Whether at Barcelona or Barrow, there can be few greater collective feelings than belting out your team’s personal anthems.

It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but the best in football chanting in this country reflects both the humour and rawness of our towns and terraces.

Songs and chants matter, whether singing your heroes to cup glory against Brentford or Bristol Rovers or showing defiance when you’re about to be relegated at Cambridge.

For Barrow, there were times when Daz and Dave were indeed ‘the love of my life’, and Colin Cowperthwaite’s ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ still topped the Christmas chant chart at Solihull in 2019.

Anyone at Burton in 2008 would remember the sheer volume of ‘Ooooo Barrow AFC’.

Songs give vent to great collective emotion. The joyful end to the Salford game last season transformed Holker Street.

Vocal solidarity off the pitch, despite the team, somehow dragged them over the line when the relegation door was wide open in April 2018.

They are often a strange mix of original thinking and clever adaptation. ‘Gimme Mo Fofana’ to the tune of ‘Hope Joanna’ was more fun singing than the performances really warranted.

‘I’m in Love with Jack Hindle’ rips off Kasabian to good effect. At Wrexham, when our Welsh hosts had the temerity to loudly suggest some of the away support could stand to lose a few pounds, the 3-0 half-time scoreline gave us the opportunity to give it back to them both barrels (or maybe chins).

Some chants have been arrived at by strange routes. ‘All Bluebirds are Blue’, a Holker Street classic, comes from Barrow AFC fans turning round a Rangers anthem at Glen Skivington’s testimonial.

There are spontaneous one-offs. When much of the vocal support had turned down a nuptials to head for Histon, to fall 3-0 behind, ‘gone to the wedding, we should have gone to the wedding’ to the tune of Guantenemara sent a loud and clear message to the bench of our feelings.

Ian Evatt’s own ‘Last Christmas’ at Fylde was another great example, albeit a little more planned.

Our songs contain our identity, solidarity, love and cheery insult for our rivals. That’s football. And remember, nobody really thinks a particular town or county is idle, violent, likely to rob your house, prone to unplanned large families, wholly architecturally challenged or is a rural area with an unhealthy interest in its livestock. Even when it’s Morecambe.

*We’re now just five days away from the return of the Bluebirds Trust Football Tournament, sponsored by the General Burgoyne.

Sixteen teams have registered and will be competing at Pulse Soccer this Sunday for the Ambrose Cup and the Brown Barron Solicitors Shield. We thank all three sponsors for their support.

Thanks are also due to Ronan McCarthy for volunteering his time and organisation skills to pull the event together for us.

It hasn’t always been flawless – one of the (glass) trophies arriving in four pieces being a particular highlight – but Ronan has kept us on the rails and should be able to enjoy a good day on Sunday.

Running around with a clipboard looking officious certainly seems more sensible than pulling on your gloves and returning to goalkeeping for the first time in three years, which will be how I spend my Sunday.

The Trust has had a very busy summer, most notably at the ground supporting the major redevelopment work. But events like this will hopefully move back up our priority list when games get back underway.

Initiatives like the 1901 Club have been extremely successful, but it’s always nice to raise money while bringing people together and having a bit of fun.

*I remember my first day on the board at Barrow AFC feeling a little bit like starting a new school.

Would I be picked on? Ignored? I’d imagined every scenario short of Mark Hetherington stopping me on the door and taking my lunch money (which happens from time to time). Fortunately, the reality has been far from that mental image.

The new owners have really embraced the Trust Director model. Having wondered whether I might be sat in the corner with a ball to play with while the big issues are discussed, I’ve found that if anything I probably get too involved and need to find a slightly better life balance.

Th personalities and the dynamics have made for a very good balance. While Mark and Kris Wilkes have been fantastic at the ground all summer, Paul Hornby has kept everybody on the rails and made sure invoices are tracked and control is kept.

Meanwhile Tony Shearer and I like to see plans and structure before we make some decisions.

The reality is that no one of these approaches in isolation would bring success. The balance of skills and opinions has really helped this summer and should serve us well as we move forward.