These are the words of Alec Jackson who played for Birmingham City from 1964-67

‘You went home. No tomorrow. Football again. No tomorrow. Football again. And that was it and we lived for it. I mean the life with those players – money can’t pay for it. To become a professional footballer, it’s difficult to imagine what it’s like. I’ve told you about the supporters. They bloody treasured you. You couldn’t believe them, coming up wanting to help you. The supporters in those days weren’t supporters, they were family. There were fifty, sixty, sometimes eighty thousand come to watch you play football… And they must have been enjoying what they saw. And, by god, we on the pitch enjoyed what we were doing. So, putting it all together, all of it, them days will never come again. Because, for me, the type of football you’re watching now – 30 passes and they’ve still created nothing. But the fans in those days really made my life. There are a lot of people who still remember and I’m thankful whenever I do meet them. They say, “Can’t you remember me?” I mean, sixty or seventy thousand people, it’s hard to remember. But I still say, “Oh yeah, bloody hell, how are you keeping?” It’s nice. I’m lucky…’

This is an extract from When Footballers Were Skint by Jon Henderson / @hendojon published by Biteback Publishing and now out in paperback