(With due apologies to Rudyard Kipling - and to Bill Shankly)
Oh, East is East, and West is West,
And never the twain shall meet,
Unless it is the World Cup time,
When men kick balls with feet.
There is neither East nor West,
Nor border, breed or birth,
When two teams kick-off face to face,
From different ends of earth.
Twenty-two men, all fit and strong,
And mostly slim and tall,
Go helter skelter o’er the field,
Chasing a single ball.
They push and strive and sweat and toil,
They collapse on the mat;
‘Tis not about just life or death,
But so much more than that.