Sport: Glenn Hughes

How important is sport in your life?

I loved athletics and running at school, and these days I’m a completely mad soccer fan.

As an ex-pat follower of Wolverhampton Wanderers, how close do you get to recreating the match-day feel and keeping up with the action?

Wherever possible I watch the games online or, better still, attend. But wherever I am in the world – Moscow, Tokyo or at home in LA – on Saturdays at 3pm UK time I’m ready to go. My first Wolves game was in 1961 and I’ve followed them ever since. It wasn’t until I sobered up that I realised Wolves had been in the Fourth Division during the eighties. Nowadays I’m completely maniacal. I see Robert Plant more at Molineux than anywhere else.

With a completely straight face, Pete Way of UFO fame once said: “Villa were losing at half-time so I had to go away and take some heroin.” How do you deal with the stress?

[Laughing] Pete told me that same story. But even in my darkest days I never did anything like that. However, I still find it upsetting when Wolves lose.

As we talk, you’re en route to Brazil to support England in the World Cup. The tournament will be over by time this story is published, but how realistic are your expectations?

I’d be happy to get through the group stages. It’ll be very difficult, but my heart tells me it’s possible. We’ve had enough back luck in the last few World Cups, so maybe it’ll balance out. Finally.

Okay, dilemma time. As unlikely as this may sound, Wolves are in the Final of the Champions League with an evening kick‑off, and your band California Breed are invited to headline the Main Stage at Download. Which comes first?

God… that’s a fucking awful question. I knew you would ask something as heartless as that. But at the end of the day, business is business.

Sepultura once played a gig with a vital World Cup game showing on a TV at the side of the stage. Do you empathise?

Yeah, absolutely. The wife leaves the house at half-time if we’re losing, and if it stays that way she brings me coffee afterwards. She gets it.

Would you, and could you, ever work with a musician who supported Wolves’ deadly rivals, West Bromwich Albion?

Yeah, of course. Though the fan hate between Wolves, the Baggies, Brum, Villa and Walsall is absolutely astronomical. I love banter, but I’ve never understood such tribalism. Try talking to Billy Duffy [of the Cult, who supports Manchester City]… he’s completely mad.

Which other sports do you follow?

I like baseball and basketball – the Lakers and the LA Dodgers. I go with Chad Smith [Red Hot Chili Peppers]. Following sport is such a part of my existence, I cannot imagine life without it.

Dave Ling

Dave Ling was a co-founder of Classic Rock magazine. His words have appeared in a variety of music publications, including RAW, Kerrang!, Metal Hammer, Prog, Rock Candy, Fireworks and Sounds. Dave’s life was shaped in 1974 through the purchase of a copy of Sweet’s album ‘Sweet Fanny Adams’, along with early gig experiences from Status Quo, Rush, Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Yes and Queen. As a lifelong season ticket holder of Crystal Palace FC, he is completely incapable of uttering the word ‘Br***ton’.