Sunday, 26 March 2017

No Food!

Saturday 25 March 2017, Raunds Town 2 Olney Town 2 - United Counties League, Division1 - Kiln Park

For the second week running we went to a UCL Division One game for our football fix,easy to find and a large car park, the ground was easily good enough for this level and probably two levels up plus had a large clubhouse but trouble is no support!

The clubhouse just had a couple of supporters in it and the final crowd at the game just hit the 40 mark so the seated stand plus the covered terraces were easily big enough to cater for all of us - but many moved in the second half to the grass bank on the other side of the pitch. This seemed a great sun trap whilst the clubhouse side was like a wind tunnel.

Disappointingly the tea hut did not open till the 40th minute and then we found that there was no food - hot or cold! So I missed my regular Saturday afternoon burger,

The first half was evenly matched but the visitors were slightly  the better footballing team but it was Raunds who got the only goal and went in at the break one up.

Second half started in the same fashion but after 50 minutes the home side went two up and five minutes later the Olney number 9 saw red (he did look like he was past his sell by date) that should have been game over.

But 10 man Olney now dominated and soon were back on terms. the last 10 minutes saw a number of players also try to get an early bath - is there a problem with hot water at Raunds? The home goal keeper seemed to be one quite keen to leave the pitch early luck for Raunds he stayed on the pitch as in the 87th minute he stretched himself to save a penalty, ensuring the game finished all square.

What did amaze me was how the ref never sent any of the Olney bench off - they certainly were not a great advert for non-league football.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

'Pork Pie' army go home happy

Saturday 18 March 2017, Potton United 0 Melton Town 2 - The Hollow, United Counties League, Div 1

On league positions expected a home win but in the end the lads from the home of the Pork Pie won with ease, impressed not only with the way they played football but also their work effort.

Potton may have lost but they have got a lovely neat ground, a brick seated stand stand that was needed with the rain and a (posh but) welcoming clubhouse and reasonably priced burger and bovril. Add to that a programme with plenty to read in it and you can see that Potton are a well run club. But that did not help them today against a Melton side that just seemed to want it more.

Sunday, 12 March 2017

On their way to Portman Road?

Saturday 11 March 2017, Capel Plough 2 Leiston St Margaret's 0 - Suffolk Senior Cup, quarter final, Friars Playing Field

Cup match and great cake, what is there not to like about watching local non-league football. My third Senior Cup match of the season and all have been close and this one was also competitive but Capel never looked in any trouble after going in front.

A good set up at Capel, great little club house - mugs of tea, tasty cake and a bar! The pitch was over 100 metres away but was in good shape, plenty of grass and fully roped off. Surprised the crowd only hovered at about 30 as it is the quarter, Woodbridge got over 200 in the all  Eastern Counties League tie.

Match slightly spoilt at the end with two needless sending offs, not that you can blame the ref as neither player helped themselves. it looked like the trouble would spill over to include the two benches but the incident was soon forgotten and great to see a few minutes later at the end of the match, handshakes all round and the Leiston team wishing Capel good luck in the next round.

So will i be seeing Capel again in the final at Portman Road next month?

Friday, 10 March 2017

Quality pitch

9 March 2017, Beckenham Town 1 Crowborough Athletic 3- Eden Park Avenue, Southern Counties East League

The ground is beginning to look a bit tacky, the home team are near the bottom - but when you arrive you just can't believe how green the pitch is for this time of the year.

It was not just the pitch that was a nice surprise, Beckenham may be just one off the bottom and the visitors just one place from the top but what we saw was a very competitive game and  Crowborough had to work hard to get the three points.

Beckenham  have a talented young team maybe just need a bit more encouragement from their coaching team who just seemed to want to shout and moan at both the ref and their own players.

All in all, it was a good evening of football and really like the feel of the place, just hope they find enough to stay up.

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

One word - Poor!

Tuesday 7 March 2017, Ipswich Town 0 Wolverhampton Wanderers 0 - Championship, Portman Road

Maybe two words, very poor!

Monday, 6 March 2017

Sun, rain, hail, sun and more rain - typical match day at Playford Rd

Monday 6 March 2017, Ipswich Town Under 23s 2 Bristol City Under 23s 1 - Playford Rd Training Ground, Professional Development League.

Not a bad game, good win and we had various micro climate changes during the 90 minutes!

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Not as bad as it was (or as good as it has been)

Saturday 4 March 2017, Ipswich Town 1 Brentford 1 - Championship, Portman Road

Played better recently but still did not lose!

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Distant stand

Wednesday 1 March 2017, Wodson Park 2 Codicote 1- Spartan south Midlands League, Division 1, Wodson Park Athletics Ground

Not a bad game, 3 goals, 2 red cards and a friendly (if small crowd) but hard to like football grounds that are also athletic stadiums. Some do it well, Enfield and Hornchurch but some are cold bleak places- Croydon.

Not all bad at Wodson, a bar, tea and coffee and a good programme but the one stand - is big enough for their small crowds, it keeps the rain off, you can stand or sit but the big issue? It is over 60 metres from the pitch - with the track and 2 long jump pits )and  some grass) between the stand and the pitch. It could be worse! When I visited in the Summer the stand was placed down by the corner flag.

But at least Wodson have a home and far better than the G3 cgae next door where Ware