RYMAN PREMIER DIVISION
ENFIELD – 2 [Allen 15. Georgiou 45]
SUTTON UNITED – 2 [Haworth 18. Corbett 81]
Enfield has never been a great trip for us.
Even right back when I started following the U’s and our encounters in the Conference, you could count on one hand the number of times we’ve beaten the E’s in recent years and still have a couple of fingers left over. Even when they’ve been a bit shit recently we’ve still struggled against them.
The trip to their old Southbury Road ground was never eagerly anticipated, so you can imagine our great joy when they sold up and moved in with Boreham Wood. Now it’s not the trip that’s the problem, or the ground. It’s the town itself.
To put it bluntly, it’s dead. And a bit depressing. Which no doubt makes it the perfect location to have the set of TV’s most miserable program. Eastenders. What I’m getting at here dear reader is that Enfield are what is commonly known in the footballing world as a ‘bogey team’. And then some.
I join Bob in a pub by Farringdon station for a couple of warm up pints before jumping back on the Thameslink and heading for Boreham Wood.
Strolling down the main street of the thriving metropolis of Elstree 30 minutes later,. Bob comments on the fact that the weather is always crap when we visit. Despite being completely correct, I tell him to shut up as his words will no doubt bring about a storm/monsoon of biblical proportions. He really should know better, the stupid boy…
2 pints in the local Wetherpoons later, just as yours truly is polishing off a rather fine sausage & onion bap, I happen to gaze out of the window. It’s snowing.
No, you didn’t hear me wrong. It’s fucking snowing. In fact, it’s a small blizzard. Great, like it wasn’t cold enough already!!!
I immediately inform Bob that he’s a “bastard”. “Oooops!” is the best response he can muster.
Thankfully, the blizzard subsides as we leave the boozer. But it’s still a cold wet 10 minute stroll to the ground.
The U’s line up suffers it’s first change for about a month, with club captain Mison out for 2 games having completed his 2nd set of 5 bookings recently. This gives Craig Howard his chance and the skippers armband to Eddie Akuamouah. Quite why JR has decided to keep his wingbacks formation when he could just have switched back to 442 with Matt Gray on the right escapes us. The reason he gave up, albeit temporarily on the wingbacks was due to the lack of a third regular centre-back. Hammonds return changed that. So surely logic dictates the opposite should occur when we lose one of those 3 centre backs?? Oh I dunno, maybe it’s me being picky…
The early exchanges are scrappy due to the blustery conditions and because of this, there are few clear cut chances. The U’s move the ball around well, but suffer from a lack of penetration up front.
As it happens, the home side take the lead with 15 minutes played. Allen receives the ball a good 20-odd yards out and lets fly. Whether the windy conditions help or not is academic as the shot flies past Dunn and into the top corner. (Above description supplied by Bob as I was checking a text message at the time. Ooops!)
A couple of minutes later and the cold weather combined with several pints means a bog visit is required. I trot round to the gents next to the main stand. (Now here’s a tip. If you are in need of a leak at Boreham Wood and your team are attacking the car park end, go into the lav and stand at the first urinal just inside the door. Look to your right and you can clearly see the goal and a good 20 yards of pitch. Trust me, a very handy bit of advice if, like me, you seem to frequently suffer from misseditcosiwasinthekharzi)
I reveal this little gem because, as I stand doing you know what, the ball flies into my field of view from the far side of the pitch and Rob Haworth swoops to power a header in at the near post. Woo Hoo! We’re level. And I saw it. And I managed to avoid pissing on my shoes whilst punching the air in celebration. Result!
On returning to my spot behind the goal, Bob informs me the cross was supplied by Dave Timothy. Cheers mate. I couldn’t quite see that bit!
There, bet you don’t get many reports including goal descriptions as seen for the male convieniences.
The goal gets our lads going and for a short spell, the U’s control affairs but create very few chances of any note.
Things go awry near half time when a bit of handbags involving 10 or so players kicks off. Although quite how Georgiou escapes scott free having run 30 yards to get involved amazes me.
Then right on the whistle, a suicidal bit of defending costs us dear. Rob Haworth, back helping out at a corner, fails to get any purchase on a header. The ball drops to a lurking E’s player who feeds a colleague out by the touchline. With the U’s defence all over the shop, a cross picks out the porky figure of Georgiou unmarked at the back post and he finishes from close range.
We take a trip into the bar to warm up and catch some half times, then back out for more less than entrhalling action.
The second half proves to be a bit of a scrappy affair, with chances again few & far between. The U’s again manage to move the ball well, but fail to make any serious impact in the final 3rd of the field. Enfield mount mainly counter attacks, with Georgiou the main focus. Although they do have one laughable shout for a penalty with an incredibly poor dive that even we at the opposite end could see was a complete joke.
Sutton’s best opportunity of the half comes from one of our rare bits of decisive passing of the half. Corbett and Honey combining to put Wingfield in on goal. But he delays his shot a moment too long and the ‘keeper smothers his close range effort.
The U’s introduce Nick Williams and Matt Fowler to try and change the pattern but both are pretty ineffective. Especially Williams who looks completely knackered after about 10 minutes. Yet again, for some strange reason, Matt Gray remains on the bench. As for Fowler, a loan spell somewhere might be best for him as he’s done pretty much sod all since early August.
With time running out and us lot behind the goal resigning ourselves to another crappy defeat away to Enfield, Matt Corbett picks up the ball 35 yards out advances on goal and lets fly. Seemingly too far out and not hit hard enough to fool the ‘keeper, the ball takes a bounce in front of him as he dives and the ball evades his dive and nestles into the net.
Right, that’ll do. Taxi!!!
So a dull draw, with the only real plus points being that, once again, the lads kept plugging away until we got something from the game. That if nothing else is encouraging.
So it’s back to the local Wetherspoons for a pint and then off back into town to visit ‘The Head of Steam’ outside Euston station. A pub that when we arrive, has been completely hired out for a private party. Bastards. So it’s back to Farringdon for a consolation pint or four and a KFC before heading home.
MAN OF THE MATCH : Hard to single anyone out really……..
ENTERTAINMENT : 4. Away to Enfield with no great drinking opportunities. Cosmic………..
TEAM : Dunn, Hammonds, Palmer, Howard, Timothy, Gonsalves, Honey, Corbett, Wingfield, Haworth, Akuamouah. SUBS : Fowler, Williams, Gray