Like a Bat out of La Bastarda

Oh, hello there kids! How we doing? I’m just fine thanks. Well, apart from the fact that Meat Loaf became the latest famous bod to pop the old clogs and leave all of us left here in the roaring 20’s wondering what the fuck is the point to life. But, you know. Swings and roundabouts innit. Still, no doubt after the sad passing of said Loaf or Meat, there are still people out there trying to be fucking funny and still asking what exactly what exactly said singer would not do for love. You know the song right?

Well, let us assist! If you’d been paying bloody attention and listened to the actual lyrics, you know, the words the dude was singing, you’d know that ol’ Meat would not lie to you, stop dreaming of you or forget about you and move on. Problem solved!! What? You just bought the single and made it a Number one in the UK for the sum of SEVEN weeks and never actually even bothered actually listening to it? Jeez. I’m not sure we can be friends any more. I mean, such a lack of attention to detail! Just think of the amount of shit you’re missing out on in this blog alone!! Ok ok, I’ll give you one last chance. And that’s it. But seriously, you’re really gonna need to start switching on and getting with the program round here sunshine.

Sutton
Historic & beautiful Sutton…

Also this week, I’ve been somewhat troubled by a purchase I made from the fine emporium of grub and tat that is Lidl’s. I saw some garlic sausage in the meat aisle and thought I’d give that a go to pep up my lunchtime sarnies during the working week. I mean, I don’t mind a bit of garlic and all, but fuck my old boots this stuff is on another level. I mean, we’ve got it stored in an airtight box, in the fridge and you can still smell the bastard. And god help you if you open said fridge, as you’re punched squarely in the face by what feels like the garlic essence of peak Mike Tyson. Still, doesn’t taste bad on a sarnie, but you’ll need to change your clobber afterwards. And jet wash your mouth out, with Trebor extra strong’s. Not sure we’ll be purchasing it again in future if I’m honest.

So, after Tuesday night’s latest later than late show at GGL where Mr Will Randall popped up and pinged an injury timer into the bottom corner of Colchester’s net, a goal that cost their gaffer his job the following afternoon, we have to return to action today against a slightly tougher oppo. Northampton Town are in, er, town, for this 3rd vs 4th contest (we’re the 3rd by the way! Had we mentioned that?). Big game this. Important stuff. Mainly as they’ve improved significantly since we took proper liberties on their manor earlier in the season. So of course, I treat it with the reverence it deserves and keep my fat arse in my pit about as long as I dare. It would have been later, but sadly I and the missus need to make a supply run and Sainsburys awaits our attention. Joy.

Beer
Get ’em in….

With all sorts of shit purchased and safely transported back to HQ by midday, I of course dash straight out the door for pints. Yeah, like bollocks. I get a cuppa and a couple of crumpets on the go first. It’s a home game for god’s sake, there’s no rush. Eventually though I tip out the door and head for the bus stop, mainly as West Sutton International is off limits due to Thameslink deciding they can’t be fucked with the running trains thing again. Still, the wait is short and I’m soon on the front seat top deck with a bit of mid-90’s Swedish rap metal on the go courtesy of the delightful Clawfinger rattling round in my nut.

A quick stop in Sutton for the usual Saturday Ribena and some of Greggs finest and I’m wandering down to GGL behind a couple of lads who are already a touch worse for wear. Although I can’t tell if it’s due to beers or other substances. Thankfully they fuck off after the churchyard and leave me to the rest of my walk in peace. As I wander up the drive, Chalmers appears from the other side of GGL and we head into the ground before he peels off to dump an ill fitting Xmas present off on Mr X in the megastore. Ah, a refund! He’ll fucking love that. Sorry, can’t wait PC, I need a beer mate. The main bar is way busier than Tuesday and I instead take a wander through to the players bar. Here I find 4Days and Chris enjoying refreshments, as well as a mildly disabled Indy, complete with walking stick, who’s been laid up at home with sciatica the last couple of weeks.

Sutton United
Few in today!

Pint sorted, we natter whilst a terrible Premier League clash between Everton and Villa plays out on the box. 4Days is invested as he’s had a Jackson on the home side, but they’re losing of course and from a couple minutes watch, you can see it’s probably going to stay that way. Also in the house is Cookie, who’s equally as sad as the rest of us Sutton watching brother as we touched upon in the in Exeter blog on NYD, has wound up in the hospital a touch poorly. Part of this has meant a stay in ICU and sedated. Of course, we ask after his well being. “I went to visit during the week” says Kev “he was a bit out of it. Told me to ‘fuck off’ and called me ‘a cunt’ when I got there”. Sounds like Paul! Seems he’s properly on the mend then. Hurry back mate, you’re missing out. Beverages downed, it’s time to head out back into the cold and fill our veins with some more fine League 2 nonsense. At first, it looks like we’ll have to zip round to the Rec side as there’s large queues, but we notice this is just oddly the first set of gates and skip round the crowds and slip straight into the ground in no time at all.

Bouzanis, Milsom, John, Goodliffe, Kizzi, Ajiboye, Eastmond, Smith, Randall, Bugiel, Olaofe SUBS: Barden, Wyatt, Nelson, Wilson, Bennett, Davis, Boldewijn

The first half, from a Sutton perspective, is pretty forgettable. We find it hard to get anything going, especially in the middle of the park where their 3 against our 2 gives them the upper hand. Like a lot of sides this season, they have a lot of the ball but don’t particularly do a lot with it. Sure, they produce a couple of threatening moments, but Deano only has to stop a 1 on 1, as the defence is on its toes and largely deals with any dangerous balls in. In fact, their main threat is from long throw ins from both sides. Yeah, we’re from the National League lads, nowt we’ve not seen before. Despite all the ball, the best chance of the first half drops to Ali Smith when Dave breaks well following a Northampton corner, gets to the bye line and sticks it in only for the low cross to be half blocked. The ball loops up, drops just inside the edge and Smith brings a good strong one handed save from the keeper.

Sutton United
The old lady filling up nicely…

Apart from this, the 1st half is pretty meh. Their gaffer is whinging up from as early as 10 minutes in when literally nothing has happened and needs the ref to tell him to pipe down and I realise I’ve made a terrible mistake with wearing my custom Championship winning Adidas trainers. Stylish? Definitely. Summer footwear? Undoubtedly. My poor tootsies! Jesus man, how long have you been doing this? Still, at least at half time I can go for a piss and get some circulation going again. Thankfully, Matt and Jase are into our lot at the break and they start the 2nd 45 with a lot more life about ’em.

Early on, Kizzi and Dave combine on the right and the full back whips in a great cross that Tanto can’t reach but Randall can at the back stick. His bullet header is well saved by the keeper and sadly his forward momentum means that when the ball comes back to him he gets it caught under his feet and can’t convert the rebound. Tanto also has an Omar shot deflected his way, but under pressure he can only direct his header straight at the keeper when either side would surely have meant a goal. But with 15 to go, Ritchie being prepared as a sub on the sidelines and only one side looking likely to win it, the officials once more intervene to fuck up what’s been a perfectly decent game of football. There’s a bit of a tussle for the ball around halfway towards the stand side. It’s the story of the afternoon to be honest, players getting no time on the ball and having to scrap for it. Their lad goes down and the ref apologetically awards a free kick. However, they’re not happy and Mr Cheerful on their bench is rearing up again and their big no.6 reckons there’s been a stamp. The 4th official gets involved and before we can work out what’s happened, Easty’s copped a red and we’re down to 10 men.

Totts dips his hand in AB’s purple ball bag……what?

Quite how he’s seen anything on the blind side of the play when the ref facing it and being twice as close will take some explaining if we’re honest. This is League 2 lads, we don’t want any of that busy VAR type wankery down here thank you very much. So we go from looking to push on and win the game to adjusting and seeing out what we have. Issac departs for Kenny to bolster the midfield and the lads roll up their sleeves for the last 15 plus added. In the end, you can see why they’ve a similar record to Tranmere. Solid unit, but don’t score many. Despite the man advantage, we stick at it and the back four puts in the shift to see off their huge throw ins and earn us a point. Shame that, as at 11 v 11 it looked like only one side was like to win it but that’s the way it goes. A point’s a point and we’ve edged just that little bit closer to the safety mark. The lads are applauded off after another 90 minutes graft and we head round to the bar for a much needed pint. Also, my feet are really cold. Stupid trainers.

Fortunately, Magnum’s got round sharpish for the refreshments and has a round waiting for us. We get the beers on and sup up to a well earned pint and await AB and his Strikers Are Key lunacy. Here, I find myself rescued from a problem I’d largely been leaving to future me. Totts, gracing us with his presence today fresh from his south coast dacha, sidles up to me in the bar and makes an offer I can’t refuse. “Want me to do the Bristol Rovers away blog?”. Funny you should mention it mate, but I’d found out earlier this week that due to a family gathering I’d have to sack off a return trip to the Memorial Ground and was building up to putting out a heartfelt appeal for a blogging stand in for the game. No need now. Sweet! Also, lurking at the bar is our skipper and he looks a bit moody, can’t think why. I leave him be but a couple of lads commiserate with him and he shows them the incident on his phone having got the clip from SUFCTV. And let’s just say if we don’t appeal that AND get it overturned, then we may as well just pack it in. Absolute rotter of a decision.

Sutton United
Homeward bound….

As Dagenham flop to an early 2-0 deficit against Stockport on the box, AB arrives with his kit and caboodle and starts off the process of a run of no less than three SAK draws. As he sets up, Chancellor Oakes appears with a wad of cash in an envelope to provide the funds for the upcoming prizes. “What do you do when you’re not funding revolutions Oaksey?” I enquire. First up, Ade has Totts on the chair and he draws ball number 34. A lass comes up, picks her key and fails to open the safe. Draw number two? Same fucking number! 34. This time, a chap from the syndicate puts himself in the hot seat and like the lass before, fails to open the safe. This means that for unlucky draw number 13 there’ll be 1450 nicker up for grabs. Sean the Ram gets dragged in to draw the ball this time and he yanks number 21 out. Which just so happens to be Magnum PI’s. Sadly for him, he’s shot off after one pint for a night out with the missus and whilst others instantly turn to Whatsapp to mug him off for doing so, Sean instantly nominates muggins here to do the duty with the key. Of course, being a charitable sort, I try to ensure that everybody wins by loudly requesting everyone in the room denies any of this ever happened and we all get pissed on the proceeds if I do the business.

It seems the plan’s a goer. But sadly for me and everyone present and I guess in a way, our favourite PI, I pull the wrong key and fail to open the safe. So long, farewell, adios, Auf Weidersehn, goodbye to 1450 sovs and to make matters worse, I can’t even persuade AB or Oaksey to let me ‘look after’ Magnum’s 50 quid consolation prize either. Oh well, I tried! The beers flow and the jukebox for the first time in a while takes a hit. Sadly this includes Robbo getting access and that fucking song getting an airing, although it’s close to 2 years since any of us really had to put up with it, so we’ll let it slide this once. Mr X does however demand that Beckett sticks on some Meat Loaf in honour of the big lad with the pair of lungs on him. Oh and our latest League 2 point of course.

Stylish maybe, but definitely not winter footwear….

But, with time getting on, I decide I should probably hit the highway like a battering ram, however I decide to grab an Uber instead of a silver-black phantom bike as it’s a bit nippy out. And leaving Mr X to one more Moretti at the bar, I head out into the cold one last time for the trip home and dinner with her ladyship. 50pts? Not gonna be necessary at this rate.

Wait, is that garlic I can smell??

Taz

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