Match Report – Shrewsbury School 1st XI v LRAFC 1st XI
Brett ‘injury prone’ Phipps
Liam Statham Doherty
Lee Dick Whittingham
Greg ‘Wonder Goal’ Blease
Ed ‘Shelf-no-Longer’ Williamson
Harry ‘Fat Arse’ Howat
Ben ‘Bum Chin’ Phillips
Louis Static Holt
So the time came to dust off the old boots and reform to apply the steamroller effect with the teams weight increasing significantly following the summer break.
A perfect pitch was greeted by perfect conditions, with generous moisture allowing for none intrusive surface conditions, no excuses for Rambler like touches. It was clear that Williamson had taken part in some serious health kicks post season, as it was becoming increasingly apparent that his shelf was getting dangerously close to overtaking a static caravan like appearance. I am pleased to report that he can now see the tip of his pencil at peak arousal.
Some well-constructed team warm up exercises left half the team knackered before kick-off, except for ‘Fat Arse’ Howat, who could only manage swinging his cumbersome left leg to ‘warm’ up the keeper. It must be said that it is nice to see a keeper who is able to elevate himself further than 2 inches off the ground. Legend says that Bagpuss was spotted leaning on a nearby goalpost wearing a former Nazi military outfit.
A quick and slick start from a well put together Shrewsbury side took the youthful Ramblers team by surprise, and it was clear that the summer had certainly taken its toll for the organisation skills of some. A quick goal from sloppy set piece marking allowed the young pillow bitters to take a quick and well deserved lead. It was now that we were going to see what this newly put together team was going to be made of. 0-1.
As soon as physicality was brought to the match, there was a clear reluctance from Shrewsbury to engage with the ‘more developed’ members of the ramblers. The towering back three of Wise, Doherty & Duffy soon took control of the lacklustre efforts of the Shrewsbury Strikers. This quickly allowed some smart play from the back including linking play from Williamson and width shown from Howat & Phillips, Howat in more ways than one. The work rate of Phillips allowed Holt the lone striker to ensue his natural game of limited movement and maximum effort to catch and maim any opposition in striking distance.
Some superb wing play allowed for our first open opportunity, which was sweetly stuck by White, who rocketed the ball onto the near post, which rapidly fired it back into the box. Of course perfectly positioned and thankful that he did not have to move an inch, Holt with catlike reactions smartly volleyed the ball back into the open net. 1-1.
This quickly allowed us to regain majority of the possession, and chances were coming thick and fast, mainly with the prowess of Howat on the wing, who decisively managed to squeeze his newly acquired ‘fat arse’ between the touch-line and the defender who was surprisingly smaller than he was, not a mean feat. It was soon after the equaliser that Blease found himself in a position, where no sane man would even dare attempt the audacity this goal demanded. A clever chip from White forced Blease to neatly take down the ball with a death like touch, followed by a delightful dink over the ever approaching Keeper, only to precisely nestle the ball in the top left hand corner, all from just outside the box. Promising talent, however all will be told when it comes to the boat race in a couple of weeks time. 2-1.
The pendulum had clearly swung in the blue and gold direction, and this was soon taken advantage of, as Holt turned his man following a scrappy corner, and the team were rewarded with a distinct point to the spot. Holt stepped up to slot his 4th penalty in a row, some thought his dead ball days were over….in the distinct words of Ricky Tomlinson ‘My Arrrse’. 3-1.
The half-time whistle came at the wrong moment for the 1stXI and a lengthy break destroyed all momentum that the visitors held. Whittingham supplied the team with some inspired motivation, “Liam do we have a sub?”
Doherty dumbfounded by the question, responded “Yes”
Lee paused for suspense “Lads, we have a sub”.
Shrewsbury, fresh from a bollocking and the threat of a ban from the tuck shop, 3 strikes with the cane, and 20 minutes alone with the Chaplain; they came out all guns blazing, and clear fitness issues started to set in for the Ramblers.
Some sloppy midfield play gave the opposition their first proper break of the game, and following one of the most outrageous decisions seen in recent times, a penalty was awarded to the home team. A brave attempt saw the well-struck ball just prove too strong for the leaping Phipps, who got a decent hand to it. 3:2.
A couple of changes saw Phillips back on the pitch, suiting Holt’s non-movement policy; who at the time was far too occupied with destroying an increasingly annoying centre back, to think about scoring a hatrick. White started to make more intrusive runs down the right wing, being fed by Whittingham and Wise alike. He was unlucky not to find the net on a couple of occasions. Some superb efforts in the middle from Williamson, Phillips and great leadership from our most experienced defenders, Doherty & Duffy, allowed for a smooth run into the final whistle, with little worry of an equaliser. Credit of course goes to our ever supportive off field captain, Mr. Hooper! The dream still lives ‘This is our f*****g Year’!!
Under orders to train for boat race with immediate effect:
Under orders to get to peak fitness and loose further summer weight:
Shrewsbury School 1st XI (2 – 3) Liverpool Ramblers AFC 1st XI
Holt x 2
|September 8, 2018||2:15 pm||1st XI Fixtures||2018-19|
|21 Ashton Rd, Shrewsbury SY3, UK|