Collingwood

A Love Story

Paul Daley
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Collingwood
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Collingwood

A Love Story

Paul Daley
A multi-generational saga of football, love, war, forgiveness and identity.
A multi-generational saga of football, love, war, forgiveness and, most critically, identityEvery year when Collingwood plays Essendon in the AFL's annual Anzac Day match, Collingwood president Eddie McGuire carries an old horseshoe into the team's changing rooms and passes it around. The players examine it as he relates the great footy club story behind it. It's early in the twentieth century and Doc Seddon, a Collingwood player, introduces his childhood sweetheart, Louie, to his dashing team mate, Paddy Rowan. Paddy sweeps Louie off her feet and they marry. But war intervenes. Doc and Paddy go off to fight, leaving Louie to raise Paddy's baby. When Paddy is killed, Doc promises that he will always look after Paddy's wife and child. Just before the 1917 Grand Final, he sends a horseshoe back from the Somme, where he continued to serve. It brings the Magpies luck-they win.It is a lovely story. Except…
A multi-generational saga of football, love, war, forgiveness and, most critically, identityEvery year when Collingwood plays Essendon in the AFL's annual Anzac Day match, Collingwood president Eddie McGuire carries an old horseshoe into the team's changing rooms and passes it around. The players examine it as he relates the great footy club story behind it. It's early in the twentieth century and Doc Seddon, a Collingwood player, introduces his childhood sweetheart, Louie, to his dashing team mate, Paddy Rowan. Paddy sweeps Louie off her feet and they marry. But war intervenes. Doc and Paddy go off to fight, leaving Louie to raise Paddy's baby. When Paddy is killed, Doc promises that he will always look after Paddy's wife and child. Just before the 1917 Grand Final, he sends a horseshoe back from the Somme, where he continued to serve. It brings the Magpies luck-they win.It is a lovely story. Except, of course, that fairytales didn't come true in Collingwood, the biggest slum of Melbourne. What really happened to them is a much grittier tale.

About the author

Paul Daley

Paul Daley is a Canberra author, columnist and multi-award-winning journalist. He has worked extensively overseas-including in conflict zones-and has covered national affairs for major Australian publications including The Age, The Sunday Age and The Bulletin. He is the author of the best-selling Beersheba and, most recently, Armageddon: Two men on an Anzac trail. He is married to political journalist Lenore Taylor and they have three children. He is now writing a novel. For Collingwood: A love story, Paul travelled in Doc and Paddy's footsteps on the Western Front, tracing the terrible battles in which each man fought, and stood by Paddy's gravestone on the Somme to ponder who he really was and whether his wife and his best mate really knew him at all. Against this backdrop he reveals the role that the Collingwood Football Club played in the struggling community that gave rise to it.

About Paul Daley

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