Roger’s Game – At Last

Sunday, 13 April 2003, 0:00
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We have been in discussions with Chelsea FC for 18 months regards the game and over 100 phone calls and nearly as many faxes have gone to Stamford Bridge in attempt to get Roger this game. Thankfully after all this time Chelsea have agreed to send a side to The Vetch Field to celebrate Roger Freestone’s testimonial year. It’s strange, and proves the old one bus turning up adage, as we did have Wales lined up for a game prior to the USA International, but things went quiet on that front last week. In the sidelines were Aston Villa, and a very helpful Graham Taylor, but Roger quite rightly wanted Chelsea. Other options we can now disclose were Napoli and Paris St Germain. Both would have proved to be great crowd pullers at The Vetch, however we also had to take in to account the costs involved. Throughout the last 18 months we have spoken to every Premiership club, Celtic, Rangers and Bayern Munich, sadly many provided us with huge logistical problems to get a game sorted. Southampton came close, but like Wales went quiet when the deal was nearly done. The testimonial team have spent almost six hundred pounds in securing Roger’s events( personally not from his fund ) and JA.NET will be making an announcement after the testimonial game in May regards the year and those deserving of a JA.NET mention ……….
That should be interesting.
Of course the call now goes out to all of South Wales football fans to get themselves along to The Vetch Field on the 6th May to support Roger’s big night. There will be a few surprise guests too, and the winner of the raffle to play a 15 minute role in the game will be announced by Phil on this site on Monday. We still have plenty to do from police and stewards to many logistical considerations like catering. But we can all show our support for Roger in different ways, a player I am sure we all want to see in a Swans shirt next season. He is 34 now, and if you look at the FA Cup gameson the weekend you will see the likes of Paul Jones, Southampton 36, Alex Chamberlain, Watford, 38 and David Seaman, Arsenal 39 all playing at the top of their game. There’s plenty more for the big man to look forward to in the professional game.
For now we have four games to secure football league status in the City, and a great end to the season as Roger Freestone is showed just how much he means to South Wales football.
Phil Sumbler adds
As usual, is in there with sources and despite some not wishing to discuss this game with us, there are always plenty who are and we can exclusively reveal that the Chelsea team travelling to South Wales on May 6th will include Roberto Di Matteo, Albert Ferrera, Graham Stuart, Steve Clarke, yesterday’s Chelsea goal scorer Carlton Cole and one very famous name who is on the verge of confirming his invite.
We will also be inviting this week former Jacks Julian Alsop, Kwame Ampadu, Martin Thomas and Steve Jones to join in the fun. And as Keith mentioned, tomorrow we will be announcing the lucky winner of the Roger Freestone raffle – a reminder that the winner will get to appear in the testimonial game for 15 minutes in Roger’s place – all against Premiership opposition.

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