My sporting weekends have always been dominated by football. As a schoolboy, Saturday mornings meant scurrying up to Dundee’s Dawson Park to train with Broughty United. Sunday mornings meant my paper round, then dubbing my boots followed by a few hours fearing the worst phone call known to man – “It’s aff”.

If the call didn’t come, then the afternoon brought a home game at Gillies Park or a foray around the city. The nightmare, the guaranteed hiding, was playing Fairmuir Boys, the royalty of Dundee schoolboy football. I once went to watch my brother Alan play Fairmuir and they had Stephen Glass, later of Aberdeen and Newcastle, on the bench.

Saturday afternoons were spent watching Dundee United. One of my first games at Tannadice was on the evening of Wednesday 4th March, 1987. The ground was packed to the rafters and I sat in the stand with my brother, dad, grandad, various cousins and uncles and watched Dundee United beat Barcelona under the lights. It was only ever going to be an addiction.

I had a season ticket for The Shed, then sold club programmes to get free entry. One day, I saw two men on North Isla Street selling a fanzine called When The Hoodoo Comes. I bought a copy and found the courage to send them some material. A few weeks later, I stood selling the next issue with them and peeking in wonder at my contribution. It was a Roy of the Rovers comic strip where, through Tipp-Ex and felt tip, I had added a new, deranged and undoubtedly libellous storyline. I was now, sort of, a writer.

At Edinburgh University, I dedicated myself to the extra-curricular, and none more so than football where I progressed to playing for the Firsts. Every other Wednesday meant a bus journey around Scotland, a match against another University, then a gloriously drunken journey home. On Saturday afternoons we played in the East of Scotland League, winding down to the Scottish borders, to towns cleaved between the hills, or strung on clifftops before the North Sea. Hawick Royal Albert, Coldstream, Kelso, Eyemouth, Gala Fairydean.

We played in a Scottish Cup qualifying round against Annan Athletic, now of the professional leagues, which gave us the mind-blowing moment of our defeat being announced on Sportsound during the journey home. But my personal highlight, the one that returns with little encouragement, came against Gala Fairydean. Every amateur footballer has ‘The Goal.’

Well, this is mine and now I will, with absolutely no apology, take the opportunity to describe it in some detail in a newspaper.

The game was drawn as we headed into injury time. We won a corner. I pulled out to the edge of the box. The ball was headed clear. I took one touch to control, then leant back and struck a half volley that arced through the borderland air and arrived so neatly into the top corner you’d think it had been placed there by the hands of angels. For a moment, time stood still.

And then I ran, delirious, to the bench where I was engulfed by my pals while our manager, ex-Hibs and West Ham stalwart Neil Orr, who spent much of his time rightly dismayed by my application, shook his head and smiled and said “bloody Forsyth”.

I moved to London in the early Noughties and soon set up the South London Tangerines with other misplaced Dundonians. We played in the London Supporters League which meant we were literally called Dundee United, wore full United strips and I received a disciplinary letter which, in a long account of my sending off, referred to me throughout as “the Dundee United number ten”. We brought the late, Dundee United great Ralph Milne to London for our end of season awards, where Ralph commandeered the karaoke, sang ‘Suspicious Minds’ on repeat and we only thanked him for it.

I lived for a while in New York, where I played in two games. There was the Mexican League in Brooklyn on a Sunday morning that was full of death threats and stepovers, and a game on a pier in Manhattan’s Battery Park. In the winter, that became The Winter Warriors League which saw the Americans vanish and the ex-pats stoically battle on as the temperature sank below zero and freezing fog rolled in off the Hudson.

After meeting my wife, I returned to live in London, then West Sussex. There I roused myself to a level of fitness that let me spend Saturday afternoons playing for my local town, Petworth, in the county’s amateur league. It was an Indian summer. Think Gary McAllister at Liverpool, or Dusty Springfield’s triumphant comeback with the Pet Shop Boys.

And now here I am, living in rural Herefordshire, nearly forty years old, still dragging myself round sports halls and over pitches, still with a decent chunk of weekend contentment decided by news from Tannadice. Every other Saturday, I watch United’s home matches through an irregular online stream that is prone to catching and repeating, creating a bewildering experience akin to watching the movie Memento but starring Fraser Fyvie.

And once again, as in Broughty Ferry nearly thirty years ago, Sunday mornings are spent dubbing my boots and dreading the news – now delivered by text – that my dreams have been shattered by the weather.

It never ends. And may it never do so.

Eric, Ernie And Me, Neil Forsyth’s drama about Morecambe and Wise writer Eddie Braben is available now on BBC Iplayer. Two new SKY Playhouses written by Neil will be out in the Spring.