Sutton United – 1 [Newhouse 57]
Kettering Town – 1 [Brown 54]
I’ll admit it, I’m rather glad to see the back of Kettering. They’re just a traditional big ‘orrible Conference side.
The game at their place was one of the worst games I’ve seen this season (only Telford was worse!), with some of the poorest finishing from U’s forwards I’ve seen in many a year. Well, the rematch was just as bad. An atrocious first half with a better second half and very little to show for it at the end however.
A quick butchers at the proggie reveals that the electrically incompetent chaps at Forest Green appear to have reneged on their agreement to admit all the U’s fans who travelled down earlier in the season for nothing. Bastards. A 2 quid fucking discount? That’s an insult! According to our ‘friends’ in Gloucestershire, we were inconvenienced no more than their fans!! WHAT? Most of them have a 10 minute walk to the bloody ground! We have a 280 MILE round trip! Total journey time is around 4 hours. And that’s if you go with Colin! Christ knows how long the coach will take. AND it’s a half day from work. Well I for one will be as loud and obnoxious as possible this Wednesday night. I’m going to make the most of my fiver entry fee…
Our line up was probably the most adventurous this season. Thankfully Barry Laker is back from suspension and returs to the back 4. Nko gets a start and the biggest suprise is that JR has dropped Sammy. He’s been replaced by new signing Aidan Newhouse. The gang exchange puzzled looks. Who the hells he?? A bit of rummaging around in the old grey matter produces a thought that he might have played for Wimbledon. Oh well, we’ll see. The pitch is a bloody mess. It’s been pissing down all night and our legendary draining system is it’s normal efficent self. Natrually, one half of the pitch is under water.
The game starts and it’s clear straightaway that we’re crap. Kettering make all the early running, just as they had at their place and create most of the chances. They think they’ve taken the lead but Dale Watkins is miles offside when he converts a low cross to the back post and the ref disallows it. This wakes us up a little and we start to come out of our shell. Newhouse is looking ok up front. He holds the ball well, his distibution ain’t bad and he actually looks like he knows what he’s doing! He has a chance himself when he hammers a Sears cross a foot over the bar. U’s create little else whilst the visitors continue to be by far the stronger. ‘Judith’ and myself wander round a little early to bag ourselves a half-time pie from Rose’s hut.
On our way round, Gwynne Berry goes down and is stretchered off. Harford drops in to fill. Chalmers queues up only to announce that there’s only one pie left and he’s having it!! I know we normally say judith eats all the pies, but this time it’s true!! I have to settle for a cuppa and making the qeueing Kettering fans laugh with the abuse I direct at the pie munching Chalmers for his failure to secure me my munchies. Whilst I sip my tea and fat guts scoffs his steak & kidney, the visitors have another goal cancelled out.
A bit of shit defending by our lads leaves a Kettering forward 1 on 1 with Howells. He rounds the sprawling ‘keeper and just as he’s about to tuck the ball away, Harford appears and manages to nick the ball off his toe. It goes straight up in the air, where Harford is beaten to the header and the ball drops into the empty net. Their fans jump about a lot, until the ref blows his whistle and signals offside WITHOUT the aid of a linesmans flag. Apparently it’s Mr Watkins, stood like a muppet on the goal line, who’s causing the problem. Phew! Another escape!
Obviosly JR has given another of his ‘frank’ team talks at the break as the lads again start a second half the stronger. Then Mark Watson contrives to somehow screw up a complete sitter (not the first OR last time this season!) Nko sets Newhouse on a run into the box, he draws the ‘keeper and squares it to the totally unmarked Watson. The pass is a bit in front of the arriving forward, but all it needs is a touch.
Well, he gets the touch alright but his shot somehow cannons off the underside of the bar and is hacked away by a relieved defender. Many expletives are used on the shoebox. Rats cocks!
Natrually our guests take the lead soon after. A bit of uncertainty in the back 4 and Brown finds himself 1 on 1 with Howells at the back post. He steadies himself and slots under the advancing ‘keeper. Shit shit shit. Typical U’s again. Piss away a certain goal and then concede at the other end. Fortunately, the lead does’nt last long. A ball over the Kettering defence finds debut man Newhouse in a suspiciously offside position. But the flag stays down, Newhouse outpaces the defender, draws the ‘keeper and slips a curling shot past the ‘keeper and into the bottom corner. Thank christ for that!
This lifts the lads and we have our best spell, but without creating any real threat on the visitors goal. Rowlands comes on for the woefully ineffective Sears and has a bloody stormer! It’s by far his best performance in a Sutton shirt. If Sears is still in the side ahead of him at FGR, Rainsy needs his head seeing to. Kettering themselves go close when a low shot cannons off Howells left hand post. A few more opportunities come thier way but none cause us too much concern. Then with 5 minutes injury time played, we fuck up another perfectly good chance. Nko is sent clear of the defence, he has 2 options as he enters the box, slip the ball to the left to the unmarked Newhouse to slot home and grab us the 3 points or steady himself, break the net and cover himself in glory.
Unfortunately he opts for choice number 2 and blazes the ball miles over the bar. Many of the expletive that greeted Watsons miss earlier are recycled by the shoebox. We’re still using words like ‘tosser’ on the way through the Rec to the pub.
A quick bevvy and we seperate for our individual social ‘engagements’. Oh well off to Forest Green on Wednesday. The tight arsed, electrically challenged fuckers.
MAN OF THE MATCH : New boy Aidan Newhouse. Actually looks the part!
ENTERTAINMENT : 5. Not what you’d call a great advert for Conference footy……
TEAM : Howells, Skelly, Brooker, Laker, Berry, Harford, Harlow, Sears, Ekoku, Watson, Newhouse SUBS : Dack, Forrester, Hutchinson, Rowlands, Little