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England fan Terry Matson off to his eighth World Cup

By Chloe Holmwood

A football fan from Sittingbourne who has followed England to major tournaments around the world is now preparing to jet off to Russia for the World Cup.

Terry Matson and his son Jordan, 28, will fly to Moscow tomorrow for this year’s tournament - his eighth following England.

When asked why he’s keeping up the tradition, the 57-year-old bricklayer said: “It’s the biggest staged sporting event on the planet.

Terry Matson, left, and his son Jordan
Terry Matson, left, and his son Jordan

“I always follow England, it’s also something to look forward to every four years if they qualify, and it can take you to some amazing places all over the world.”

The dad-of-one’s World Cup travels with England began with a trip to Spain for the 1982 finals.

“It was all down to my parents really,” Terry said.

“They said I could have a party in Sittingbourne for my 21st or they would pay for me to watch the World Cup in Spain, and I went for the World Cup.

“I will never forget that. It was fantastic.

“I made the right decision and then it’s just gone on from there.”

Terry at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico - his second taste of following England at a World Cup
Terry at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico - his second taste of following England at a World Cup

Since then, Terry has been to tournaments in Mexico (1986), Italy (1990), Japan and South Korea (2002), Germany (2006), South Africa (2010) and Brazil (2014).

Speaking about the cost of the trips, Terry said: “People say to me all the time, ‘How can you afford to go to so many World Cups?’

“But if you can put £25 away a week, by the time the World Cup comes around you should have £4,800, and that’s not a lot to put away is it? A packet of cigarettes are a tenner.”

Terry has tickets for all England’s matches for the coming tournament, including the final, should the team progress.

He is not hopeful we will end 52 years of hurt, but that is OK, because supporting England is all about being there, he said.

“I’m really looking forward to it. I’ve never been to Russia, and that’s part of what it’s all about – venturing to a city that you’ve never been to before.”

The first England match is on Monday, against Tunisia.

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