After Maidenhead 0 Motorhead 4, I was wondering if I could get away with putting down my actual thoughts during the match. Namely, it was one of the worst 4-0 victories I can remember for some time, and how Maidenhead should have been 4-3 down by the hour mark.
Then I read the table…..
Seriously, I think I must be underestimating ourselves right now. I didn’t realise that Maidenhead were so high up (as in, legit playoff contenders), and was the sort of testy game that really does make or break a season. OK, you expect us to piss all over teams like Fisher and Bognor. But Maidenhead on their own patch? A potential Heybridge Swifts type game awaited, certainly…
Funny thing is, unlike many others I didn’t think we were that special. Which either says one of two things : either I have such a negative view of life that I cannot comprehend any sort of decent performance, or our potential is so frightening that our ordinary is most teams best. Bit of both, if truth be told. For a lot of the first half, certainly, it was like the Dorchester game (and yes, I know I didn’t write a report. I couldn’t be arsed) Were we hitting a rough patch when we pulled ourselves back into the Champions Elect slipstream? Of course, the much maligned Sam Hatton delivered a wonderstrike of a free kick from outside the box and the rest is history…
Well, I’d like to portray it as us going up a gear and dismantling the opposition to the point of humiliation. Thing is, today we gave our defence a nice test. And to be fair, we had a clean sheet and learnt how to throw ourselves at the ball. But really – if it wasn’t for the fact that we have that sharpness up front that I honestly believe no team in the CS has, this could have been Dorchester again. Or worse. And my ticker and underpants would be putting in official letters of complaint to TB’s office.
If, if, IF….. we go up at the end of the season (preferably as champions), it will be down to our forward line. We probably had about two or three opportunities in the first half, yet probably put the game out of reach. Is that the sign of a team going up? We’ll find out by May. But as Dorchester proved, split up the Main/Kedwell partnership and we don’t nearly look so potent. Belal really looked Ryman Prem level on Tuesday, and Dean Mason and Chris Sullivan have gone AWOL. Maybe we ought to persuade Nic McDonnel to join us again, just in case? Bromley have released him, and he does at least know the ropes at AFCW. Just wonder if he’ll be happy to sit on the bench…
Back to today. I think what happened today is par for the course this season – slow start, then we get a foothold into the game and turn the screw. Sometimes it pays off immediately, other times we have to keep plugging away. The games I’ve seen us lose this season were where we never got going from the off. That’s not a crime – well, it is if you’re pushing for the title – and it’s going to be nigh on impossible to win every single week from now until May.
But games like the Maidenheads are the ones you do have to win to be up there. Winning 4-0 as well is a bit of a statement of intent as well : at the last home game, TB said that he wants us to put real pressure onto those who hold the top spot this season. Do that and anything can happen. Not only that, but we’re now just three points off the top spot. If we slip back, it’s not insurmountable, because it’s a gap that just needs a good weekend to put it in contention should we fuck up the week before. It’s still waaaay too early to call this season, bar a run of wins/defeats and Chelmsford doing the opposite, and this should go down to the wire. I said should….
It does seem that the momentum we lost at Dorchester started to regain itself the longer this game went on. And with the weather unlikely to cause much havoc from now until May (famous last words) and skillfully manoevering ourselves out of pesky little tournaments of the FAC and FAT to avoid a backlog, we should have a clear run. One thing is certain now – it’s fast approaching the business end of the season. Time to put up or shut up – and perhaps maybe, just maybe, we’re not planning on being silenced just yet.
While you get over that uncalled-for burst of optimism…
Plus points: We won. Away. Clean sheet. Jon Main. Danny Kedwell. Kept going without actually playing that special. Defence got some much needed practice and learnt how to kick the ball away. Dwayne Lee.
Minus points: Defence got a bit too much needed practice at times.
The referee’s a….: There were many similarities between him and Steven Cook as it goes. Firstly, they’re both young. Secondly, er, their first name had a vowel in it…… Gave Maidenhead too many free kicks for my liking. Anyone would have thought he felt sorry for them.
Them: Actually, the ref isn’t the only one who could feel a twang of sympathy for them. Seriously, if you were a neutral, you would say they deserved at least one goal. Then again, if you get that many chances but contrive to miss every single one of them (bar Pullen’s top draw save, although we were 3-0 up by then), don’t come running to me for sympathy. Sadly didn’t treat us to two of their players falling out with each other on the field this season, although apparently their #9 was in tears afterwards. Off the pitch, although their ground is showing its age it is fast becoming a favourite venue for us. Â£9 entrance fee is certainly welcome, and they even gave out ticket stubs. Which might stop the usual whinging which too many of our fans always come out with after every single fucking away game…
Point to ponder: I think we’ve had enough games now to make this observation without being BBB – is it me or are BSS defences shit? Seriously, we’ve had a helluva lot of games where we’ve scored over three in ninety minutes – a quick glance at the OS suggests that we’ve got three goals in no less than eleven games. And of those games where we won but got just one or two goals, a lot of them were down to us simply not finishing the job up front (think Basingstoke away). I know I shouldn’t say it, because it does unfairly detract from our general goalscoring prowess and is a bit presumptuous, but I have been quite disappointed with the standard of the BSS. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve enjoyed the six months we’ve been here so far, a lot, lot more than three years in Turdeyland. But we really shouldn’t be winning games like today 4-0. Not that I’m complaining.
Three’s a crowd: 1296. Although it did seem a bit bigger in the second half for some reason.
Truth is stranger than fiction: (1) PA playing Dukes of Hazard theme tune for some reason. Mind you, it also played Tom Hark – the original version, not the Piranhas version you all know. (2) Isn’t Maidenhead town centre shit? It doesn’t have the charm of Dorchester, yet isn’t big enough to have little nooks and crannies. They had the cheek to label Wimbledon as Britain’s biggest clone town last week (though to be fair I hardly pop into SW19 itself, because if we’re being honest – Wimbledon town centre is pretty wank), yet places like Maidenhead get away with it…
Anything else? Yeah. A couple of decent articles in WUP with regards the current financial shit of clubs including some decent research that you really don’t get anywhere else. Sort of stuff that newspapers should be doing, let alone fanzines. That said, I do think the cartoons generally are shit – obscurity kills humour unless you’re in on it. The one on the back cover was a waste of somebody’s valuable time. Also, is it me or are the fans-getting-pushed-around type articles like the FCUM one smug and self-congratulatory? One shouldn’t be too harsh I guess, because I know the very hard way what it’s like to fill space when you’re feeling as creative as a photocopier. Who knows, I may even do a rare article for the next one..
So, was it worth it? Oh go on, fill your boots
In a nutshell: Could it happen?