Thursday, 11 March 2010

joanna trollope on chelsea

Interview with Joanna Trollope in the Telegraph of 22 February, the best bit being the section on football:

Anyway, all of this makes it very difficult to imagine the 66-year-old grandmother – the author of such works as The Rector’s Wife, The Choir and Other People’s Children – on the terraces at Stamford Bridge, cheering on Chelsea.
But this is exactly where you will find her every other Saturday or so; a new-found passion that she has embraced with gusto. “Oh, Chelsea,” she sighs, her face flushing as if talking about a great romantic love.
“It was awful when Didier Drogba was in Africa [at the Africa Nations Cup, where one team bus was shot at]. I didn’t think he should go to Angola. Very dangerous, I thought. But he’s back now.” She allows herself a relieved sigh.
Who does she go to the football with? “Oh just by myself. It’s very well-organised nowadays. You are perfectly safe on your own. There’s a little bus that goes almost from outside my door to Stamford Bridge. I put on my beanie hat and my glasses.
The best stand for the effing and blinding is the Matthew Harding stand. I love it, these walls of men yelling filth at Michael Ballack. I don’t join in but I do rather like it going on around me. I mean, it’s terribly exciting.”
We talk at length about John Terry – “he’s very childish, but I do wish that Toni Terry hadn’t immediately taken herself off to Dubai of all places to sulk in public” – and WAG culture – “I think it will pass; there will be a moment when even the dimmest and most indulgent footballer will think 'I am being exploited by a girl whose medical history I know nothing about’” – before belatedly alighting on the subject we have come here to talk about, namely her 15th novel.