Friday, 23 December 2011

Dear Reader, hopefully this will work out! Spizz returns.

Gashead Simon writes the match report.
Friday 16 December
Do they know it’s Christmas?
The last game of the year, a whole three weeks before the next game with an orgy of eating and drinking in-between called Christmas … surely there would be a big turnout at the Finsbury Leisure Centre on Friday 16 December? Well, no actually. So, well done to those nine hardy players who took to the Astroturf on a decidedly crisp evening and a black mark to those who cried off at the last minute, citing ‘other plans’ – we know who you are and what you were up to!
A winter’s tale
With Simon Jarvis away and Joe holidaying in Havana, the thorny task of team selection was left to Mick, who, redefining the word decisiveness, took 5 seconds to do what seems to take most of us an eternity. So, for the last match of the year, the sides were: Simon, Boro Dave, Yevgeny, young Sam and Geoff against Ross, Alan, Mick, Hugh and Danny. On paper, seemingly balanced, you would think, but, in reality, slightly lopsided, especially when one of your team has not turned up (no prizes for guessing who!).
Immediately, both sides went on the attack and, as predictably as night follows day, immediately the defensive mistakes started. Mick’s team went one nil up with a cool finish from Hugh before Yevgeny quickly equallised. Two goals in two minutes and no defence worthy of the name – it was going to be a goalfest and so the evening proved.
Stop the cavalry – Geoff has arrived!
Geoff eventually appeared and went on Simon’s side – unfortunately, no amount of attacking threat from Boro Dave and young Sam can make up for sloppy passing and an unwillingness to track back– Alan Morgan helped himself to an early Christmas present, as did Danny, and before too long the game was getting away from Simon’s side … until something extraordinary happened.
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing!
Spizz arrived albeit some 10 minutes late and went on Simon’s side (for about 15 minutes) and, amazingly, not only went in goal when asked, but stayed there with little complaint for a whole 10 minutes, proving himself quite an adept keeper. Simon’s side now had a numerical advantage and the two-goal deficit was quickly clawed back, through a lucky deflected goal from Yev and a slide rule finish from Boro Dave. 4-4 and the game appeared finely balanced.
Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!
It’s raining goals – and Spizz, who has now been switched to Alan’s side, is now doing what he loves best – goalhanging – and, inevitably, getting on the score sheet. Shot for shot, misplaced pass for misplaced mass and Geoff’s capacity to bemuse and frustrate in equal measure – and more goals were inevitable! By now Alan’s side were leading 7-5 and seemingly heading for victory until young Sam got on the end of a sumptuous curling pass from Simon – an assist that should live long in people’s memory, but, like the last one, will probably have been forgotten by the time people get to the Old Fountain. Another quick goal from Sam and it was 7-7. Hurrah! Until, inevitably, another defensive lapse and Mick’s side took the lead, only for a last gap equaliser and a highly improbable 8-8 draw. Both sides seemed reasonably happy with the result, Simon’s especially that they hadn’t lost, although what Alan Hansen would have made of it … - well, I think we can all guess!
Merry Xmas everybody!
A high-scoring draw to end the year – well there could have been worse ways to round off the year from a footballing perspective. However, if there’s one wish for 2012 – it’s that everybody track back and defend! If you don’t want to be burgled, don’t leave the back door open, as Brian Clough didn’t say. On that sober note, I would like to wish everybody a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and see you all on Friday 6 January!

Party fears too
P.S. Much to Yev’s annoyance, the Christmas party was postponed as quite a few of the stalwarts were missing. It will be rescheduled sometime next year.

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