Norwich City fan dons Ipswich shirt
Rob GarrattTo football fans there can be little more repulsive than the sight of an arch rival's club colours, and for many Norwich fans the idea of wearing a combination of blue and white is enough to cause a bout of nausea.Rob Garratt
To football fans there can be little more repulsive than the sight of an arch rival's club colours, and for many Norwich fans the idea of wearing a combination of blue and white is enough to cause a bout of nausea.
But City fanatic Angie Neave is preparing to stomach the ultimate insult and don an Ipswich shirt for a day - in a tragicomic stunt to raise cash for charity.
And she is being egged on by a diehard Ipswich supporter and colleague prepared to share in the hurt and humiliation by pulling on Canary colours.
Super-fan Mrs Neave is notorious amongst her colleagues at the Sainsbury's in Longwater Lane, Costessey, for her Canary-crazed antics, which include a decorated car, a yellow and green lounge and a Norwich-themed silver wedding.
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The mother-of-three even swears she has worn one yellow and one green sock for every day of the last decade, and says the best bit of her job is bumping into players like Wes Hoolahan, Paul McVeigh and Matt Gill who shop at the store.
But the bitterest pill to swallow is the knowledge that she will face the humiliation of wearing the Tractor Boys' colours on Friday - the day she celebrates her 54th birthday.
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'I am disgusted just looking at the shirt,' complained Angie. 'Bringing the shirt to work I felt physically sick, it's a horrible feeling - but it's for a good cause.'
Mrs Neave will be collecting money wearing the shirt at the entrance of the supermarket from around 10am.
Joining her will be Ipswich supporter Alan Percy, of Newmarket, who managed to keep his true colours under cover for his first two years over the border at the Norwich supermarket - until one day last year when he dropped his keys and they were handed in at reception, dangling onto a blue and white key ring.
The stunt is part of a bid by the store's staff to raise more than �5,000 for Sports Relief, a three-day fundraising drive for Comic Refief that kicks off on Friday. Mr Percy, who lives in Costessey's Poethlyn Drive with wife Jo, 34, and two-year-old daughter Isabella, will also be completing a sponsored triathlon and taking part in the Sports Relief Mile in Norwich on Sunday.
Another employee, Matt Buckley, will be cycling 200 miles around every Sainsbury's store in Norfolk - from Yarmouth to King's Lynn to Thetford to Sheringham, and several in between - in 14 hours.
Mrs Neave, of Toftwood, near Dereham, is married to Carrow Road fire safety officer Malcolm with three Norwich City supporting sons, including Anthony, 19, Liam, 15.
Donning the shirt of hurt
Passionate Canary fan Mrs Neave is not the only one to stomach the pain of donning a rival club's repellent colours.
Sports Relief's Shirt of Hurt challenge also saw broadcaster and Millwall devotee Danny Baker swapping shirts with diehard West Ham fan Ray Winstone live on radio on Saturday.
Before that football pundit and lifelong West Bromwich Albion fan Adrian Chiles donned a Wolverhampton Wanderers shirt to present Match of the Day 2, while Liverpool supporter and DJ Colin Murray joined him by pulling on an Everton jersey.
Shortly after Chiles' stunt the tables were turned when former England and Wolves striker Steve Bull put on a West Brom shirt.