Elite 0 - 1 Sealords
On Christmas eve, in the winter of 1914, an armistice was agreed between British and German troops in the trenches near Ypres. They decided not to fire at each other for the day. Each side peeked over the edge of their trenches, popped their heads up, and no-one was shot.
Then, in a moment of pure madness, a football was kicked from the British side into No Man’s Land, and IT WAS ON. They cleared the bodies off the pitch and kicked off. Fifty players on each side, gangrene, shitty turn-of-the-century boots, bomb craters everywhere, probably some pretty serious shell-shock and PTSD, and A LOT OF MUD.
Our game was kind of like that. Really muddy. And one angry Irishman. Imagine being in the army with Decs: ‘get the f*ck over that hill,’ ‘f*ckin keep shooting,’ ‘stop f*cking shooting,’ ‘pass the bread, simple passes,’ etc.
We were fairly depleted due to the long weekend (thanks Jesus/Romans), so we had 10 regulars and a Scotsman called Gavin. Oh and the resurrected one himself, Jesus Crespo. But this was Good Friday, not Monday, and Friday went badly for Jesus.
Our enemy was Karori. Dirty shitty old Karori. Cold, damp, boring, should be annexed from Wellington old Karori. Just jokes Karori. To be fair they were a pretty good bunch of dudes, I thought.
Commander General Steve-o had the whistle, which he duly blew, and we were off!
What ensued was a quality advertisement for the “beautiful game”. The first half went pretty well in patches, when we got the passes going into space, but to be honest I can’t remember us creating any clear chances. But neither did they, and we were pretty happy to finish the half 0-0, since we were playing into the wind.
I just figured we would ping balls at their goal for most of the second half, and some of them would go in. Unfortunately by that point, however, the field, or at least the middle of it, was looking like the aforementioned No Man’s Land. It was fudging hard to know if the ball was going to skid on or stick in the water/mud. Many dodgy sliders were put in by both sides. Steve-o ruled his battlefield calmly, authoritatively, thereby preventing any escalation in hostilities. Well done that man.
Long story short, we just couldn’t get any passes going in the final third, let alone dozens of pinged shots at their goal. We did make a few chances, but we just couldn’t really get that final ball right.
But our defence did a great job at keeping them quiet too, and with time running out we were really pushing for the one goal that would surely settle this turgid affair.
And then, with about two minutes on the clock, one of their stocky Three Stooges-looking midfielders made a great run and was finally able to beat Rori (who had a solid game) at his near post. Bugger it all to hell.
It was a shame, because we were having our best period of the half at that point, and definitely looked the more likely to score.
CJ almost scored from a free kick, the last kick of the game, but it just went over the bar. Just one of those days I guess. A draw would have been fair – I think on balance we even slightly deserved the win. But that’s just the way the chocolate egg crumbles sometimes. It didn’t feel great, but we’ll beat them on the flippidy-flip!
Pretty hard to pick today actually. Some of the first half was a bit of a blur after I got fully balled on the side of the head. I thought the whole defence did a super job, and the centre of the pitch was an absolute nightmare, so those in the middle did really well too.
2 – Angus. Cleaned up those durrrty Karorians all damn day.
2 – CJ. Formed a bloody good looking partnership with young Angus. Like Yoga and Luke.
1 – Damo. He was everywhere, man.
1 – Decs. Battled really hard in the middle, which looked more like a peat bog than a footy pitch.
Happy Easter from ’Straya!