FC Blanchardstown 1 v 1 IBM Oldbrook - Railway Union, 3rd July 1997.
A remarkable turnaround from last week,to say the least. Oldbrook are always the toughest of tough opponents. In fact, so tough are they, that they are current holders of the "World Toughness Competition", holding off competition from Hard McTough, former three times champion. They seem to be able to replace one big donkey of a defender(Flor Brosnan) with another (John "Leave it out!" Hunt), though so creaky were the joints of Goalkeeper Michael McSweeney, that I could hear them squeak at my end of the pitch.
Anyhow, enough of them. On to our team. We actually had one. Along with our normal bunch of stalwarts were 5 brand new, freshly minted new boys. I occurred to me early on, that we might have..............ummmmm..........what do you call them?.............Oh yeah! Substitutes! That's it. It's been so long.
Anyway, the match was a typical IBM derby encounter. Loads of endeavour, but little art. A long range effort from John Hunt, followed by a long range 5 yard toe poke from Steve levelled things out. But we did have the luxury of putting people on, and pulling people off......Well, I didn't pull anyone off personally, but I was in goal. Anyhow, special awards go to Stephen Boyce for his hero/villian - Score/miss a sitter activities, and to Sean Prior, winner of the "Player least likely to stay in his position for any amount of time". Well done boys.....
FC Blanchardstown 5 v 1 Iona - Three Rock Rovers, 8th July 1997.
FC Blanchardstown 1 v 2 ITG - Three Rock Rovers, 15th July 1997.
To say that last night's match ended disappointingly is like saying "Jason Dozzel is a poor footballer". We know the truth is much worse than this........
Having played the majority of our games in Railway Union, the game in TRR felt like a bit of an away match. It certainly felt that way for the four players who turned up 10 minutes after kickoff. I always feel it's a good idea to start with only 8 men against a team that put 5 past us the last time.
Fortunately, ITG were so keen to hammer 71 goals past us before the cavalry arrived, that they actually failed to score at all. Perhaps we should always play with 8 men. Anyway, as always happens with us, as soon as we had a full team, things got no better. With the half-time whistle beckoning a corner came whizzing into the IBM box. Cruise called to collect it, but a defender kindly flicked it on past him, but that still doesn't explain what the F**k Sean Prior was doing when he caught the ball. He tried to convince the referee that we were playing "last man back", but the ref wasn't having any of it. Fortunately, the ref was so stunned, as was everyone, that no-one took any action for Sean's "accidental handball"....
Anyway, as you would expect, Cruise saved the penalty, even though Prior wanted to go in goals as he reckoned he had his hand-eye co-ordination working well. The half-time whistle went, and we went off feeling very lucky indeed.
The feeling that we'd weathered the worst of it seemed to be true, as about 7 minutes into the second half, one of our new muppets.............er I mean signings, Brendan Trainingclass curled a lovely free kick into the top corner of the ITG net.
Our lads then decided it would make for more interesting football to let the ITG lads have another go at this scoring lark, and the IBM was peppered. In fact peppered is an understatement. It was peppered, glazed, covered in tinfoil, placed on a backing tray and left to cook at Gas Mark 4. But to no avail, IBM remained only a few minutes away from what would be an amazing victory. There were goalmouth scrambles aplenty and several times, balls hit ITG hands (accidentally) without recrimination. So it was particularly disappointing that their equalising goal came with about 4 mintes to go. A corner swung in (prior had his hands in his pockets), ITG won the header, it fell to another ITG player who certainly "appeared" to control it with his arm. The ref didn't notice and hey presto, it was 1-1. IBM were still fuming over this, when in the last minute an ITG backheel hit off an IBM arm, much like what had happened a few minutes ago. Except of course, this one was spotted and a penalty was awarded. I would love to say that I saved it, but it was a nicely taken penno, right in the corner, and there it ended. Gutted, angry, disappointed, melancholy, dismayed, sick as a parrot, distraught etc etc etc. We can't give out about ITG as they played hard but fair for the whole game and on chances and posession will feel they got what they deserved. It's also considered bad form to give out about the referee so..........................................................................Never let it be said I gave out about the ref.
Anyone up for a game of Handball??
FC Blanchardstown 0 v 5 Corel - Railway Union, 22nd July 1997.
Ok, so last night, we had a full team, we had a strong team, we arrived on time, we were ready to start on time, the weather was nice, we were coming off 3 pretty good performances, so of course, we were very confident. Ahem...........
For the last 5 minutes of the game, when I finally gave up trying to see the ball and gave up hollering at people, I began to mentally write the match report. As it happens, I had to mentally rip it up 3 or 4 times. Instead I tried to think of how many different meanings to the word 'Bad' there are. I don't mean 'Bad' as in "He's a Bad mother(shut your mouth!)..."
I mean: Appaling, useless, terrible, less-than-good, just not on really, poor etc etc etc..
Anyway, after coming up with over 500 variations on that word, I decided to try and come up with various synonyms for our performance, so here's what I came up with: We were as sturdy as jelly, we had the style of the Bay City Rollers, we were as fresh as the canteen salad, we were as impressive as the Tory party (ooh! politics!), as inspired as an Oasis song and as lively as a Keith Lynch nightshift......
The one good things, is that a lot of our new players were under the impression that we were a reasonably good team, so it's nice to set them straight on that.....
Tune in next week to see if we can reach our goal of "Most lopsided goal difference ever"..............
FC Blanchardstown 1 v 3 AIG - Railway Union, 29th July 1997.
FC Blanchardstown 0 v 1 JBA - Railway Union, 5th August 1997.
Did you know that there are actually 5 people in Wet Wet Wet, and they just never show the other guy in any of their pictures or TV appearances because he's much older than they are? True fact.
Oh yeah, the game......
Well, I'm sure absolutely everyone who's played JBA this year, and walked off after being beaten has thought "They weren't that good, I'm sure we could have beaten them". Well, it's certainly how I feel whenever I play them, but I always walk off with the same result. I guess that says something. In fact I guess it shows how bad I am at remembering anything but useless pop music trivia.
Anyway, we all knew the hike from Blanchardstown to Ballinteer would be a long one, and tough to make for 7:00. So I was impressed when I heard that 3 people had managed to make it for the correct time. Playing a european style 1-1-1, we reckoned we could hold JBA off until the cavalry arrived, or failing that, until some more players arrived. As it happened, the referee was good enough not to show up at all, mainly because he was locked in the boot of Don Gormley's car. Some chap from Corel was kind enough to referee the game, and in my opinion, his reluctance to refer to the whistle too much, made for a much better and open game (isn't it Ironic, don't ya think?).
Oh, the game, yeah. Well with about 10 minutes to go (the kick off of the 2nd half basically), JBA tried the tactic of running forward with the ball. This was unfortunate, as our defence had just initiated a running-backwards race at the same time (very concerned with their fitness, you understand). This gave the JBA player: "Cash" (quote of the match from John McCarthy: "How many players called Cash did they have on their team?") ample time to pick his spot. When he was finished picking his spots, he had a shot and verily, it went in.
We came close in the very last second when Paul "The towering Inferno" Somers hit a great header which forced a great save from the JBA Keeper (Didn't look like Terence, but I couldnt be sure), and that was it.
Well I'm off to Greece next week. Who wants a postcard. Rudie or non-rudie?
FC Blanchardstown 1 v 3 AutoDealing - Railway Union, 14th August 1997.
FC Blanchardstown 1 v 2 FMS - Railway Union, 19th August 1997.
FC Blanchardstown 1 v 1 IBM Burlington - Railway Union, 28th August 1997.
FC Blanchardstown 1 v 1 Continuum - Railway Union, 2nd September 1997.
FC Blanchardstown 2 v 4 QV2 - Three Rock Rovers, 9th September 1997.
Well, all good things come to an end, and it would also appear that all highly mediocre things must come to an end at some point too. It's just that less people notice when this happens. This was the case last night when IBM arrived with the bare 11 and two supporters (the mostly ever present Mary Flanagan), and QV2 arrived with 74 substitiutes, 500 supporters, a news team and a group of cheerleaders (much to their disappointment, I was playing in goal, so they couldn;t check out my tanned legs).
Well, onto the game. The last time we played QV2, a 9 person team went down 6-1 to a highly cocky QV2 side (you know how difficult it is to beat 9 men). So we were determined to show QV2 that we were a better team than that. This is why it was so disheartening to concede a goal within a minute.........To further our misery, we went 2-0 with QV2's second shot of the game, about 10 minutes into the game. It was pretty even stuff for the rest of the half, until "that"moment. A moment, that, more than any other moment, defines our season, and how things have gone for us. After a prolonged goalmouth scramble, the ball appeared to be finally heading over the line, when Paul "Hand of God" Somers managed to do an "Alistair" and palm it off the line and into orbit. The referee was about the only person who didn't see this infringement, so QV2 were very grateful to DONG GORMLEY (sp?) for catching the dropping ball when he "heard" a whistle. Much to our surprise, the referee spotted that particular infringement and called for a penalty.....nice one Don.
With the score at 3-0 at half time, things looked grim.....so it was nice that we have at least been consistent that way all season.
The second half was a whole different kettle of underpants. QV2 had us under immediate pressure and decided they were sick of shooting at the nets and would aim for the woodwork instead. So it came as a complete shock to me when Adrian Maguire got hold of the ball and came up with the idea of putting the ball over the keeper, rather than at his chest, and hey presto, 3-1!!. About 7 minutes after that, a looping ball into the back by "Towering Inferno" Somers led to something or other happning on the goal line(it was a long way away for me), which resulted in a goal for Andrew McCarthy (I think?). Were FCB on the brink of a historic comeback? Would we be handing the title to JBA? Hell no! you can't rely on us for anything. A nicely organised defensive mix up gave the red-headed QV2 striker (he's the QV2 player who didn't foul so much). Took his chance very well, and that was it. 4-2. A game that you could accurately describe as "Our last game of the season"...........