Those tears signified a love affair that still burns strong 24 years later. At that point I realised that life (and weekends in particular) would never be the same again. This football club had my heart, and despite the fact they would break it countless times over the years, I would always go back because, just like a drug addiction, the high you got from the good times were so good that you simply can't ever turn your back on them.
What Nick Horby has done in Fever Pitch is capture all of that emotion of the pain and joy that football brings, and put it down on the pages of a book and delivered it like a group of hardcore footy fans having a chat over a pint in the pub on a Saturday afternoon after the match.
You have got to be a lover of the beautiful game to truly appreciate and enjoy this book. Written in an autobiographical style, Hornby uses the backdrop of his obsession with Arsenal FC to recount his life story from an 8-year-old boy on the terraces with his father, right up until what was arguably the most exciting climax to a football season in 1989 when a last-gasp Michael Thomas goal snatched the championship title for the Gunners straight out under the noses from the team who's team name I can't say!
Everything that happens in Hornby's life - from his family to girlfriends to his education - revolves around football.Purists of the game will love this book, especially those who remember a time when money didn't rule with an iron fist, and the divide between players and fans was not as large as the astronomical sums of money they earn today.
But if you have little or no interest in football (or if you're a Spurs fan!), then you are probably best picking up another of Hornby's novels because this is going to be lost on you!