Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Angry Goalkeeper

Time check-5 pm:- Time to leave work and give it legs to the train station to make the next available train back into Sutton. Sweating like Oscar Pistorius waiting on the verdict at his murder trial I make the change at Sutton, and head back into the wilderness, no phone signal area of Banstead. The key into the front door and I’ve made it home in 50 minutes, touch!

A quick drizzle under the shower, a spray of cheapo lynxo and I’m ready to rumble. Enough time to grab my clobber, flags, smokes and other non league football paraphernalia for tonight’s game.

THIS. IS. SPARTA SUTTON!!

I jump in the 500, and suddenly realise, over half way to the club I’ve left my smokes behind. Fuck it ! A quick pit stop into Mulgrave Road to grab some Taylor Mades from the corner shop, and everything will be fine, until some prat in a Mercedes Estate tries to run me over- wanker! With a sudden death nearly taking place, I jump back in the motor and head off down the back streets to the place we call home, Gander Green Lane. 

On arrival at the club, heading towards the direction of the club bar, Taz and Dukey rock up in Taz’s toaster, and we piss off in doors for a pre match drink. A well, acquired non pint of booze for myself, hardcore me, that’s how I roll!

The usual faces appear in the bar, even Mr & the future Mrs Burgess rock up for the occasion. The Welsh one (aka four days) Mr X, Chalmers (no Mrs Chalmers and kids tonight) and the usual mob are enjoying their pre match pints before Kickoff, when Mr Burgess pipes up and mentions that he hasn’t even seen the summer developments.  So myself and the two Burgess’s piss off about 15 mins before KO so he can take a closer look at the new stand and all the other bits and bobs and well I have to say the place is given the full Burgess approval.

A cup of tea and Twix, and we’re ready for the game, so here’s the line up :

Saves typing out we s'pose....

Kicking off in our usual manner, towards the Collingwood End. A quick dash round from the Shoebox to erect (yes I said erect-grow up!) the infamous flag grabbed from home earlier and hoisted the bugger up the back of the stand. God knows why I asked for assistance from Burgess as he has to be the shortest man in Non–League football. With the the game underway, the weather conditions, a little on the blowy side, and with a big FUCK OFF dark evil looking cloud soon to head over, most of the masses head for cover under the stand. 

Mean, moody and that cloud doesn't look too happy either....

With the wind picking up, Sutton keep the ball on the deck, and we seem to be doing alright within the first ten or so, keeping hold of the ball, and playing to feet. In the mean time Dos, this time round has chosen not to climb the gantry but to stay within the dugout, giving clear instructions to the lads, which can be heard echoing around the ground, in amongst the chants from the lads behind the goal. Sutton continue to work it, with JT and Marvs playing up top together as the fav starting striking option. Spillane and Ricky taking control of the middle of the park, and Dundo playing in and out of the whole with Kayne out on the right, and Cloughie marshalling the others from the back.

We continue to use the space and width well, getting balls into the box from both channels, but nothing really buckles from the Havant back four, so are chances are cleared away on most counts. Havant however, not here to be turned over start to get themselves back into the game, their left winger steaming past Cloughie and turns across the box only to blast his attempt over and wide. Another opportunity for Havant as our back four are stuck out of position and the lad again steams through, a wave for offside is given by Clough, but is not called by the lino. Out comes Lovelock making himself stand strong, and commits himself to the cause and in the process takes the feller clean out, just outside the area. Us typical Sutton fans fear the worse, was it a goal scoring opportunity? Was it a last man situation? A minute passes by and the ref pulls a yellow from his pocket, and places Lovelock under caution! Us U’s fans thank the Lord as Kennedy would say! 

For the older, pre-technicolour generation....

Back in the mix, we seem to drop off the pace for a few minutes, allowing Havant once more back in the game for a few snippets. However stern words and actions are sent from Dos in the dugout, and we re-compose and get the matter back in hand! We begin to peel holes in the Havant back four creating space down both channels and begin to put together some decent triangular passes. A number of crappy fouls are committed, the ref don’t seem interested in showing too many cards tonight but keeps stopping the flow, with a constant wave of free kicks in both directions.  Sutton on the break again, a chance for Marv is cleared away. Following his chance on goal, Marv's appearance is put to an end after he hits the deck with an injury. The treatment follows as does our first sub of the night, step up a man from Rwanda- Jessy Reindorf! Marv limps off, a possible Achilles tendon is whispered around the stand. Who knows, time will tell.

Focusing back on the game, we continue to build on where we left off. Jess the man from the southern equator is straight into the action, 2nd touch of the ball in fact.

Another set piece about to hit the first man....

A cross in from the left- and jess is away from his man, and leaps into the air like one of them NBA Basketball players, and the ball skims of the back of his noggin, and creams the Havant keeper and ripples the back of the net. I couldn’t believe it, and I don’t think Jess could either!  Ha ha, the boy is a genius, second touch of the game and after being on the pitch for like 8 or so minutes we go 1 up ! Happy Funking Days! We continue another chance aspires from a through ball from Kayne into the path of JT who speeds past his marker, and still onside with just the keeper to beat, dinks it wide. We could have done with that one, to give us that extra comfort for what was about to happen in the second half.

With brew in hand and chocolate bar-back in the shoebox, talk about Marv’s injury is the shoe box half time talk. With no real facts at hand we are clutch at straws.  The lads now back out on the pitch our focus and attention returns back that out on the pitch. Cue Tom Lovelock. 

Either Juan got taller or he's sneaked into the TV gantry for this one.

Some 24 hours have nearly passed since the game ended and I’m still asking myself this very same question, what the actual fuck was that 2nd half about, because I’m a little lost to be honest. The first half we played decent football, and what happened after the H/T team talk. We fell apart, we lost our shape, we lost direction and focus, and my god did we let them back into the game. Havant clearly weren’t happy with the outcome of the 1st 45, and did they up their game or did we drop of ours? So many questions. So back to it then, we were under the cosh for most of the 2nd half, wave after wave of Havant attacks, and BOY OH BOY DID Lovelock keep us alive. With a performance like that from Lovers, I can’t see Julian making a quick return to the number one spot.

I won’t however leave you on a down a dreary note, because after all. A win is a win and three points is STILL 3 points. To be frank, I don’t care how we win, so long as we win, and we can bank the big 3.

Oh yeah and it’s our first home win of the season in the new Banarama Split Conference!

        
>>>> Check out number 10 in this short video ^^^^^

This is Juan, signing off.

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