Port Vale groundsman Steve Speed is set to star in a Swedish TV commercial to be released this weekend.
Astroturf is now the surface of choice for Sweden’s top clubs and the advert is geared towards promoting natural, grass pitches – like we have here at Vale Park.
The commercial urges the Swedish public to purchase a new product called ‘English Grass’, produced by Svenska Spel, which can be used to improve the quality of their own lawns.
Fifty-three-year-old Speed, who has worked at the club for more than three decades, was chosen to take part over a number of Football League groundsmen.
Speaking about his role in the commercial, Steve said: “I think it was an honour when I was asked, considering there were three or four clubs being considered.
“They came and spoke to me and said they’d be happy for it to just be Port Vale, which is obviously good for the club, myself and everyone connected to the club.”
He added: “To see how professional they were in the way they filmed the coverage was great.
“It made for a really interesting couple of days. I think one or two of the crew have become Vale fans as well. They went home with some replica shirts which is nice.”
The camera crew spent a number of days at Vale Park over the summer and they followed Steve around as he completed his daily duties.
Johan Svensson, PR Manager at Svenska Spel, was also present. He added: “Getting the opportunity to follow Steve around at Vale Park really made this project one of the strongest proving why football is best played in England.
“The true craftsmanship and dedication from him and his team was impressive and being able to tell his story is fantastic.
“Hopefully we'll help to bring out the Swedish groundkeepers from the sheds they’ve been forced to hide in as a consequence that Astroturf is today the preferred choice in top level football in Sweden.”