Updated: Sep 18
They say a week is a long time in politics, in Walking Football a week can sometimes feel like a lifetime! After the difficulties of Monday’s Ruskin session, Wednesday’s Sutton session should have been a breeze As the peak holiday season is finishing we find our numbers still stretched with European Champions League nights adding to debacle So with Dusseldorf’s Herr Pitt enjoying a night off lying on the bed of nails that is Anfield aided and abetted by Messrs Parr and Brack, we had part time ref and full time megalomaniac El Presidente in charge of the whistle
Eighteen frightened faces were put through the agony of the warm ups by the returning Gonzalo Higuan Moneyball selections were made and 2 teams of 9 crowded on to the AstroTurf to play There’d been an explanatory advice given during warm ups to one of the Group, a stern reminder of the duty of care all players must adhere to for the safety of their colleagues
The teams were;
Orange - Deggsy, Thatto Dave, Grav, One More John, Andy, Jeff Betty, Citeh Geoff, Phil and Grazer
Blue - Lee, Chopper, Alain, Ian H, Ian B, Joe the Ghost, Gary, Nigel and Gonzalo Chris
It was Blues that grabbed the early initiative with a strange goal by Chris who passed the ball into the bottom corner of the net from some distance The shot wasn’t especially strong or wickedly swerving, the defenders seemed transfixed as rather like the parting of the Red Sea a yawning gap invited the shot One nil to the Blues At this point in my recorded notes a reminder of the laws regarding the direction of tackles is heard loud and clear Not from behind nor the side but frontal only - missionary style
Blues took a firmer hold with a well worked second goal, Gary taking very well deserved plaudits for a move that featured Ian B, Lee and Joe the Ghost. 2-0 with Oranges peeled apart not unlike a citrus fruit of the same name Within a minute of the restart Phil latched onto a loose ball and took mighty strides (or running depending on which team you’re on) to fire home At this juncture there was a slight delay clearing the pitch of some toys that had been thrown from a Pram No further words necessary!
As half time approached Blues playing some neat inter-passing scored their third goal thanks to the ever-willing Ian B, who finished with a well placed drive
A feature of the night was the quality of goals, lots of excellent placement rather than power Billy Big Toe having a night off (though not at Anfield)
At the start of the second stanza Orange employed a high press to pen their opponents deep in their own half of the pitch But as is so often the case if you employ that tactic you must guard against the breakaway Blues swiftly moved the ball on the counter attack leaving Chris the relatively simple task of scoring his second and Blues 4th
At 4-1 surely it was game over now? A further spell of Orange pressure (the squash?) created an opening that Grav seized on to fire home from close in So maybe the come back was on after all? Blues released a little of the pressure with Joe in a fashion only he can offer striking a well directed finish across keeper Jeff to make the score line 5-2
Jeff (or Betty to his Boot Room companions) atoned for his error with a typical snapshot that was too accurate for Gonzalo to deal with in the Blue nets 5-3 The goal owed much to an error by Chopper who narrowly missed clearing the perimeter fence with his snatched Row Z special The resulting free kick was moved left to Jeff who fired home
Special mentions to Nigel; with his head glistening in the floodlight glare a testimony to his application, and Gary who worked smartly all night with lots of timely passes to drive the Blues forward
Arguably the goal of the night was scored by the Huyton hero who curled a nice left foot effort past the Ghost (taking his shift as keeper with his usual casual approach) Thatto Dave and Andy Capt grafted to create the goal but the finish was delivered in style without the use of the Big Toe (no mean feat) So 5-4 and what should have been a formality was now less secure
It was Joe the Ghost‘s chance to seal the victory taking huge delight in finishing off a sweeping move that involved most of his team mates 6-4 the final score There was another delay which EUFA has vowed it will investigate with some more toys jettisoned from another Pram
SHWFC can expect a hefty fine and 3 penalty points on its licence
On a night with 10 goals and plenty of scoring opportunities the game fizzled out in the remaining 7 minutes The baying hordes of hockey players audibly relieved when El Presidente finally signalled the end of the game
So what have we learned from another Wednesday evening? If it’s goals you seek, save your money, stay local Twice as many goals at Sutton than Anfield!
Remember Monday is our Ruskin Anniversary session followed by the chance to meet the players at the Turks Head Be there or be square!
Walking up a one way street* Willie Tee