Florence and the Green Machine

WHILE Argyle were unable to secure a result against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light last month, the Pilgrims did leave Wearside with one extra fan.

Introducing Florence, a six-year-old Sunderland native who was attending the Sky Bet League One clash with her mother and uncle.

Despite not showing much interest in football - according to mum Lucy - Florence was captivated by the marvellous Green Army, declaring her allegiance to Argyle mid-way through the match.

Like the rest of us, Florence was devastated when we went 2-0 down in the closing stages.

Florence’s passion for the Greens appears not to have dampened over time, and neither Sunderland’s comparative success, nor the geographical divide, have been strong enough lures to dissuade her from declaring herself an Argyle fan.

“Florence doesn't normally come to games or show an interest in football,” Lucy told Argyle Media.

“She asked a lot about your fans and was impressed by the large flag you brought along. As we went 2-0 up, I took a photo of us with my brother-in-law, but she wasn't smiling as she's declared she's a Plymouth fan!

“I've tried to explain that the distance is impractical, but she is undeterred and adamant that Plymouth are her team.

“She has taken an interest in results since. We were all behind you against Luton, and she always looks out for Argyle’s results.”

Never likely to turn down a recruitment opportunity, the Green Army mobilised to send Florence her very own first-team kit, which she wears proudly.

While her parents attended Wembley for the Black Cats’ dramatic Checkatrade Trophy defeat to Portsmouth over the weekend, Florence attended the Stadium of Light for a screening of the game. Unlike any other Mackem in attendance, though, Florence was wearing her Argyle kit.

“Florence was delighted with her shirt,” said Lucy. "She recognised the strip straight away.

“It’s a lovely gesture. She has been to a few games this season and shown no interest in the away team or their support.

“I think it was the fact she had not seen a team bring as many fans and flags that drew her to your club, so credit to your supporters for making such a long journey. They've certainly left an impression on this little girl.”

Welcome to the Green Army, Florence. We are delighted to have you.