Not every football team is destined to enjoy tangible success in each and every season. There are more losers than winners. Only three teams get promoted, only one team wins the league. For most teams, the story of a season is mostly going to be a story of disappointment. A story of nearlys and failed efforts.
Some teams, however, will taste glory. Aston Villa - and I cannot believe that I'm saying this - are one of those teams.
At the end of another game of football, Aston Villa stood victorious and lifted the Championship playoff trophy - a small cup of silver that also buys a team a place in the Premier League.
And this is no accidental success. There was no bluster in Villa's triumph. They didn't turn up to a final and bounce to victory on the back of an accident. They fought hard. When the going got tough, they wrapped their hands into fists and fought. Down and out in February, the team dug for glory with broken knuckles and twisted hands. With knackered limbs they gave an extra yard. Villa fought for ten games, and earned victory and then they carried on. In the final, they found an extra gear, just when it was needed, to keep the game out of the grasp of the opposition, Derby County.
In February, Aston Villa were offered stability and an 'almost-ran' finish in Dean Smith's first season in charge of the club. They spat on that. Out of the playoff hunt and certainly out of the promotion battle, the team demanded more and when asked of them, the team stepped up.
They stepped up and won. They stepped up and earned promotion to the Premier League. They stepped and delivered knockout blows to ten teams in a row to demand a spot in the playoff positions, and then they refused to roll over for West Browich Albion. They then went one further and launched themselves into history.
History, that for the first time, both you and I saw.
It's the first time I've been able to see, with my own eyes, Aston Villa win something. It's not something that I'll see on a grainy tape, nor listen to in an audio archive. It's not a story that I'll have to listen to my Grandfather or Dad tell over and over again, with slight details changing with each retelling. This is tangible. It's mine and it's yours. It's a cosmic event that occurred before our eyes. It's our event. Our triumph. Our reality. Savour it.
This doesn't happen every season.