A Hollywood actor has thrown his support behind South Shields FC as they bid to reach Wembley.
Richard Short, from South Shields, has revealed he is backing the Mariners all the way ahead of their two-legged FA Vase semi-final.
The actor, 41, who is the star of new American series Mary Kills People and has appeared in shows including Vinyl and 666 Park Avenue, will wear his colours with pride tomorrow as Shields take on Coleshill Town.
Along with a picture of his Mariners shirt, he tweeted: “Be proud of where you’re from. It makes you who you are. Shirt just arrived in Hollywood!!”
Richard, who also supports Sunderland, has appeared in more than 30 films and TV shows in the USA and UK.
But he has never forgotten his roots – hence his backing for his hometown club.
The FA Vase excitement is tangible, even on Sunset BoulevardRichard Short
He said: “I’m very proud of being born and bred in South Shields and all the team have been achieving of late.
“It was actually the association with Craig Russell that most excited me a few years ago.
“How could a hero of mine be playing at my hometown club?
“Of course, now we’ve got the legendary Julio Arca. Incredible.
“The FA Vase excitement is tangible, even on Sunset Boulevard.”
Los Angeles-based Richard has acted in Law & Order, Vera, American Horror Story and Agent Carter, as well as many other TV series, while he has appeared on Broadway and in many independent films.
He added: “I don’t get to see South Shields games being an ex-pat.
“As my career has grown I have less time to return home.
“Shooting schedules can be brutal and long and I’ve spent hours on soundstages in New York, Chicago, Toronto or Los Angeles googling South Shields FC results on my phone, usually boring the actors around me with the tiniest of details.
“I’m proud to come from South Shields.
“I’m proud of my family still there. Proud of saveloy dips from Dicksons. Of magnificent curries from Ocean Road. The lifeboat. The fair. Fishermans Bay. Marsden Rock.
“I’m proud of the betting shops my granda lived his life in.
“Proud of the finish to The Great North Run. Of Tyne Dock. Mariners Park.
“Of the warm hearted people in a cold, windswept environment.
“Proud of the magnificent Town Hall and proud to wear the claret and blue of SSFC.
“We have such history. We should all be proud to be associated with it.”
Richard is just the latest to demonstrate his support for the Mariners ahead of tomorrow’s huge match.
Should Shields defeat Coleshill over two legs - with the home tie taking place a week tomorrow at Mariners Park - their prize would be a first-ever appearance at Wembley in the final in May.
PLEA TO FANS STORY
South Shields FC has issued a plea to its supporters ahead of tomorrow’s FA Vase semi-final first leg at Coleshill Town.
The club was hit with an FA fine after a supporter threw a flare onto the pitch during January’s Vase tie at Team Solent.
The Mariners – who have also confirmed they will be receiving no more tickets from Coleshill ahead of tomorrow’s game - have issued a reminder to fans that any repeat could land the club in more hot water.
The club statement said: “We appreciate the fantastic support we have received both at home and away throughout the season, and hope that tomorrow’s game celebrates everything that is good about South Shields FC.
“After our last away tie in the FA Vase, at Team Solent in January, the club was fined for a failure to control its supporters, following the throwing of a flare onto the pitch.
“The club was also warned over pitch encroachment and a plastic cup which was thrown into the goalmouth.
“We are aware that a number of supporters have purchased tickets directly from Coleshill, and we have yet to be advised over whether any segregation will be in place on the day.
“The club trusts that supporters will, as the vast majority have done at all games this season, behave in an appropriate manner and ensure our reputation is not damaged by any further incidents tomorrow.
“We hope all attending have a safe journey down and enjoy the game.”
Over 300 Shields fans are making the journey to the Midlands.
The club had hoped more would be made available, but with Coleshill heading for a record crowd in excess of 1,700 for the game, that will now not happen.
The statement added: “The club has been advised that it will receive no further tickets for the Buildbase FA Vase semi-final first leg at Coleshill Town.
“While the club is disappointed with this outcome, it is unfortunately beyond our control.
“We would like to thank all supporters who are making the effort to travel to the Midlands to support the team.”