On the Ball, City

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"On The Ball, City" (sometimes abbreviated 'OTBC' in writing), the Norwich City F.C. song, is described as the world's oldest football song still in use today;[1][2] the song is in fact older than the club itself having probably been penned for Norwich Teachers or Caley's FC in the 1890s, and used by clubs such as Swifians and Norwich CEYMS before being adopted by Norwich City.[2] It is sung pre-match at Carrow Road and throughout the games that Norwich City play, home and away. Although the first use of the tune and song is disputed, it had been adopted by 1902 and it remains in use today in part if not the whole.[2] Today, the original words of the first line of the section still sung by fans, is generally modified by the insertion of the word "it", following "kick" and "throw":

Lyrics[edit]

In the days to call, which we have left behind,
Our boyhood’s glorious game,
And our youthful vigour has declined
With its mirth and its lonesome end;
You will think of the time, the happy time,
Its memories fond recall
When in the bloom of your youthful prime
We’ve kept upon the ball
Kick off, throw in, have a little scrimmage,
Keep it low, a splendid rush, bravo, win or die;
On the ball, City, never mind the danger,
Steady on, now’s your chance,
Hurrah! We’ve scored a goal.
Let all tonight then drink with me
To the football game we love,
And wish it may successful be
And in one grand united toast
Join player, game and song
And fondly pledge your pride and toast
Success to the City club.
Kick off, throw in, have a little scrimmage,
Keep it low, a splendid rush, bravo, win or die;
On the ball, City, never mind the danger,
Steady on, now’s your chance,
Hurrah! We’ve scored a goal.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Club history Norwich City FC
  2. ^ a b c Eastwood, John; Mike Davage (1986). Canary Citizens. Almeida Books. p. 24. ISBN 0-7117-2020-7.