Alan Lavercombe
There's a game that you'll 'appen 'ave 'eard of,
Noble, ancient traditional game.
Some reckon t' were what Stonehenge were built for
And that t' rules are still more or less t' same.

But nobody knows when it started,
Least nobody's certain at all.
Some reckon that it were the very same day
Somebody invented the ball.

Well, its origins got lost in antiquity
Till an 'undred an' some odd years back
At a loony bin just outside Wigan
When security got a bit slack.

See, one Sat'day, this new warder noticed
All the inmates 'ad just ..... disappeared.
'E says to 'is mate, Sam 'If the Guv'nor finds out ..... '
Sam says 'Shut up, and deal, Never fear!'

'But if 'e finds 'em all missing an' absent 'an gone,
Bloody 'ell, 'e'll 'ave us skinned alive!'
'Don't worry.' says Sam, 'It's the same ev'ry week.
They always get back before five.'

Now, just at that moment, the Guv'nor walks in.
'Where's t' patients?' 'e did loudly remark.
Sam says 'They always sod off on a Sat'day,
I think they all go down to t' park.'

Then t' Guv'nor 'e says (all sarcastical, like)
'When you find time, now, please, lads, don't rush.
Will you get off your arses and find 'em?'
Sam says 'What? When I've got Royal Flush?'

Just then, all of t' staff chucked their 'ands in
An' decided that t' best thing to do,
Just to humour their Guv'nor, they'd pop round to t' park
An' at least try an' bring back a few.

But, to their sheer amazement an' wonder,
They found the whole lot, all together,
A sight to impress, in a state of undress,
Kickin' round this big ball made of leather.

Well, they stood an' they watched for 'alf 'our,
Even t' Guv'nor said t' were good clean fun.
Nobody got maimed, raped or murdered.
'Part from blokes kissin' blokes, no harm done.

An' t' kissin' was only when one of the lads
Kicked t' ball between t' posts into t' net
An' Sam says to t' Guv'nor 'I said not to worry,
Not one's ever buggered off yet.'

But t' Guv'nor 'e says 'This'll all 'ave to stop,
Can't just let them stroll out when they like.'
But, as soon as the patients all 'eard about this
Their Shop Steward says 'Right lads. On strike!'

Now t' patients they acted dead sane all that week
An' t' warders all got quite annoyed,
Till Sam says to t' Guv'nor 'If they keep this up
Me an' thee's goin' to be unemployed!'

'Tha's right, Sam.' says t' Guv'nor, 'I know, tell thee what
We'll let them play on, as before,
But you an' your warders, you all go an' watch 'em,
Keep an eye out, just so's we know t'score.'

So for t' next three or four Sat'days after,
'Stead of t' card school, or 'avin' a rest,
Sam an' t' warders all went off to t' park to see t' game
An' they started to take interest.

Pretty soon they got fed up just watchin',
They thought they'd like to 'ave a game too,
So they fixed up a match against t' inmates,
But t' Guv'nor says 'Sam, this won't do!'

'Who's goin' to keep an eye out on t' patients?'
'No problem.' says Sam, 'Easy done.
'Cos we know that the ones who aren't playin'
Always stand round an' watch, just for t' fun.'

So t' Guv'nor relented, says 'Play 'em next week.
If tha gets beat, tha'll all look right fools.
Just make sure there's only t' same number of them,
An' tha'd best start by learnin' all t' rules.'

Now the day of the big match was 'ere at last
And the weather 'ad turned out quite nice.
They consulted this fella called Accrington Stan
For some last minute words of advice.

Though 'e knew all of t' rules, Stanley just couldn't play,
'Cos t' poor lad 'e were practic'ly blind.
They felt sorry for t' lad, 'e did not 'ave a dad,
Least, not one 'is mother could find.

'Tha'd best come on t' field where tha can see us.' said Sam,
Tha knows t' rules best, so tha's gotten t' job.
Then, if we go wrong, just tha bash this 'ere gong,
Better still, stick this whistle in t' gob.'

So, all t' loonies an' idiots not playin' in t' match
Stood round t' edge, telling them 'ow to play,
All shoutin' an' swearin' at t' short-sighted ref,
Which is 'ow football is to this day.
The end