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I don’t know what it was about Corinthians 0 Sao Paulo 3 but there was a distinctive CCLness about the game. An eerily quiet atmosphere (are we saving our vocal chords for Saturday?), a bit of a run through the motions at times, a comprehensive victory and a willing opposition to boot as well. And their kit was bloody horrible.

The game? Well, it was the sublime Robert Ursell who opened proceedings. Basically, he had a shot on the edge of the area which bounced off a defender. Ball came to him again, and whether he volleyed I don’t know but he lined up a shot and sent it crashing into the net. 1-0 and from then you just knew that victory was ours (told you there was CCLness about the game). Soon after that, we put the game beyond any sort of reach by making it 2-0. Much maligned Richard Butler again tested the water (so to speak) from outside the box, and what do you know? Bet it looked good on the DVD.

Second half really wasn’t much to write home about. Even that smelly dead horse at the Labour party conference (no, not Cherie Blair, I mean the one the pro-hunt people left) showed a bit more life. Mind you, those who could see the game would have seen Robert Ursell netting a third. Good strike as well, apparently. Me, I was listening to the rather drunk Wombles attempting to sing Ursell’s name to the groundbreaking (?) 2 Unlimited track “No Limits”.

Meanwhile, back in the real world…

Plus points: A win. Away. Clean sheet. Robert Ursell is God/Allah/Satan.

Minus points: Bit dull.

The referee’s a: Didn’t exactly wind the crowd up last night. Then again, I don’t think an anthrax attack would have had much of an effect. Somebody saw the lino do what looked suspiciously like a wanker sign. Hardly in the Corinthian spirit, but at least it beats waving his flag when there’s an infringement.

Them: Corinthian Casuals are one of those sort of teams who have a book of their history in places like Sportspages. Their bar has big pictures of them in places like Brazil (I think Corinthians have something to do with our opponents last night) and South Africa. In other words, anyone who knows about football in this country knows the name CC. As for the 2004 incarnation, nice enough hosts, reasonably priced (although there were no concessions in the stand) and even gave me a pint of Guinness for £2. Don’t ask. Their goalie looked like a 19 year old who had just started work in an insurance company. Played like one as well.

Point to ponder: What’s the betting that Robert Ursell won’t be an AFCW player come the end of the season? Think it will be inevitable – and not to mention a valuable re-education to AFCW fans – that he will depart if he shows this vein of form. As long as we’ve got in on some sort of deal that we get money for him, I can cope with that. Remember, we ARE a lowly non-league club…

Truth is stranger than fiction: (1) Not getting to find out whether the old CC diktat of missing penalties for “unsportingness” still existed. (2) JS playing more than 60 minutes without dying. (3) JS playing more than 60 seconds without dying. (4) Was our goalie really made to take his cycling shorts off for not being regulation coloured?

Anything else? I realised just how near SW19 Towers is to CC’s ground. It’s quite amazing how near a lot of these grounds are. For example, I used to pass CC’s ground (and Croydon Athletic’s ground as well) on a regular basis without knowing, and I’m sure others have their own particular grounds as well. I’m going to be bold and suggest that I much prefer this level to the CCL…

So, was it worth it? Yup

In a nutshell: What a shame we didn’t play this game at the Oval. Think about it…