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I’ve waited at least 24 hours to do AFCW 1 Withdean 2005 2 and I still can’t really put my thoughts down adequately. Part of me thinks this was a complete pile of goat semen. After all, we haven’t exactly been CCL like this season. And yet part of me thinks that this is what tends to happen when you get promoted into a higher division. Remember, we haven’t actually lost a game since W&H away last season (and that was after we’d won the league, so that doesn’t count).

The thing that has grabbed me most is the reaction of quite a few people. It’s exactly the same vibe that we got when we were drawing against people like Corinthian Casuals last season (especially when we were 11 points clear and not exactly likely to do a Newk). You know the sort of thing, not enough skill, passing shite, players we’ve bought in are not as good as the ones got rid of etc etc.

So, a few rehashes of old SW19 stuff. We lost. Get over it. This won’t be the last time we lose a game. OK, losing to a goal that was so scrappy it was embarassing is a serious pisser, but this does tend to happen in a competitive league. Christ, for about the last 20 minutes I thought that it would have finished 3-1 to us.

Yes, some of our play was shite. Watched a Prem game recently? At the time I’ve written this, I’ve just watched one of the most tedious, boring, passionless Liverpool v Man U games in living memory. These are two highly skilled, professional teams. We are a bunch of amateurs who have just stepped up into a far higher division and have (for the most part) found the going reasonably tough. Teams like Worthing are settled. We’re not.

So some of our new boys aren’t performing (as heard on more than one occasion yesterday). And haven’t some of them come from higher divisions? Including an ex-QPR type? OK then, as repeated last season : if you’re good enough to have played at a a higher level, you obviously have some talent. Certainly enough for the RP. As said above, other teams are generally more settled than we are. Granted, some new players will not make it, that’s the chance you take with any signing. Did we need to get rid of a great deal of our squad? If you want to stay in the Ryman One for a long while, then no. And remember, there was one player last season getting some right stick. Can’t quite remember who he was, but I think Butler was his surname…

Yes, we’re on a bad run of form right now (worst in AFCW’s history I think). Because we’ve never had a bad run of form before of course – slipping from 1st to 12th in about a month in 86/87, OGEM’s tenure in the late 90s etc were obviously figments of my imagination. We’ll get going again, especially when most of our injuries clear up. I’ll be more worried if we look like relegation fodder.

And yes, DA’s comment’s were a little bit, well, strange. You should have heard the words coming out of his mouth 🙂 TBH I don’t know why he said them but I do think there’s a bit of media savvyness going on. Very few managers are loathe to criticise their players in public. Perhaps we ought to put on our old WFC tapes and remind ourselves that every so often, we may be defeated.

Needless to say, there’s something sad in the above comments. Not so much me writing them, more the fact that I fully expected to have to scribble them in the first place.

The game? Well, they bossed us early doors for fun and they scored with a header. We got back into it, Barry Moore scored with help from the goalie and they fucking got it in the last minute. Bastards.

And with that…

Plus points: We scored. Barry Moore’s free kick taking.

Minus points: They scored. Twice. Seem dead at the back. Shit passing. Unable to play for 90 minutes again.

The referee’s a…………: Sigh. Incidentally, who out there thought one of the linesmen was a woman? Seriously, from a distance, one of them looked remarkably like a female PE teacher/lesbian (were there any female PE teachers who weren’t dykes?). Couldn’t have been Wendy Toms though, the linesman had some vague idea of the offside rule.

Them: Best team played this season. Or rather, played well at the right time. Can’t believe the ex-Frannie didn’t get more abuse than he got. I expect a lot of people will be wanting comments about Alan Pook, so instead feel free to write your own opinions in the space provided below:



Song sung blue: We asked “are you Withdean in disguise?”. Judging by the way they beat us, obviously they are.

Point to ponder: How desperate are we to have RB playing? I can’t help thinking that normally he would have been out another week or so. Does make you wonder how much strength in depth we really have.

Truth is stranger than fiction: (1) The newly segregated bit for the Worthing fans. Somehow, I can’t help thinking that them being in the open diluted the atmosphere somewhat. (2) A well-known Womble with known dubious vision and typing skills winning some fitness award. Needless to say, he turned up for the game in ….. a car. (3) Spotted the new Wessex Wombles flag. Whatever happened to the old one? (4) The photographer who kicked the ball back onto the pitch and managed to take out the corner flag like a cricket stump. Rumours he will partner SS and RB are as yet unfounded.

Anything else? Not really. In an act of symbolism, the OS’s computer went haywire when they scored their 89th minuter. Oh, and who were those birds with the clipboards? Surely not another bit of AFCW fundraising…?

So, was it worth it? Gah.

In a nutshell: Redbridge is vital.