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Jimmy Seed Newspaper Articles

During my research I've come across quite a few newspaper articles written by Jimmy, and because of 'scan to text', and dictation technology it's much easier to use them as text.
I'm not sure if they'll be useful for the blog at this stage, but I thought they might be of interest to some of you who are interested in football history; so I'll post them here when I come across them.
The first is about choosing football as a profession when it might well involve taking a pay cut!
And Jimmy meets a bit of a troll on a train...


  • Football as a Profession.

     Are League Players Paid Enough?

      When I left school I went to work in a coal mine, and  I  continued  to work there  until what I looked upon as a stroke of good luck altered my whole outlook. Often, and especially after a big match, I think of and wonder at the remarkable alteration that has been brought about in my life.

      There is a time in the lives of all men when they pause to cast a backward glance over their careers.  If they feel that they have chosen the right occupation and done just as well as they would want to do if they had their time to come over again, they may count themselves more than fortunate.  

    Sometimes I wonder if I have done right in becoming a professional footballer,  and honestly, I think I have.

      It is not easy to assess the economic value of a footballer.   When I worked in the pit, I helped  to get coal. I had resigned myself to that occupation - and it is coal which keeps the wheels of industry revolving.  Then, I had a definite economic value.

    Of what value am I, or any of any colleagues for that matter, now? We are professional footballers. We do not produce anything of commercial worth. Have we any economic value at all? 

    There are times when I feel that I can hardly find justification for the career I have adopted; I play football for my living —in my earliest days I worked down the pit for my living—¬ but this is all the benefit I get out of the game. Certainly I like football immensely, but playing it professionally is work all the same. 

    Thousands of other people get something out of the game which I can never hope to have. They get  away  from the work  which  they have to face on five and a half days of each I week, and the thrills and excitement of the football match enable them to 'forget their cares and worries', and provide something of a stimulant for them.

    I find consolation in the fact that I am playing to entertain and endeavour to please the workers of the country,  and I find the same justification for my existence as the music-hall artists, and the cinema stars do. 

    Not an Easy Job.

    It is not an easy job becoming a professional footballer, even when a man has the ability and the chance. Football is alright for the man who can afford to spend years acquiring skill which has no commercial price put upon it, and who has a private income.  He can go into the game free from troubles. 

    But let that amateur footballer find himself compelled to take up the game as a living.  He sells himself to the moneyed public, and accordingly, he drops in the social scale.

    He will soon find that there is not the same joy in the game when his living depends upon his play, as there was when he could play for the love of the sport. Call football work, and then half the pleasure is gone. It is nice to play in a match for the game's sake after a hard week's work. It is very different when football is a duty.

    An amateur has not the same responsibilities as a professional. He had not the same desire for success, and I will go so far as to say that the professional plays more earnest football I than does the amateur. He has to.

    Often one hears the remark: ' I wish I was professional footballer.”   Some people look upon the life as one of the easiest and best. The professional knows that that view is quite wrong.

    Some men say: "Look at the money they get."

    Underpaid ?

    Let us look at the money they get. On an average, a clean living player who does what is right cannot save more than £1 a week all the year round, be he married or single. Statistics prove that the length of the ordinary footballer's playing career varies from eight to ten years'

    If he has saved £1 a week during that period —he must consider himself extremely fortunate if he has— he will have, say, £500 in the bank. Give him a benefit of £500, and then when he doffs his jersey for the last time he may have £1,000 with  which to  start a new career.

    This £1,000  represents the most the player can hope for under present conditions, though he may be one of the cleverest footballers in the kingdom. The amount is usually very much less.

    Honestly, I say the professional footballer is underpaid.  Our living depends upon the success we achieve in the game; but this very difficult to obtain, and once obtained it is very difficult to hold.  

    I know players who  have  given  up  the  game —some  because they could not stand the strain of the responsibility, and some because they were not fitted.

    Once a player enters professional ranks he gives up his former employment.  He should be given a wage large enough to enable him to save sufficient money to make him alright when he has to leave the game.

    A professional footballer should be paid according to his abilities.  Team work, of course is the basis of success, but there are players with outstanding ability, and these men should be paid according to their value to the club.

    The bonus system should be scrapped. I make bold to forecast that it will not be in operation next season.

    One Man's Opinion. 

    Travelling from Nottingham to Newcastle recently, I found myself in a compartment along with four other travellers. The conversation drifted on to football, and then on to the "rottenness' with which they suggested the professional game was tainted. They accused footballers of being anything but straight, and one went to the extreme saying that all footballers were crooked, and that there was not one who could not hide behind a corkscrew.

    I asked the man who made this assertion what his grounds were. His answer surprised ME, as much as it will surprise you.

    "Look at the Newcastle United v. Liverpool matches," he said. "Newcastle beat Liverpool away, and then lose to them at St. James's Park. Surely that's proof that the bookies have got at someone."

    Of course, such talk as this is very ridiculous. I mention this incident to show that there are people who are always ready to cause trouble if they can, and also to show that these people know very little ab6ut the game.

    Football is much more of a business than it once was, but it is still a very fine game, and a game, I venture to suggest, which the country could not afford to do without.

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