featured Roberto Baggio and George Weah (the game ended in a draw). This inspired Giovanni to play as a goalkeeper. Buffon’s debut against Milan in 1995: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92zoS71E12k Over the years Parma fans have seen their fair share of turmoil but they’ve also had talent like Baggio, Zola, Cannavaro, Stoichkov, Crespo and Thuram feature for them. Giovanni’s Club Legend is Allessandro Lucarelli, who promised to stay with the club after Parma were refounded in Serie D and led them back with a record three straight promotions to return to Serie A in 2018. He also spoke about the back line of Riccardo Gagliolo, Simone Lacoponi and Bruno Alves, why their contribution is sometimes overlooked.  Yann Karamoh is a young player he’s looking to see more of in the years to come.  Giovanni reminisces about the 2006 World Cup, discusses his collection of kits and why he treasures a Lucarelli armband that the club sent him. To learn more about the club and their fans, do visit www.parmafansworldwide.com. We’d love to hear from you about your journey with a football club, get in touch with us on Twitter @FarAwayFanPod  And follow us on Instagram
28:00 20/04/20
3: Everyone remembers Baggio for that penalty miss but I remember him for so much more - Pranav Raje, Mumbai - AC Milan
In this episode we speak with Pranav, an AC Milan fan and friend of the pod.  We chat about his love for the club, but more about his passion for Italian football, Roberto Baggio and that missed penalty from the ’94 World Cup and why the Divine Ponytail was such a big influence on him.  He spoke about his club legend Paolo Maldini and the Italian art form of defensive football and why he thinks Stephan el Shaarawy was let down by the Management.  Pranav shared an interesting story from his trip to the World Cup in Russia, Mithun Chakraborthy and why Russians have good will towards India. He also had a funny story about his Agent in Italy, the acoustics at San Siro, taking his son to Stadio Olimpico and why the most beautiful stadium he’s been to is the Paljor Stadium in Gangtok. We talked about Football kits, Football books, the Berlusconi era, former and current AC Milan Rivals and keeping our fingers crossed for Milan.  Given the pandemic outbreak of Covid -19 across the World and Italy being one of the worst affected, the timing of this episode is almost symbolic. Our thoughts and prayers are with them as we dedicate this episode to Italy and their fighting spirit. 
47:51 29/03/20
2: 'That Slip' was painful to watch - Rohan Rangaswami, Mumbai - Liverpool FC
There is no better time than right now to speak to a Liverpool fan.  I had put down a lot of notes for this episode but my plans seemed to go out the window. And how could they not, given the way Liverpool’s season is progressing, you can’t help but be impressed. Rohan has been a fan since that glorious comeback in the Champions League final of 2005. https://youtu.be/3OQToElxke4 We talked about that brilliant comeback, Gerrard (of course) and other leading figures of the current season, Henderson, Trent Alexander, Van Dijk and Salah. The happiest site he's seen in Amsterdam, Anfield being on his bucket list.  We had to talk about that ‘slip’ that broke a million hearts( https://www.skysports.com/football/story-telling/11669/11689820/gerrard-the-story-of-the-slip), about his signed copy of James Milner’s “Ask a footballer” and how his wife is now an even bigger fan than he is.  If you’d like to talk to us about your journey with a football club, do get in touch with us on Twitter @farawayfanpod 
28:58 08/03/20
1: This is the team that was passed down to me - Nandan Krishnaswamy, Mumbai - Manchester United
Our very first Far Away Fan is Nandan Krishnaswamy from Mumbai. Copywriter and life long Manchester United fan, how his journey with the football club started, why Carlos Tevez and Dimitar Berbatov deserved a bit more of our praise. What he's looking forward to in the coming years. His club legend Ryan Giggs.   And also, an interesting tale of a (now cherished) Ronaldo jersey. 
17:39 19/01/20
Far Away Fan: The Throw In
We decided to go for a throw in instead of a kick off. What does it take to form a bond with a club and why would someone who has never visited the ground, suddenly find themselves week in week out watching a team from another corner of the world.
00:58 28/12/19