Port Vale’s Tom Pope – ‘Football? NHS are real heroes..’



Port Vale’s Tom Pope says he is full of admiration for the NHS and its workers as they help the country in the coronavirus crisis.

Pope is Vale’s record post-war goalscorer and so regularly described as a ‘hero’ in sporting terms.

But he says the current situation is a reminder of the value of the National Health Service and its staff.

He said: “Everybody loves the football and spending the weekends watching it. But there are more important things. That’s especially the hospitals, it is a very critical time for them. I am sure they are being overworked and underpaid.

“I have always said, people on the frontline don’t get paid enough. NHS workers, paramedics, these people are saving lives on a regular basis.”

The 34 year says football just won’t be a priority for many people right now, particularly those worried about their jobs.

He said: “It is a difficult situation for everybody, even people who are getting 80 per cent of their wages. That twenty percent less might go towards their food shopping for the month. Most households live by their means. So, to get less is really challenging times for people.

“But I do think when people are struggling, and in times of worry, that’s when the country unites. I am just hoping everyone sticks by the rules.”

As for the national game, the striker says he is concerned for the future of some lower division clubs and hopes more money can be filtered down from the Premier League to help support the lower divisions.

He said: “I know it is not essential in the current climate. But football is a major part of people’s lives. We have seen the likes of Southend, Bury and Macclesfield struggle, so really the FA should be doing everything they can to ensure these clubs maintain the football side of their business.”

The EFL and Premier League suspended the season on March 13 and are waiting to see when football can resume.

*Drop a heart on our special map of gratitude to show your support for our NHS heroeshttps://www.thanksamillionnhs.co.uk/





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