Can anyone please tell me what the difference between "have been" and "was" in the following sentence is?

Here is the text:

have been/was a big fan of Tottenham football club but from now on I will never support the team. It is because of the rude behaviour to other footballers in the last match a have come to this conclusion.

Note that before that incident happened, I was a big fan of the team. I am not a fan any more.

  • 2
    Have you looked up the difference between the simple past ("was") and the present perfect ("have been")?
    – stangdon
    May 26, 2018 at 17:46
  • 1
    @stangdon Hi, yes I have and I know the difference. But I am a little confused because there are some situations where both tenses can be used. I think the above sentence is one of those. Therefore, if you please explain whether I can use both tenses in that sentence, that'll be very helpful.
    – user254288
    May 26, 2018 at 18:02
  • 2
    @user254288 Using was or used to be instead of have been signals at the start of the sentence that you are no longer a fan. Have been fails to give this early warning. So it depends on what you want to indicate. May 26, 2018 at 23:43

1 Answer 1


"Have been" refers to something that you still are, for example "I have been a fan of that sports team for years." "Was", similarly to "used to be", similar to "had been", are all expressing that you are no longer, for example "I was/used to be/had been a fan of that sports team, but now I am not."

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