BBC Radio Merseyside Thought for the Day 24/1/2006
My area of Liverpool, Norris Green, has been the home of many gifted and talented people over the years, as it still is today. And these include some footballers.
Joe Royle was born in April 1949 and lived on Porchester Road. As all football fans know Joe is an Everton legend thanks to his goalscoring exploits of the late 60's and early 70's. He is now the manager of Ipswich Town.
Until recently Royle held the record as Everton's youngest post-war player - he made his debut at 16 years and 282 days and in an interview he gave about that famous day he said, "I used to have to get two buses to Everton as a player. 1 got two buses on my debut."
Now it doesn't seem very far from Norris Green to Goodison but for a youngster like Joe at the time it was still quite a journey. And it must have been quite a journey in his head, as well, standing at the bus stop thinking about the massive step in his career he was just about to take.
This little story says a tot about teenage determination and ambition. It must have taken a tot of nerve for that young man to step onto those buses that day, to step out in front of all those spectators all expecting him to achieve great things on their behalf.
Today let's spare a thought for all young people starting out on new ventures, stepping up to new challenges, and do all we can to support and encourage them.