In late 2020 Amazon Prime Video asked me ‘to do what I do’, but focusing entirely on the Premier League fixtures.
The commission was to be in the middle of Lockdown, with football struggling, soldiering on – without crowds, the game’s lifeblood. It would take me into the homes of the fans of all twenty Premier League clubs on the run up to Christmas, tinsel in many of the pictures, at a time when the mental health of the nation was stretched to its limit.
I had never photographed armchair football, attending all 4000 matches.
The people to be photographed just sort of materialised. To complete the shoot I got some colleagues to do the houses I could not get to in the timeframe : Amy Drucquer, José, Nick, Jeff, Dan.
Would fans/families sing in their living-rooms? I wondered. Would dogs howl…
In the Lakes under stars of an open sky, as 2020 made way for 2021, Jem and Rowan watched Liverpool (then top of the League) on a laptop. The players taking the knee – we rubbed ours to keep warm, much like being at a match of auld.
Every house I went into was a shrine to family & to football, the TV always centre stage. The commission was a dream; the exhibition & book we are now delivering are proof that it really happened.