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Game 52: Ressel Park, Vienna

This city is incredible ! There are far too many tales to tell so I’ll leave them for the book ...but I’ve only been moved on by security once for playing footy with some punks in front of the presidential palace . Some folk have no sense of fun do they ?

Vienna is a stunning place and the whole vibe seems very laid back , positive and safe. I wandered into a park today and saw Egon Wiesinger and Nils Tavmann (Austrian) and Lukas Gorab (Brazilian) practicing their skateboard skills. I asked Nils if they fancied a game and a couple of minutes later we had a 2 v 2 right on the spot where they were boarding.

Great game. Nils and me stick the other two. For skateboarders they couldn’t half kick a footy . Nils was fiercely competitive , banging in 2 quick-fire goals . The wiry Egon, playing all the time with a fag in his hand , was having none of it , slotting in a couple of belting passes from Brazilian Lukas to draw them level.

Close game . I scored a couple, then Lukas slid in to make it 4-3 before trying to cross but booting the ball in my peculiars. Filming was temporarily halted.

It was then that the watching Magdolena Derzko and Patrycia Josefek from Poland joined us ...both impressive players. Patrycia joined the opposition and was a strong direct presence straight away . Magdolena was skilful and a great passer of the ball.

Egon stole in at the back post to draw the teams level at 4-4 ...then the ball fell to Patrycia on the left .. I closed her down but she walloped it between my legs to for the winner .

We all sat talking for ages after about stuff - the skateboarding culture in the city , the fact that Austrians can still drink cans in the park and street , as many were doing today , and Lukas’s hip-hop music label . Fantastic , vibrant young people.

To top it off , as I was about to leave I saw my mates son from home walking through the park with his pals ! Unbelievable coincidence and a magical hour in a beautiful city.

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