Hersham away, a depressing micro-climate, is not an inviting venue. Makes Nottingham Forest’s City Ground in 1979 look like a modern-day Wembley turf.
Baile (Clough) and right-hand man Naylor (Peter Taylor) were masterminding another fixture in an impressive league season. Some old faces and some quality new ones too. Smith (Shilton) in goal had forgotten his towel, turned out it was not a problem as he did not work up a sweat. “You see we have this short, fat little winger who will turn you inside out, inside out!” Ridgeway (John Robertson) was on fire. Will beat any man over the first yard and was causing them problems. Omo (John McGovern) was immense, shut down their midfield whilst doing Carl’s, “call me Carlos” (John O’Hare) running. Having said that, what should we do if we get a direct free kick? Let Carlos shoot, and if it is indirect? Get someone to knock it to Carlos and let him shoot! He had a few goes but no joy this week.
Jones (Larry Lloyd) was a rock all game, and led from the back! The defence was unbreakable. Moodley (Frank Clark), Phelps (Viv Anderson), Naylor and Baile and the bone crusher Stephens (Kenny Burns), jockey stay on your fee……. too late, were rock solid. They were so relaxed, your scribe’s POTM Jones even had time to play a one–two with himself. Heading it 30ft in the air before volleying it to safety!
Tiff’s took the lead when a Leary (Martin O’Neill) corner fell to Omo, 5 yards out with his back to goal. Summoning his inner Theirry Henry skill, he casually back heeled the ball into the net. You had to see it to believe it! One nil at half time, having played with a strong wind / gale to our backs.
Second half into the wind was a bit tougher. Barnett (Tony Woodcock) put in the hard yards and covered more of the field than anyone. Tireless running and was always an outlet. Barras, (Archie Gemmill) our tall South African/Frenchman was having a good game and was imposing himself on the game. Is he doing Movember or was that his normal look? No one liked to ask!
Barnett, not interfering, was given offside put Ridgeway was not and as he put the ball in the back of the net it was disallowed. Would this prove costly? Ridgeway again, clean through went round the keeper, then the goal post and finally a couple of trees before realising he had run out of pitch to work with. Were these misses going to coast us. Leary, providing a rare example of a midfielder tracking back, followed his man and made a great tackle.
Hersham rarely threatened, and the praise has to go to the whole team on a great performance, with the final kick of the game Ridgeway completed his near hat-trick and found the back of the net. Kent, who lives in the sticks and has not been told that barbers are now open after lockdown, turned up and ran the line. I think he enjoyed what he saw.
Diz who had been “having a good time” turned up and did not want to stop! Questions have been asked about his fundraising for a moustache, yet he wears a white vest for free! Let’s see what happens with that tash in December shall we! He does keep pushing this Karaoke Curry on the 11th!
There was talk of Owens (Garry Birtles) joining us in the pub for a coke and packet of crisps if he promised not to run around, but unfortunately that never happened.
Top of the league Ascot next week, but after beating Hersham (Malmo), we face them in good spirits, with the promise of a party at Omo’s after!
On a final note, a big thank you to Baile and Naylor for organising and improving the Tiffs Vets over the last 3 years. Good luck moving forward Dave H (Steve Copper).
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Jones (Larry Lloyd)