The Collector Series by World Soccer Shop highlights the stories of those who have continued the longstanding tradition of jersey collecting. Their collections tell the story of family, community and pride in their supporting club. For Darren Spruill, his story intertwines these themes into a narrative of perseverance and love for the game.
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The Collector Series – Issue No. 1 ⠀ -⠀ Darren Spruill has been a lifelong Liverpool fan, which he derived from his mother, who is from England. ⠀ ⠀ Spruill's love for the game has resulted in a large collection of Reds jerseys, that has even earned the nickname of the “Liverpool Alabama Museum”⠀ -⠀ Do you have a collection worth sharing? Share now using #CollectorSeries and tagging @wrldsoccershop⠀ -⠀ #WorldSoccerShop #CollectorSeries #LiverpoolFC #Liverpool⠀
In his youth, Spruill traveled from England to Germany to the United States as his father, a member of the Air Force, followed relocation orders. His love of soccer derived from his mother, who hails from England and relentlessly supported Liverpool F.C.
From the age of 5, Darren has used soccer as his primary form of meeting others and staying connected.
Carrying a soccer ball wherever he went, Darren found friends through other players and youth club teammates. He quickly fell in love with the game and forged an endless bond.
“I honestly remember thinking to myself ‘I love this game. I want to play this the rest of my life,’” said Spruill.
Now at the age of 45, Darren is the proud owner of what Calhoun County locals call the “Liverpool Alabama Museum.”
Under the instruction of his wife, Aimee, Darren was allotted creative control of one room in their home, the basement. With a collection of over 50 Liverpool jerseys, countless authentic signatures, and a bright red Honda Accord with Liverpool decals, Darren converted his “mancave” into a superfans fantasy.
Unfortunately, Darren’s story comes with a tale of misfortune. On March 19, 2018, Darren’s home was struck by a tornado touching down in Calhoun and Cleburne county with winds up to 150 mph. The Spruill family escaped safely but their car, home and basement were severely impacted. Currently, Darren and his family live in his parents’ home while repairs on their home have only just began.
Despite the highs and lows of life, Darren continues a lasting tradition through his collection. Every year, he purchases four Liverpool home jerseys. One for himself, one for his wife, one for their son and one for their daughter. Each are personalized with unique numbers and SPRUILL across the back.
When asked about what his collection means to him, Spruill replied, “Memories. Pride. Happiness. Joy.”
As the athletic director for the city of Anniston, Alabama, Darren organizes soccer tournaments for hundreds of youth players and oversees the growth of his favorite sport. His family, profession and collection all center around his first love. Darren describes himself as very blessed.
“I have enjoyed each jersey and could tell you a story/adventure of how I got the jersey or autograph. [My collection has] helped me meet new friends, build lifelong friendships and create wonderful memories of teams I have cheered for, played for or coached.”
Through family and tradition, Darren has continued building his collection. You can start your own collection today at World Soccer Shop.