The return of the classic comic strip Roy of the Rovers after 17 years has been met with joy on social media – and it’s adults who appear most excited by the character’s return.
The original story ran from 1954 until 2001, but publisher Rebellion has overseen a modern redesign and a fresh-faced 16-year-old Roy Race will appear in Match of the Day magazine from June 5.
After so many years on the sidelines, it’s unsurprising the Melchester Rovers star’s return is exciting so many older generations.
Melchester are long past their glory days in the new timeline and will begin as a League Two side, with their prospects enhanced by a familiar teenage prodigy.
His first story sees the club take on rivals Tynecaster and Spanish sides Varagosa and Real Santana.
Off the pitch, the 2018 Roy Race will act as a part-time carer for his disabled father, be an avid user of social media and come across favourite characters from past editions.
The creative team promises Race’s storylines will be football-driven, indicating a move away from memorable soap opera-style angles which included whodunnits, terrorism and shootings.
A series of graphic novels are also planned for the character and his Melchester team-mates.
“The ‘new’ Roy Race might look different to his predecessors, but rest assured the core of the character – from his talent through to his sportsmanship and, of course, his blond mop – remain.”
Match of the Day magazine editor Ian Foster added: “We’re delighted to be serialising Roy of the Rovers. The new designs are stunning and, with a World Cup around the corner, it’s the perfect time to bring the adventures of Roy Race to a new generation of young football fans.
“From buying the comic as a kid myself in the ’80s, I know our readers will be really excited to follow the storylines every week.”