Parents have a go at me! Rod Stewart gets awful abuse while coaching young footballers

The One Show: Rod Stewart swerves Live Aid question

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“We live our lives through these kids,” Sir Rod Stewart has confessed in a bid to explain the nastiness that he sometimes hears from the side of the pitch. The 76-year-old musical legend, who has sold over 250 million records worldwide, has turned his attention to his passion for football in his older age and even runs a team.

We’ve known a few really bad sporting parents

Rod Stewart

“They’re all under 10 and wear the Celtic colours,” he has revealed proudly in an interview for BBC Sounds.

However, he claims every single one of the parents has received a stern talking-to for their pitchside behaviour, as they try “not to be abusive on the touchline”.

When asked if it was a hard job for young referees, he exclaimed: “Oh, it’s awful! As far as my team is concerned, all [the parents] have been spoken to.

“We’ve known a few really bad sporting parents, who’ll have a go at the referee, have a go at me – it’s just awful.

“We can give a little bit of advice very quietly – ‘Don’t bug the referee, don’t have a go at the other supporters’…”

Although the atmosphere is generally respectful these days, Rod suspects that parents struggle in the heat of the moment to hold back their passion when it comes to supporting their kids’ sporting endeavours.

“I think what it is, is we live our lives through these kids,” Sir Rod mused. “I don’t play [much] anymore… and all my kids play football.”

As if to further confirm that passions run high in the sport, Rod recalled a time when he had his 15-year-old son in floods of tears after the youngster accidentally injured him.

“He didn’t mean it, [but] he smashed my ankle,” Rod shared.

“I went down [while] he was trying to get the ball off me – so since then I’ve had a brand new knee and an ankle fusion!”

In spite of the mishap, he regards himself as “still good to go” on the field, exclaiming earnestly: “I can still kick the ball around, but not as much as I used to.”

He has also developed an awe-inspiring exercise regime that many half his age would find rigorous, training three times a week for at least two hours each session.

Rod finds that the tough SAS-inspired workouts, including swimming while holding the weight of a heavy brick, improve not just his mood and fitness, but his singing voice too.

“Frank Sinatra taught me… he said: ‘If you want to improve your lung capacity on your voice, do underwater swimming,'” Rod revealed.

He now regularly swims with “one arm and a [heavy] brick… at the bottom of the pool”, in an effort to follow his advice.

Rod has been working intensively on his voice since almost losing it due to cancer left him emotionally “vulnerable”.

He had endured a harrowing throat operation in 2000, after being diagnosed with deadly thyroid cancer, during which surgeons “cut all the way through my neck”.

It took nine months for his voice to recover as the muscles “shrivelled”, and he suffered from memory loss.

“I forgot how to sing!” The bestselling crooner recalled about the time he risked losing his most valuable asset forever.

However Rod is now thriving, and is still braving the occasional tackle on the football pitch.

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