I enjoy following the national football team, and try to get to Hampden in Glasgow for each home game. I don't have the time or inclination to follow club football, so the international game - with half a dozen games a year and a party atmosphere - is perfect for a part-time fan like me.
Normally, a midweek trip to Hampden in November for a non-competitive friendly game would be a test of loyalty, and the atmosphere at friendlies is always subdued compared to competitive matches. But tomorrow's game will be different. Firstly, it is against Argentina - one of the true giants of world football, and so a once-in-a-generation chance for the likes of me to see one of the best teams in the world in the flesh.
Secondly, it is Maradona's first game in charge of Argentina. Maradona is lionised across the globe as one of the best (Argentinians would say the best!) football players ever. However in Scottish football folklore he is famed for another reason. During the run up to Argentina's 1986 World Cup win, Argentina - driven by an inspired Maradona - put England to the sword. The English were extremely sore about this, as they said Maradona's first goal was a handball:
"Was it handball?" asked the press after the game. Maradona shrugged, and grinned. "A little with the head of Maradona and a little with the hand of God," he replied. A legend was born in Scotland. I remember at the time that Argentina tops outnumbered Scotland ones on the streets. I felt then it was a little childish. It still is, but that is part of the fun.
It will be strange going to Hampden tomorrow, feeling for once as excited to see the opposition as to cheer on Scotland!
Single ticket to Campbeltown please.
8 hours ago