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Tributes paid to football fanatic John Duggan

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: November 13, 2012

Football-mad brothers John Duggan (right) and Stephen Duggan who visited every Football League ground in the country

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A FOOTBALL-MAD city man — whose love of the game saw him visit every Football League ground in mainland Britain — has died aged 62.

John Duggan, who was accompanied on his quest by his brother Stephen, died following a short illness.

The former Swansea University porter was 62.

Stephen, from Caerithin, said: "John was a man who lived life to the full.

"He had a triple heart bypass 10 years ago, and ever since then he has grabbed life, and lived every day as though it was a bonus."

The two soccer-mad brothers began their challenge to visit every Football League ground in Wales, England and Scotland back in the 1960s.

Stephen made his first journey to see the Swans playing away from home, against Oldham, and having been bitten by the travelling bug, and the pair decided they wanted to become members of the 92 Club, for people who have been to all 92 grounds in Wales and England.

They eventually made it in 1979, and featured in the Evening Post celebrating their achievement.

They appeared again in 2005, after they chalked up games in all the grounds in Scotland, and new grounds which replaced those visited in the early years. But they were still determined to visit even more, and in recent years have been visiting Welsh Premier and Vauxhall Conference grounds.

The most recent was to watch Dartford against Mansfield on October 26, followed by a tip to see Braintree versus Wrexham the following day. But with that game called off due to a waterlogged pitch, they made a hastily arranged dash to take in Nuneaton versus Barrow.

Community psychiatric nurse Stephen, aged 55, of Ffordd-y-Brain, said: "We loved football, and seeing the game was always the aim, but it was also about travelling, and visiting different towns and villages.

"We started travelling before we met our wives, but they have been very understanding and integral to it all.

"John and I got on brilliantly, he was my best friend.

"There would be times when we were exhausted, or we faced some disappointments, but he was so easy to get on with we never fell out.

"I could never have done it without him."

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