Ah, now that was a bit more like it. Heathrow 4 Stansted 1, Jon Main finding the net again – not once but twice, Danny Kedwell opening his league account, and the sort of performance we saw in August and what we hope – nay, expect – to see on a more regular basis.
Welcome back, it’s been too long coming. This was just so different to this time last week, or at H&Y, or Worcester. Make no mistake, when they went a goal up, you did raise your eyebrows, sighed and thought it was deja vu again. Yet today, that feeling hardly lasted. Whereas in previous games we went 1-0 down you just knew, today just stung us. It really was a “how dare you fucking score against us?” type approach. It must have been that sort of day when we even scored from a corner to equalise.
Was this even close this game? Not really. OK, there’s always that feeling that when you don’t score when you’re on top, you tend to let it slip. Maybe that would have been the case had JM not headed over their keeper, but by that stage it was the closest you’ll ever get to a when, not if you score type situation.
Speaking of JM, is it possible to see the emotion of relief? If it is, then you got a damn good view of it. This was the old JM, the JM that cost so much it forced banks to be nationalised. There was an sense of inevitability that he’d get his second goal, and if there’s ever video of it, it was a classic style back-to-goal-turn-and-shoot moment. If truth be told, he was heading back in the right direction on Tuesday. Today, he got what he deserved and what we all wanted.
Come to think of it, the forward line linked up very well, including DK and the much-maligned Sam Hatton. And Kennedy. And Hussey. DK scoring really did put the proverbial icing on the Mr Kipling, and I’m glad he scored. Even though he played in the way we expected him to, but if he’d gone much longer without scoring in the league then the questions would have started. And yes, I know I intimated he was an expensive flop last week at Dover. TBH he didn’t exactly prove otherwise back then. Today of course is another day.
Which does make me wonder if we need a couple of games at KM to get back into the swing of things? There was that nice feeling afterwards, which granted you always get when it’s a good win. It was the same we had against Maidenhead in the last league game all them weeks ago. We have a good chance of motoring on against Big Spending H&W on Tuesday, and again – it’ll be criminal if we were to let that slip after such a decent performance.
Last week, we really did look like we’d been on the road once too often. Today saw a 3000+ turnout, everyone in genuinely high spirits and it’s clear the team responded to that. One thing that does concern me though – will we rely on that too much? If you want a churlish comment, here it is : yet again, we have to come a goal down, whilst going in level at HT. OK, I’m being a little bit unfair here, as BS were effectively given a goal start. But wouldn’t be nice if for just once, we could win this sort of game, playing as well as we did, and ending it 4-0?
Anyway, enough of that. Enjoy this evening, and up until Tuesday where we have to do it all over again…..
Plus points: We won. Comprehensive performance. Defence looked more assured as the game went on. JM’s two goals. DK’s goal. Sam Hatton’s goal. Way we picked ourselves up. The last half hour. Looking totally different from Dover last Saturday. Return of Elliot Godfrey.
Minus points: Their penalty. Jake Leberl’s sending off.
The referee’s a……: To quote somebody today, he’s going home in Bishop’s Stortford’s coach. Really pissed people off with his decisions, though whenever we win like that I find it hard to get angry with him. Of course, had we’d lost…
Them: Shit, basically. OK, they got a penalty in the first three minutes, and maybe should have capitalised on how stunned we were afterwards. But really, when we settled down again it almost got quite painful to watch. They had something like one on-target (the penalty) and one off-target and that was about it. Even when we were down to ten men, they looked more likely to concede than us. Just proves that really, there’s nothing to worry about in this division if we get our mentality right. Had to resort to kicking us a fair bit when they were 1-0 up and with ten minutes gone, that’s how bad they were. Not too many of them, those who did turn up apparently reminded us that we have no history. Oh, and what’s with those bloody horns which they took in? Normally those things aren’t allowed in – not because you can hit somebody with them, but because they don’t half get annoying….
Point to ponder: As I’ve given them a rough time this past couple of weeks, it’s only fair that I redress the balance. Are DK and JM finally starting to click? They looked like they really enjoyed carving through the BS defence, and indeed last week Kedwell said how much better he feels playing at AFCW than Grays. OK, footballers always say that sort of thing, although he does look like a player far happier in himself. One may question what future for Belal, CS and Dean Mason. Well, last season we lost JM for a fair chunk of the season, and Elliott Godfrey only came back today, so there’s definitely scope for those three to stick around. Neither JM, DK or Godfrey will play every game, nor will they play well for 90 minutes of every game. But our fringers must take their chances when they pop up, they may not get them too often
Meet the manager: Well, I did have an interview with him. Trouble is, it’s on my phone (a brand new Samsung) and I can’t get it onto my computer. So you’ll have to do with the Surrey Comet report unless some kind soul is prepared to let me send them the file on their phone and they email it to me. Please? Shame I can’t get it, because he was quite upbeat. There was a bit in the interview where TB commented about Main changing his boots to his old ones, a sort of modern day version of Billy’s Boots from Roy of the Rovers. I thought he was taking the piss until I read this in the SLP…
Truth is stranger than fiction: (1) The bloke behind me in the first half who kept saying “bring on the trumpets”. No, I don’t know why either. Sir, if you are listening – it’s not funny. Especially after the tenth time you say it. (2) 3072 there. Decent crowd, even after a mini-slump. Maybe people really were glad to get back to KM? (3) AFCW scoring from corners. Next people won’t be slagging off the much maligned Sam Hatton…… (4) Some poshe chef who apparently is famous (though I’ve genuinely never heard of him) hawking his wares beforehand for a TV programme. Rumours abound that pigeon pie was on the menu. At least issues of main stand hygene are now sorted out, and with a new revenue stream through the tea bars as well.
Anything else? Yeah. I noticed some of those anti-racism stickers about today, so presumably they were doing an awareness campaign. Question is – why? As far as I know we don’t have a big problem with it – it’s simply isolated cases where it does happen, and that’s as much an issue in society as anywhere else. Not suggesting at all that every AFCW fan is a 100% committed multicultralist, and there have been a couple of rather obnoxious comments in the past by a handful….
Truth is, I don’t think these sort of campaigns really have much effect. Maybe in the past it would. Just dig out your 1986/87 tape of Everton in the FAC and you’ll hear the monkey chants from the Scousers. Not to mention Newcastle fans in 1988. But now? We’re all used to people of different coloured skin playing week in, week out, and those who still want to make racist comments now are the ones who are IME too ignorant to ever be reached anyway. If it still exists, it’s mainly anti-Jewish (aimed at Spurz) and anti-Irish stuff (both for some reason never gets picked up). By and large though, society generally has changed – these days at Stamford Bridge the likes of Drogba and Essien are cheered. In the past, half their support would have deliberately ignored their goals, as demonstrated by certain league tables in NF publication “The Flag”.
My guess for this latest campaign is a result of what was supposedly sung at Sol Campbell, though without wishing to go over much trodden old ground, it was referring to his known bouts of depression and his alleged bum banditry. Dubious? Yup. Bad taste? Certainly. Racist? Nope. And even if it was, the very fact that it’s made the news shows how rare it is now…
So, was it worth it? Indeed.
In a nutshell: More of the same please. Go on, you know you want to.