Year: 2017

1s vs Weirside Rangers – 18.03.17

Merton 0 v Weirside 2

 

I’m afraid this report is a bit lacklustre and lacking in content. Which is in keeping with our performance on Saturday!

 

Having played pretty poorly when we met Weirside in the cup a couple of weeks ago, and scraped through on penalties, this was our opportunity to prove that are much better than that. Unfortunately it wasn’t to be the case.

 

Weirside were a better team than we played in the cup and had three or four new recruits who gave them a cutting edge in midfield and upfront. That said we should still have been a good match but just never got into our stride. It was a windy day and the pitch was bobblely but as the cliché goes “It was the same for both sides”.

 

The only significant action of a scrappy first half was a very dubious penalty award which resulted in us going in 1-0 down. My half time rallying call/bollocking really worked a treat and we were soon 2-0 down to a good finish from inside the box. This woke us up and we started to bite in tackles and push forward but it was all too little too late.

 

Well done to Weirside for showing the spirit required to pull themselves out of the relegation places and we’ll need to pull our socks up ready for our cup semi in a couple of weeks.

 

No MOTM or DOTD as everyone was too despressed.

 

Team: Sherbs, Chaz, Browner, Clappers, Kearnsy (Adam Sandler/Rafa Benitez), Nick Van Winkle, Sam, Will Low, Jonny (Kieran), Charlie, Tom Rowe.   

2s vs West Wickham – 18.03.17

Merton 2nd XI 5 – 2 Weirside Ranger 2nd X/XI

Revenge is a dish best served cold, and it is cold, very cold… well actually it was a bit Spring-like if we’re being totally honest.

Anyway, after a cruel 1-0 loss first time around, Merton won the return fixture in style.

To whet your appetite for what is to come, I can promise Bromance, Banana shots, potentially illegal goals, and a naked Holly Wil…hang on, scratch that last, belongs on a different thread.

With Mustard making a welcome return to the 2s alongside Neal, Glenn, Dan and Dan, there was the delight of a pre-game playlist of energising songs to look forward to. After a bright start, Rock DJ prompted a few groans and Dan (K) then proclaimed listening to it was akin to water-boarding… to the guy that it turned up had picked the song. Awkward.

On the pitch, Merton lined up 442 and were raring to go. Weirside lined up with just 10 men, while their first team boasted a full complement of substitutes a full 5 yards away on the adjacent pitch. Over-confident? Did the two side really hate each other? Could they just not count? All was revealed later.

Merton went at the oppo from the outset, with Glenn in particular looking both classy and threatening down the right wing.

After some early pressure, the DQ/DK axis up top yielded the opener. DK managed to win a header and force a pass on to DQ, who returned the favour and played DK in on goal. So far, so good. As pretty much every player, and most definitely Andy Holder-Ross, waited for DK to ‘just score already’, DK, convinced he was offside, decided to do… nothing.

Minutes passed. Tumbleweed rolled by. The hitherto frozen defence and keeper came to the belated conclusion that they could move, and closed in to make the tackle. At this point, DK decided, offside or not, he’d take action, and as enough time has elapsed for DQ to run into the box, he squared the ball to DQ ten yards out to apply the finishing touch.

To me. To you. In a moment of chuckle-brothersesque synchronisation, DQ took aim… and squared the ball back to DK. To me. To you.

AHR had a small apoplectic episode.

DK thought this was a lovely gesture and decided it was probably time for a shot, given there were now approximately 13 players inside the penalty box and the half time whistle might beat him to it at this rate. He sent a left footed (strike is probably too strong a word but it’ll do), strike towards the bottom corner.

DQ watched DK shoot, thinking what a lovely time they had had. Probably. Or he may have been thinking, not for the first time, that he had chosen the wrong song earlier and it really should have been McAlmont and Butler for the uplifting track. These decisions can really haunt you.

Anyway, the shot lollopped along towards the bottom corner, only for the keeper’s big right mitt to temporarily stop its progress. So DQ decided he had better pop the ball in the net, given he had an open goal for a few yards out.

Andrew Holder Ross was not amused. Pearcey, on the other hand, lovely Pearcey, came and called both frontmen heroes, if just for one day.

If any of those still reading are thinking that was an inordinately long description for one goal, then you now know what it was like to watch.

1-0, and Merton continued to press. Mustard was hungrily snapping up loose balls, Glenn was having a whale of time tormenting his full back, AHR was, well, angry, and poor old Rayner was shouting a lot for the ball and not really seeing much of it. When he finally did get the ball, he delivered an absolute peach of a cross to the far post, only for it to be utterly wasted by falling to DK. For most people it would have been a poor miss. DK headed it over and felt a bit pleased he had made contact.

Better was to come however, as more nice link up play by DK and DQ saw DQ this time played in on goal. DQ saw the supporting DK outside him and squared the ball like a scholar and a gentleman for DK to crash home. Lovely forward play, and Pearcey came up, called them heroes again and muttered something about a bromance. AHR just muttered something.

The footballingly simpatico and handsome front duo were beginning to resembe the great goalscoring partnerships of bygone eras: Dalglish/Rush. Bergkamp/Henry. Chas/Dave. Jedward. Alas, in keeping with time-honoured tradition, Lofty hooked DK after scoring and after just 30 minutes of magic, and the DQ/DK axis was done for the match. Manny came on in his place and Darcy also replaced AHR. Which gave him plenty of time to tell DK exactly what he thought of the first goal.

At this point, Weirside had noticed their first team had players to spare and were formulating a cunning plan to swipe one of them, so a third goal before this happened would have been handy indeed. And so it proved, Manny robbing the ball out of nowhere and playing in DQ. No square ball this time – instead he opened up his body and passed the ball ever so crisply into the bottom corner. Think early Michael Owen. Except Ravenelli grey. And around 17 years older.

3-0 at HT.

Weirside did indeed start the second half with 11, but it was Merton who extended their lead early in the second half. Manny had already missed a good chance when he once again robbed an oppo player and bore down on goal. A good tackle or maybe an interception later, he had recovered the ball and had it on the touchline just inside the box. Eschewing a cross with his left foot, he instead turned 270 degrees and chipped the ball up with his right with a sort of Phil Mickleson bunker flop shot. The ball bananaed away and then back towards goal, and perhaps with half an eye on the onrushing DQ, the keeper could only help the ball into the top corner. 4-0.

Manny had time to play in DQ one more time, only for him to blaze over before being replaced by DK for the final half hour.

Weirside then got one back with something of a sympathy penalty after a swift counter. Cookie looked to have got back to make a good tackle but the referee was having none of it.

The game had got a bit scrappy at this point, but a fine ball from Dan (full back, also excellent throughout) saw DK get in behind the defence down the right wing, and from this move Merton restored their four goal advantage.

Looking up to see only Manny in the box, DK nevertheless decided to cross low and hard into the box. The keeper went to snap this up only for the bouncing ball to tw*t him in the face as he went to pick it up. Manny daintily wandered past the disorientated keeper and knocked the ball in from 2 yards. 5-1.

Or so we all thought. Clappers on the adjacent pitch later swore the ball went wide, through the side netting and then into the net. Manny was unavailable for comment. Dubious goal??

At this point, Cookie had had enough of pretending to be a centre-back and got himself involved in some midfield action. A late tackle (on him), a bit of wrestling and a lot of swearing later he and a Weirside player were being told off by the ref. Said referee was distinctly heard saying no cards were necessary, only for Cookie to get bored and wander off the pitch, leaving a proffered hand and then a yellow card in his wake. Lofty came on in his place to guide the team through the last quarter.

There was still time for a bit more incident. First, Manny almost had a hatrick late in the game after nice work from Darcy and a flick on from DK, but a fine one handed stop denied him.

Then, with just a few minutes to go, the otherwise excellent Mustard wound up (and massively telegraphed) a throw in in-field only to spanner it up royally and concede the foul throw. That’s DotD sown up, literally everybody said to themselves.

Everybody, that is, except Neal, who from the resulting throw-in waited until ball was in the box and beautifully shielded before taking a 5 yard run up and shoulder-charging the Weirside player in the back. For the second time the referee pointed to the spot. Blatant doesn’t even begin to cover it. Dan got a hand to the pen, but it still snuck in. 5-2.

A thumping victory, made all the sweeter when back in the changing room Pearcey asked Mustard when his song was going to be on… as it was playing. This was pointed out with some amusement to the somewhat shamefaced Pearcey.

Pearcey, Mustard and DQ shared MotM spoils, and despite Neal’s best efforts, Mustard also doubled up with DOTD for that throw in. A pint of wine (plus sambuca) was polished off with not only aplomb but also approximately seven bags of steak crisps.

7s vs Old Wilsonians 9s DH- 18.03.17

Merton 7s V Old Wilsonian 9s Match 1

Once again we get to walk the turf of WCE, you can tell it’s coming to the end of the season when you have to walk through a forest of rugby 7s pitches to get to the only pitches available at the wrong end of the common! None the less, the 7s as usual are in great pre-game spirits, looking forward to a double header v OW9s who have yet to win a game or put a point on the board all season.

None the less, not wanting to be the first team to slip up against the bottom side, we start with Dan’s 4-4-2. With Kieran back in goal, and a good looking back 4 (not in the visual sense) Josh at RB, Ed dropping in to LB and Dan and TJ making up the centre backs, confidence was in abundance.

With game 1 underway, the midfield of Malcom & David Flanked by Ricardo and Noor, started early, winning position and passing the ball around, not too long in to the game, the power house of Dennis had his first shot ‘off’ target, quickly followed by his 2nd, also off target. Frankie in the supporting role behind Dennis, was dropping of the shoulder and causing panic in OWs defence and soon enough had a shot of his own straight at the keeper.

This was the general pattern of play for the first half, OWs attacked, play broken up by the defence and midfield, into their last third, miss chances. Was this going to be another bad day at the office, the clear cut chances created was going begging and there was a need of luck… Up steps Dennis, after having every kind of shot saved, parried, blasted off target, it took a great cross from the right for Dennis to do his best ‘scuff’ of a shoot, which seemed to be direct at the goalie, who somehow wrong footed himself and stepped out the way to let the ball innocently bounce in to the corner…. RELIEF!!

Second half, no changes as it was agreed to kill the game before we unsettle the troops, it was not long before the 7s was back in the swing, with Ricardo and Noor both playing huge parts in all of the attacks, Dennis soon grabbed his 2nd followed by a good header for his 3rd and hat trick for the day.

Martin on for Malcom and JT for Frankie, Denzel having a run out in midfield and up top, the game finished 3-0 and finally the 7s not only won a game, but kept a clean sheet.

 

MOTM: Hatrick hero, Dennis and Ricardo who had an outstanding game

DOTD: For once, not football related, but been told Dan deserves it NONE football activates!


Match Report

Merton 7s V Old Wilsonian 9s Match 2

Learning form the previous week, and after much debate, the 2nd game got under way with 2 changes from the first starting eleven, this being JT for Dennis, Kieran who swapped the gloves for an outfield shirt, but made way for Denzel, the game started at the same pace as the previous. With both teams attacking but showing a lot of tiredness, it was now end to end stuff, the breakthrough came half way through the first half, The midfield winning the ball and slotting in Noor who ran at the OWs rear line, made himself some room for a shoot, only to slot John T in on the left which took out the OWs defence, and with John T Breaking his duck and finally getting off the mark with a cool, slotted finish past the static keeper, you could tell he hadn’t though his celebration through in any event of scoring a goal, but manged to fist pump his way back for the restart

With the game at 1-0, second half started in the normal fashion for the 7s, for once managing to keep it clean for at least 10 minutes before letting the OWs left winger cruise down the wing and put a decent cross in, which was controlled and smashed past the keeper by the big centre forwarded. 1-1-1… Here we go again!

This however, rallied the team more, and soon after, with David holding up play on the 18 yard line, Ed on the overlap was put in with a neat back heel pass which Ed drilled the cross passed the OWs right back, the goalkeeper, directly in the path of John T who just needed to stick a toe out, somehow manged to step over the ball and elude himself the chance of a glorious second

Luckily the 7s didn’t wait long, with Denzel wining the ball on the right, got into the area and slotted a neat shot past the advancing keeper, this put paid to a valiant come back by the OWs and allowed for a 3rd to finish off the game. Frankie storming down the right and chipping the keeper form 18 yards to seal the win. Finally, back to back wins!!  

 

 

MOTM: Noor once again done himself justice, but Tom J nicks it with the extra vote

DOTD: John T air shot won it over Eds poor corner

 

Team: Kieran, Josh, Tom J, Dan, Ed, Ricardo, Malcolm, David ©, Noor, Dennis, Frankie

Martin, Denzel, John T

5s vs Polytechnic 8 – 18.03.17

 MERTON FC FANTASTIC FIVES Vs POLYTECHNIC POOHPANTS EIGHTS

                                                         2               –              2

D,   GIBBO                                                                       LUCKY BAR STEWARD

                                                                                          TOE PUNT PETE

It was big game day down at the Hood many of the players needed Sat-Navs and maps to actually find our home ground mistakenly thinking only water polo was played at the Hood.

Some people adhered to the two hour prior to kick off meet time and by the time the sensible ones arrived the others looked at little jaded form the warm up which may be why one half of the team did a warm up and the other half chatted about important topics like Sam’s virginity and Arsenal losing 3-1 to WBA oh happy days! Come on you SPURS!

With the same formation as last week and a starting line-up of Shagger Sam in goal, Lightning Delman and Chris “the slice” Outred as wing backs, Dodgy Dazza, Senior Steve and Lenners as a back three, (h)ansom Aaron, Trembling Tiago and Bambi centre mids and the attacking force of D every fat birds nightmare and Gibbo every sheeps nightmare.  The bench was Calamity Clive, Ian or Iain and Anam the Cadbury king we kicked off with second place a real possibility and the arguments about sectional strength and Poly nines still ongoing.

Poly 8’s were a similar line up and quite frankly should be the lower tem as Poly nines are much better!

We started brightly and with Lee screaming like a banshee marshalling the defence the early game plan was working well.

D and Gibbo looked aggressive and determined up front and the midfield solid my only wish would be that we talk more on the pitch for a team that can manage 250 Whatsapp messages in an hour about Sams sex life a topic that should take 2 minutes or Lenners plans to abduct and kill a carpark attendant again a two minute job despite the fact I have confiscated his weaponry! We are still too quiet.

It looked like the game, as the previous encounters have been, would be tighter than Clive in front of the bar (I know Sam owes a jug but picked on him too much already) .

The ref was as he told me later retiring from refereeing after this game to be fair I think he retired at the start of the game because he was about as close to play as Scotland are to independence.

Disaster struck when with a speculative long shot a lot of wind assisted luck the ball flew into the net from 25 yards shock horror we were 1-0 down.

Last year (I did not play) the fives would have crumbled like a card pyramid in the face of a strong fart but we have a new found resilience and a battling will to win and we should have been back in when a lovely passing move and a through ball to D who would have been through in goal but no offside WTF never!

Then a controversial moment in the game as the Poly forward ran the ball over the by-line and crossed the forward scored and turned away celebrating appeals from Merton seemed to fall on deaf ears Tiago shouting at the player “tell him the ball was out” did not work but the sight of a frothing seething mad eyed Lenners in his  face seemed to make the ref see sense and a goal kick was given a let off and maybe justice for the offside. Aaron was replaced by Ian Iain and Clive came on for Bambi half time came.

After a right good seeing to at half time by Clive (first time he’s managed a right good seeing to think he been on the receiving end as I mentioned WBA won).

We started the second half and were back in the game when a great move saw D’s shot going in the bottom corner Gibbo made sure and buried it from a yard apparently screaming “you’ll never be club top goalscorer”

D could have had another shortly after when from a corner his shot was goal bound and in a moment of madness Dazza forgot he had gone up for a corner and with the best defensive move of the day headed the ball clear! Memories of Clive’s headed miss from 2 inches!

We should have had a penalty, we could have given away a penalty, it was tight very very tight that’s nice if your with a lady but it ain’t no good in a football game!

Then Poly’s left back ran the length of the pitch and mesmerised everyone to the extent that when he pulled the ball back everyone admired it except the striker who buried the ball passed Sam 2-1.

We should have replied almost immediately with a goal mouth scramble but for some reason Gibbo, Delman D all seemed to do a mannequin challenge and did not move when all the ball needed was a little nudge.

We drew level when D buried a header from a corner fantastic goal 2-2.

With the game now in the dying minutes we pushed hard unfortunately the next chance fell to steve normally one to strike without thinking (and miss) he weighed up his options took a touch and pulled the trigger oh dear the ball did well to reach the keeper nice gentle back pass.

The game ended 2-2 honours even and probably a fair result. To pour petrol on the fire of the debate I still wonder how Poly 9’s can destroy teams including us and their 8’s be so much poorer?

Still we need 6 points two cup games left and hopefully runners up will be ours.

On an emotional note it was great to see the team fight back stay focused and not give up!

Man of the match was Tiago (I voted for him) and Ian Iain joint winner he had a great game.

Dick of the day. The parking attendant who stopped Lee getting his car.  That guy’s going to be in the boot of that car soon.

Oh and Tiago got naked Lee and Steve double teamed and by the little rise in his pants either shit himself or quite enjoyed it!

I apologise if you did not get a mention but I can’t insult everyone all the time!

5s line up vs Polytechic 18.03.17

Youth Results – 19.03.17

Today’s results from the Youth section:

U9s lost 3-2 in a hard-fought encounter with G4G Whites
U11s lost 5-1 to Molesey Juniors
U13s had an excellent win, beating Sheen Lions 4-0
No game for the U14s today
Credit to the U15s, who built on last week’s win with a very respectable 0-0 draw with Hanworth Sports

Congrats on another solid set of results to our youngsters!

Adult Result – 18.03.17

Onto the results from today then.

In a Weirside double, the 2s flew the flag (we actually have a flag, lending credence to said metaphor) by trouncing the oppo 5-2. DQ with a brace to continue his barnstorming season, while Dan Kelly and Manny (2) also got amongst it.
The 1s went down 2-0 alas. The 5s fought hard for a 2-2 draw, with goals from Dulanie and Rich Gibbs.
The 6s went down 1-0 to Old Salesians, a blinding, late finish from someone doing the business.
Big congrats to the 7s, who pulled off an excellent 6 points in a double header against Wilsonians. 3-0 in the first game and then 3-1 in the second. Well done lads!

6s vs Old Salesians 3 – 18.03.17

After a solid 5-1 win against Old Salesians the week before, the 6s had no reason to think the rematch would derail their bid for promotion at all. Kev, in a slightly negative headspace given Arsenal’s appalling result in the buildup, muttered something about expecting to lose our game as well. It was generally laughed off. Who knew that his words would be so prophetic.

The main excitement in the minutes leading up to kickoff was whether Fitzy, parachuted in as cover for Swanny, would make it on time. Swanny had actually come along to watch, but, at 2:25, was told to get changed. But as he reached for Matt’s extra small shirt and well-travelled gloves, Fitzy appeared on the horizon, bounding in on his bike like the Messiah. Back to the stands for Swanny, then.

Onto the game, and Merton faced the kickoff, and were playing against a stiff breeze first half. It felt as though it would be a tall order to keep the oppo out against such elements, but Merton were actually the better team. George and Callum were the architects of most things good, and the chances began to come thick and fast.

However, despite a number of goalmouth scrambles, Merton just couldn’t find a way through, and were guilty of profligacy in front of goal. Credit must also go to their keeper though, who pulled off some superb saves, one of them an absolute blinder from point blank from the boot of Callum.

At the other end, there were a few shanked clearances, misjudged headers and hairy moments, but generally the Yellows had the oppo under control. Fitzy was coming off his line with aplomb, and spreading confidence through the back four. Matt was also a rock at right back, and provided a good link down the channels on that side of the pitch too.

The half time whistle eventually went. In truth, Merton should have been at least one or two goals up, given the chances they had. And even though Salesians had looked threatening at times, it was hard to recall them having any clear-cut chances. Anyway, with the wind now at their backs, Merton had every reason to feel expectant that the goal would now come.

But when the game kicked off, it was actually Salesians who seized the initiative. Merton were struggling to string together two passes, some awful long shots ensued when they did, and the nadir of it all came as an argument raged about the formation after a substitution. 4-4-2!!!! 4-3-3!!!! What the hell were we playing? It was quite incredible – the bitching continued for a good three or four minutes, all while play continued.

But things eventually settled down, and once it did, Merton showed their dominance once again. They were beginning to carve out genuine chances, the most straightforward of which fell to Pete, who was unfortunate to see his free header go just wide.

A moment of controversy followed soon after, as Ty lined up a free kick in a good position. His strike was pure, and the keeper appeared wrong footed. But one of the men in the wall stuck out a blatant arm to block what would have been a sure-fire goal, and the ref, who was watching the line rather than the game, somehow kept his whistle in his pocket when a stonewall penalty was merited.

Nevertheless, Merton shrugged it off. They were in control of this game, weren’t they? Salesians still hadn’t even managed to create a genuine chance.

Cue the calamity.

Perhaps a little over ambitious in attack, Merton got caught on the counter, and faced a 3 on 2 overlap at the back. Beans did pretty well to shepherd their striker to the byline, but he managed to get a menacing cross in nonetheless. But, even with a man behind him ready to pounce, there can be no excuse for the “clearance” Mike put it in. A semi shank was enough to send the onion bag bulging, and with just 5 or so minutes remaining, an unforced error now meant Merton were 1-0 down. It was hard to comprehend.

They pored forward in their droves in the final few minutes, adopting what appeared to be a 2-5-3 formation. And in the dying seconds, George found himself one on one with the keeper (albeit with a defender closing him down from the side). But alas, the keeper once again thwarted him brilliantly, and, much to the immense frustration of the Yellows, the final whistle followed soon after.

Disappointing to drop points in such a fashion in the race for promotion. Especially against a team which had barely managed a shot on target. Missed chances were costly, not to mention a stonewall penalty not given, but ultimately it was the own goal which decided it. A double header next week to get things back on track. Here’s to six points on Saturday lads. Beers on me at the Hood next time!

Team: Darren Fitzgerald (GK), Kevin Locke (c), Adam Prior, Mike Todt, Matt Haswell, Ty Fuller, Lee, Callum Fisher, George Brobbey, Trey Mambeko, Pete Obeng-Adu
Subs: Dan Plaistow, Paul Onomor, George Hall
MOTM: George Brobbey
DOTD: A slam dunk – Mike wins it at a canter

Under 15s vs Hanworth – 19.03.17

Merton kept their mid table hopes alive after they punctured Hanworth’s promotion ambitions with a very fair draw.

The yellows came devastatingly close to a win when Marcin’s penalty was saved and Sam’s shot was blocked, however Hanworth looked more dangerous and threatened Merton’s goal many times. Brad, the reds striker, caused the Merton defence problems but none too big that couldn’t be dealt with. George and tommy both pulled off some great saves and the back line for Merton was very organised, just like Hanworth’s.

The first half was quiet and George only had to make one save. Hanworth looked more likely to score but Merton held out till half time and made a goalkeeper change. Jake came to centre-back and tommy moved in goal. Number 4 for Hanworth ruled the centre of the pitch and, although Merton’s midfield had to work hard they were definitely the better team.

The result at Hanworth finished 4-1 to 3rd placed team and without a doubt they travelled to Joseph Hood expecting a win. Darren and, step in manager, Glen helped Merton very much to the result and it was definitely one of the best games they have played all season.

Hanworth played well and kept the back line strong but just couldn’t find the back of the net. Their closest chance was when Brad was let through but was denied by a brilliant save from tommy.

After the draw Hanworth lie comfortably 3rd, only one point behind Bedfont but have played 3 more games. Promotion looks unlikely as the reds only have one game left and it’s against Kingstonians. Overall it has been a positive season for Hanworth, only losing 3 out of 19 games.

On the other hand, Merton have had a mixed season losing 50% of games and only winning 31%. However it’s understandable as the team has been together for only one year. Merton face Met police, Brockham, Hampton and Whitton for their last remaining games. With a win out of all four they could potentially move up to 5th, depending on Kingstonians results.

Man of the match was between Jamie Esteban, who was the main part Merton kept a clean sheet, and George Brown, who played for the first time in right attacking mid and gave the yellows a massive boost up front.

Player Profile – Jon Taylor

NAME: Jonathan Taylor
TEAM: Merton VIIs
POSITION: Inside Right/Right-Arm Slow
BIRTH DATE: 01/05/84
BIRTH PLACE: Berkshire
PREVIOUS CLUBS: Lost in the mists of time

1. Tell us who you are outside of the club. What do you do, how would you describe yourself?

A structural engineer by day which isn’t as fun as it sounds.  Work bang in the centre of that there London and live out east, which looks like Mad Max but is cheap. Enjoy a bit of cricket and snooker outside work, and when not doing that or boozing can usually be found underneath my car.
2. What was most memorable moment in your MFC career till now?
Forgetting my shinpads and as a warm up having to jog a mile to the nearest sport shop and back to buy some. Suffice to say it’s not been the most productive season.
3. What is your favourite quote?
“The ball is round. The game lasts ninety minutes. This much is fact. Everything else is theory” – Sepp Herberger
4. Tell us something about yourself that most of us at the club probably aren’t aware of…
I’m from the West Country and so therefore support Yeovil Town. I like to think it gives me a sense of perspective. I also do own a car that occasionally does actually work, contrary to popular belief.
5. Ask a friend for a reference and post their response of you – can be a family
“Generous – will always give you more points through fouls than he pots”
6. Lastly, share with us your goals/expectations for the season…
To reach some semblance of fitness and help the VIIs to a respectable first league finish.

RAPID FIRE:
Player of the season (at Merton): Difficult as it’s been a solid team effort but Captain Dave has been a consistent presence in the centre, as well as tapping in from 48 yrds.
Favourite team in the UK: Yeovil Town FC
Favourite team outside the UK: Udinese
Childhood hero: Warren Patmore
Favourite word:
Favourite band: Radiohead/UNKLE
Favourite food: Sunday Roast
Dream job: Pilot/Anything that pays an absolute stack of cash, really I’m not fussy.

1s vs HSBC – 11.03.17

HSBC away, 11.03.2017

1-1

A game likely enjoyed by the braying twits in club ties cheering on the home side for the occasional malice exhibited by the hosts was a satisfactory occasion for the visitors in yellow, too, thanks to a hard-earned point. 

Proceedings quickly settled into a pattern of HSBC possession and Merton chances on the break. The Will Low/Wilgo combo typically broke play up. Ivan, as the third man in the middle, had his tail up and passing radar on high alert. His early pass gave Jonny a chance with which he shaved the post. 

It was simple, direct, decisive stuff. Shame Rat wanted no further part in it after 10 minutes, shuffling off for lunch while complaining about a twisted ankle. 

The Charlie Hockless penalty that gave Merton the lead might seem simple enough, too. In reality, his spot-kick was the decisive blow in an episode of physical and psychological warfare. First, after good work down the right from Jonny Graham, Charlie scrapped with defender and goalkeeper – and was eventually hauled down – to win his chance from 12 yards. He then had to retrieve the ball from somewhere in New Beckenham while fielding less-than-sporting posers from the less-than-sporting posers in red. “Don’t overthink it,” was among the advice doled out. Our boy didn’t. 1-0. 

If it was a game of tireless running from the front three, then that was reflected by the industry from the back four. Conor and Joe Grew on either flank impressed, the latter deservedly winning MotM. 

Browner and Clappers needed to be a muscular presence. They delivered. Silly Browner had such a good time he even forgot to EG his post-match tequila. 

Siri makes a habit of making saves he has no right to. This one was up there with his finest this season. A low ball drilled along the edge of the six-yard box from the left was intercepted by Willy Low’s outstretched foot, but Merton’s midfield engine could only direct it towards his own goal. One of HSBC’s shrieking forwards was already celebrating as Siri threw himself down low to his right, his impossibly-extended paw scraping the ball out for a corner. 

HSBC equalised from a low corner midway through the second half. That aside, the Merton wall stood firm. The midfield even won the majority of their headers, despite Clappers’ early (“reverse psychology”) predictions.

Tom Rowe ran himself into the ground for little reward. Milo looked bright on his introduction from the bench. The game remained an energetic encounter that became stretched. 

Charlie didn’t quite his feet right when presented with a good chance to grab a second after a Wilgo flick-on. Then Vanny could have won it, galloping through beyond the last man, only to misjudge his attempted lob. 

That was enough to bag him DotD, despite his otherwise stellar performance and Tom Rowe asking whether one needed an HSBC current account to play for the team. Marvellous scenes, truly. 

Siri (GK), Conor Murphy, Clappers (c), Peter Brown, Rat (Joe Grew), Will Low, Wilgo, Ivan, Tom Rowe (James Laughton), Jonny Graham (Milo), Charlie

Written by Wilgo