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THE PLAYER LOWDOWN: Bright talks Sporting, Futsal + health

This feature sees us catch up with former Bromsgrove Sporting and Rovers defender Chris Bright. He talked about his days with Sporting, plus his latest football adventure and personal health crusade!

“Hello Sporting Fans! It’s been a while… I’m sure many of you reading this may not have come across me or my time at the club as it’s been just over seven years since I left, but it’s always been a club and a time of my life I remember fondly,” Chris said.

Chris, who holds the record of having played the most games of any Sporting player without ever being booked (71 appearances), reminisced about his Sporting days.

“I’ve got some amazing memories from the time I spent at the club… the first game the club ever played at the VG which ended in a 7-0 win, the run to the club’s first ever cup final and playing any game on Boxing Day at the VG was always epic.

“I’ve played for a few clubs since my days at Sporting, but nothing has lived up to the matchday atmosphere you get playing at Bromsgrove.”

Chris also has the claim to fame of being who the only player to play in the last ever competitive home game for Bromsgrove Rovers at the Victoria Ground and the first ever home game for Sporting back at the VG.

Despite the great memories he made playing 11-a-side football, it’s a different discipline of football that Chris is enjoying now.

“For a while after I played for Bromsgrove, I continued playing against them for various clubs until I found the opportunity to play Futsal (FIFA’s official 5-a-side format of Football).

“For the last couple of seasons I’ve really taken this seriously and only made 5-10 appearances in the 11-a-side game.

“It’s been a game I’ve really enjoyed, with more touches of the ball, more intensity and more action, that focuses in on your technique and tactical awareness. It was these aspects which drew me in and I never looked back.

“Almost 6 years since starting with the sport, I now have 10 international caps for Wales – an honour I didn’t expect to ever achieve when I kicked off my part-time senior Football/Futsal career as a 19-year-old stepping out with the Sporting colours on my back for the first time in 2010.

“Adding that to the fact I’m the only player to have played for Sporting and Wales (currently!) living with Type 1 Diabetes, they’re all experiences I’ll never take for granted or forget.”

Chris explained how he is keen to help other footballers with his condition.

“As I begin to approach the second half of my playing days, with a big birthday next, I’ve begun to think about how I can help others like me, which is why I started a not-for-profit organisation called The Diabetes Football Community to try and support people who live with my condition to keep playing or start Football. It’s done really well in such a short space of time!”

“I’m hoping to catch a game soon….. just as soon as we fight our way through the challenges of Coronavirus.

“Stay safe and practice social distancing. Brighty”

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