How to Score (On and Off the Pitch)

By Andrew Playle All Rights Reserved ©

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Chapter 43

Archie’s flight from Glasgow was on time for once and Bradley had accompanied Carlos on the airport run. There was much to talk about but with five days ahead of them, Bradley was sure they could cover everything off quickly and spend some time relaxing.

He was easy to spot coming through the arrivals at Malaga airport, Archie was the one with the luminous orange shirt with vivid palm trees on it which told the world that he was here to have a good time. They hugged and shook hands as Carlos took his bag and led them to the car park.

As usual, the sun was blazing in the June sky with temperatures hitting the 40c mark which caught Archie unawares after leaving the balmier climes of Glasgow which was basking in 20c degree ‘heat’. Luckily, Jessie and Martine had prepared some cold drinks and beers ready for them to all go and sit by the pool in their usual chairs.

After more hugs and kisses were exchanged, they all went on to the terrace where Carlos had installed a large canopy to keep them all out of the excessive heat that would surely burn them all to a crisp if they stayed out in it too long.

Archie pulled some papers out of his case and placed them on the table.

‘Okay Bradley, what do we want to deal with first?’ Archie asked. ‘Personal stuff, investment stuff, more personal stuff or Deepak?’

‘Let’s get the personal stuff out of the way first. Sounds like there’s a lot of it.’ Bradley laughed.

‘Sounds good. Right, I’ve been speaking with Drew in Jaipur about your school idea. He thinks it’s a great plan and he is speaking to local builders to get some costs and that so that bit is under control. I told him we would send some money when it’s ready to go. Drew knows some high-up in the council there who will help speed things up for us.’

‘Excellent. Can’t wait to get that started. Now, what about Deepak? How did the trial go?’

‘Again, very good. That boy has talent, no doubt about that, what I am concerned about is whether he is going to settle in Edinburgh. It’s a lot way from home and it will take a bit of adapting for him to settle in. I’m hoping his family will come over regularly although they don’t have much money, so I said we could probably help out. Sponsorship, if you like. He’s staying with Mrs Colquhoun who you might remember from your days at Hearts. She’ll need to expand her recipe book to cater for Deepak, but as long as she keeps him away from the fried stuff he’ll be fine. He’s signed a contract and is now officially a Hearts player so the rest is up to him.’ Archie explained.

‘That’s great. Let me know how he progresses and feel free to pay for the odd flight or two for his family.’

‘Now we get on to your dad.’ Archie looked more serious now and Martine’s ears pricked up. ‘I found out what happened when you were at his bistro and I have to say, it doesn’t put him in bad light. As he told you, there were these two chancers who thought they could extort protection money from him. He rightly told them where to go so they put a brick through the window. The Police arrested the yobs who did it, but the damage was done; bookings were cancelled and they’re struggling a bit now.’

Bradley had had plenty of time to think about what had happened and came to the conclusion that he had been a bit hasty with his dad. Once Martine heard the full story, she had chastised him for his actions also. It seemed that he was the only one who felt annoyed. Even Jessie had a go at him.

‘I’ll speak to dad later. If he needs money to move the bistro to a better location, I’ll fund it. I’ve been a bit hard on him.’ He admitted. ‘Perhaps him and Lucy would like to come over to Mijas for a few days to get over it.’

‘That would be a good idea, Bradley. I’m sure he will be delighted.’ Archie smiled.

That led them on to the boring stuff about how much wealth he had accumulated and what was being done with it. Most of it had gone into property funds and development and was doing rather well, thanks to Archie’s friend. He would like to meet him one day to thank him personally, he thought.

When Archie showed him a spreadsheet with all his investments and net worth, it surprised him. He was now worth over £100 million and it was still growing. He probably had another ten years playing in him yet and these would be his peak earning years.

After Bradley had signed all the paperwork he needed to do he got himself a glass of chilled Ginger Beer and sat back in his reclining chair thinking about all the money he was worth and how it had all happened. It was nice to have; it meant he could look after those around him who had always looked after him, and it meant he could put some of it to good use helping others like Deepak which gave him a warm glow. Archie had suggested setting up a foundation so they could finance other projects like the one in Jaipur and Bradley had agreed this was a splendid idea. Maybe he could get some of his team mates involved as well. Most of them had more money than they knew what to do with, and some of them knew what it was like to live in the slums. This was their opportunity to pay back.

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