The midweek pressure was building for new manager Sam Edgar, the press was having a field day. “Has Edgar only got his tactical know-how from watching Jose in the Spurs Doc?” “How will his iconic 3-5-2-1 formation adapt in such a fast paced league?” and “how did he maintain such good hairline despite the stresses caused by each week’s team selections?” Questions were being asked of this fledgling tiffs 3s side. After a scrappy 1-0 loss to Old Sutts last week, which we can all agree, including Old Sutts, was a fat load of BS! The 3s needed a statement win to get the board off their back, and by Jove, that’s exactly what they intended to do.
The match was scheduled for a 2pm kick off, being the consummate professional he is, the Skipper arrived early at a respectable 12.45pm, only to be met by resident tattoo enthusiast Dom Lundie, who had arrived 45 mins prior (talk about keen) “ello ello ello, what ave’ we ‘ere then” Lundie probably said (he’s a policeman). Despite his best efforts to convince Sam otherwise, Lundie was starting on the bench with a “keen” fine already noted by the fines committee.
With The 3s sufficiently warm, Edgar lulled the opposition into a false sense of security by intentionally losing the toin coss, the Tiffs boys smirked as Edgar was clearly playing 4D chess mind games, and it was working! The opposition were already crumbling like dry feta cheese on a nicoise salad. Delicious!
The mighty tiffs then immediately went 1-0 down after 10 mins play.
Tiffs were dominating the early stage of play, forcing multiple corners, they were practically living rent free in the oppositions box. However, this one sided tenancy agreement was about to backfire, as the bad guys managed to sneak a counter attack and the Sinjuns striker was tripped by Tiffs keeper, Josh Rose.
The ref deliberated, but gave the pen. Josh felt it was a soft pen so told the ref to f*** off…with his eyes.
The Sinjuns captain stepped up and cooly slotted it away. 1-0. How ever did it come to this?
The purps (wearing a dazzling white kit today) didn’t let their head drop, and came back strong. With Tiffs attacker Stevie Dwyer coming very close to getting his goal scoring tally for the season up and running, only to be denied by the keeper, could it be the thought of a “no hattrick” fine was looming over him and put him off? or worse, another “shite man” fine?
A further attempt by right back prodigy, George Sullivan, which had all the hallmarks of being a Stevie G thunder volley from outside the box, was sent flying over the protective netting behind the goal. The fine was noted.
The revelation of the day came from little and large combo, Jeremy Eggar and James Khaj, Jeremy was a man possessed running all over the park, cutting out every loose ball like an overworked urologists, leading from the back, putting big headers in and even bigger tackles, to quote jez “if you watch the game you don’t see jez, if you watch jez, you see the game” And as for khaj? Well…Khaj was also there.
Tiffs then won a free kick with winger Gary Flynneker getting fouled 5 yards from the corner flag. Upstepped set piece extraordinaire, Rob ‘Beckham SWAZ’ Palmer. Placing the ball on the corner of the box, much to the chagrin of Sinjuns, (to their Singrin?) The Purps all shuffled awkwardly in the box, as Rob had clearly stolen about 10 yards, and they didn’t want to admit it to the oppo.
What happened next was a moment of sheer footballing beauty. In the second between the whistle and him striking the ball, Rob eyed the keeper up and down, he then took note of the wind, the curvature of the ball, the glare in the keepers eyes, the distance of goal to ball, the positioning of the defenders, the velocity required, the swaz tekkers needed to place it in the toppest of bins.
The ball was his canvas and his foot the brush, in one motion the artist stroked the ball with the poise of a prime Morten Gamst Pedersen. Time seemed to stop as the ball glided through the air. Now, bin day is usually Tuesday morning but in this case, it was Saturday afternoon, as that ball blasted straight into TOP (top middle) BINS.
The crowd erupted. Rob went crazy. Screaming to the heavens that it was “the proudest day of my life” it really was a spectacular goal from recent first time father Rob Palmer.
Flynn was fouled for the freekick so can he claim that assist? This anonymous writer certainly thinks so!
Rob then got another free kick and blasted it over the protective netting. Life sure comes at you fast in the AFC Division 6 South.
And thus the first half concluded.
To be continued….
It was definitely a game of two halves, Like all league matches of Football.
Tiffs started well. Dylan Brillante and Aaron Elwood worked wonders down the wing with Stevie Dwyer up top, and Billy Zeqiri slotted just behind.
The defence was proving vital, with full backs George, Rob, and Ben snuffing out every attack and Dom Lundie cleaning up every airkick that the gaffer threw at him, whilst keeper Josh was making impressive saves.
Surely a goal would come soon? Lundie then played the ball to midfield maestro Billy and with the deftest of touches, Bill threaded it through to Flynnadine Zidane who was clear on goal. One on one with the keeper, with so much time on his hands, Flynn had the opportunity to place it either side of the keeper, but took the unconventional “straight at the keeper” route. Still no goals from open play for the 3s, but it didn’t matter though as Victor Flynndalof was brought down moments later in the oppos box, and up stepped Bill, who elegantly slotted it bottom corner (I think, I didn’t actually see the PK, I was limping off at that point).
The game was in its dying embers, in true Jose style, Tiffs had one agenda, PARK. THAT. BUS. Then Up stepped Marathon man and MMA enthusiast Ben ‘Mayweather’ Lewis. Who, in a stroke of tactical genius, decided to RKO James Khaj, a time wasting masterclass.
Like khajs exploded eye Sinjuns tried to apply pressure, but to no avail.
The whistle blew and Tiffs came away with 3 delicious points.
Final Score. Sinjuns Grammarians IV 1 – 2 Old Tiffinians III
Man of the Match brought to you by Sam the Handyman
Tom Kevflynn De Bruyne Flynn