Godmanchester 0 – Saffron Walden 0
3rd October 2015
I pre warn you, the below blog and pictures, has been give the rating of 12. Not for the squeamish!
I have just finished cutting the grass, cleaning the BBQ for the winter, hanging out the washing and gone to the bottle bank. I am safe to say, that my chores are done for today. Now, on to more interesting things: like writing my blog, about the best non-league side in the world.
Today we travelled to Godmanchester. It was a nice, traffic free drive up the A14. Godmanchester is near Huntington, so it’s quite a local match for the Bloods? Well….sort of!
Godmanchester are the highest goal scoring team in the league so far. James Hall has banged in 15 goals in 10 appearances. That’s and average 1.5 goals per game. Could the Bloods tame the Goddy hit man? Goddy were on a very good run, with 6 wins in a row.
We got to the ground just after 2pm. Goddy were having a half price day, so entry was only £3. It was great to be greeted by lots of away fans. I have had some car stickers, of the Bloods badge made up, and I was selling them at £2 each. I had them in my man bag along with my camera. I sold about 20 stickers, which was a result. Nigel has now named me ‘Delboy’! Thank you Nigel, but I have been called worse.
With the Beast and Fleming missing, Sticksy put last week’s MOTM Solks, in at centre back to partner Reid. Solkhon is now known as Rocky. You will find out why soon.
The starting 11 were:
Floyd Croll was in goal. Defence: Grindrod, Ried, Solkhon (Rocky) and P Abbott. Midfield: Snelling (Mashy), Harper, Noble (Nobby). Forwards: Calver (Wig), Thomas and Bell. Subs: Drane, Murphy (Boss), Wardley (Sticksy) and Soutar
The Bloods won the toss and started the match. We knew we would have to go at them hard, and try and get an early goal. Thomas was the first player to look threatening. He made a lovely run up the wing, holding off his marker. He couldn’t get a cross in, but he won the Bloods a throw on.
Godmanchester retaliated quickly, and looked very good on the ball. They had very good discipline and passed the ball well. Diaper had a great run at goal, but Rocky put in a tidy block, which gave Goddy a corner. The throw on was well defended by the Viking, and Bell cleared the danger.
Ian Chapman quote: ‘Godmanchester are very physical’. I have to agree with them. They were tough lads.
Their hit man James Hall had a great effort, but it was well saved by Croll. Hall found some space, and pulled the trigger. This was an early warning for the Bloods. They followed this up by another shot on target, but Croll pushed the ball away for the Viking to scoop it out, for a corner. The corner sailed in, and Goddy had another shot on target, but Rocky put in a lovely block.
Goddy would not give the Bloods any rest. McDonald had a great run up the wing, but Bell showed his pace, and put in a great sliding tackle. The ball went out for a Goddy throw.
Wiggy got into the game, and showed his great skills, by beating two of the defenders. Wig was then tripped just outside the area, and won us a free kick. Harper sent in a dangerous cross, which found Rocky, who headed the ball into the 6 yard box, but no one was there to slot the ball into the back of the net.
Bloods turned on the heat, with another great run by Wig, to win us a corner. Bell delivered a great ball for Solkhon, but he was not close enough. The danger had not seized, as Bell found the ball back at his feet. He passed the ball to Nobby. Nobby shot, but he was just wide. It did look like it took a defection for a corner, but the referee decided it was a goal kick.
Diaper broke well and linked up with his right back Parr. The Viking ran Parr straight into Harper, who made it difficult for Parr to shoot. He decided to cross the ball, but their striker was off side.
At this point I passed the Dictaphone to Owen Bailey, who gave a great bit of commentary. I think you have a future Sky Sports pundit Nigel. His reported that Thomas made a nice run, and passed it to Mashy. Mashy went for a shot but it was slightly wide.
Godmanchester continued to look great on the ball. They looked like a team that were top of the league. It had been our toughest opponents this season, so far.
Hall tried very hard to open up our defence, but the Viking put in a challenge. The referee gave a foul, but I was too far away to see if it was one. The cross was very good, and well headed by Goddy. Croll pushed the ball onto his cross bar, which bounced back into play.
20 minutes into the match, and Yoemans had a great run up the wing, but Abbott tackled him, which resulted in another free kick for Goddy. Goddy went for a shot but it was a comfortable save for Croll.
Diaper and Parr linked up well, however Wiggy was having none of it. He put in a great challenge, to win the ball and ran up the wing. Has tripped and won us another free kick. The free kick was taken by Harper, but it didn’t produce a shot on goal.
Goddy started to look dangerous, and Rocky put in a great challenge in the 18 yard box. The team shouted for a penalty, but it was not given.
They were now putting serious pressure on Walden, but we defended well. We worked very hard closing Goddy down. Every Bloods player was tracking back to stop them from scoring.
28 minutes into the match and Goddy had won another corner. They piled into the box but Walden again defended well. Some great play from the back 4.
30 minutes into the match and it was our turn to put the pressure on. Wiggy crossed the ball into the box, and Thomas flicked the ball to Bell with his head. Bell brushed the ball to one side, and tried to lob Conroy, but he made a brilliant save, tipping the ball over the cross bar. We now had a corner for Bell to take. Rocky jumped well, but it was headed out for yet another corner. Harper took the corner, and the keeper punched the ball out. The ball fell to Rocky, who smashed the ball on the inside of the cross bar. He then followed it up by another great effort, but the Goddy defender cleared it off the line. Now had Mrs Nash been at the game, the flannel would well and truly be out.
We were now starting to frustrate Goddy. I presume they were not used to this level of attack, after some great back to back wins.
Now we were on the front foot. Abbot got into the match and challenged Watson. Watson went down, and it looked like he grabbed onto Abbott’s leg. They exchanged words but the referee didn’t book them.
In the last few minutes of the half, Goddy had another few chances on goal from Hall and Yoemans, but they were not good enough to beat Croll.
HT and it was 0-0. This was definitely not in the script for Goddy. They had been playing most teams, off the park. I needed a pint!
I went to the bar, and had a chat to a few of the Goddy fans. They were very impressed by the way the Bloods were playing, and said we didn’t look like a team that had just been promoted.
Within a minute from kick off, Harper came close to scoring a worldy. Wig ran with the ball, up the wing and passed it back to Abbott. Abbott set Harper, who smashed the ball, but it went over the bar.
Two minutes into the second half, and Mashy and Rocky went down in our own 18 yard box. They had both gone for the same ball, and clashed heads. It was very worrying as they didn’t get up. It was going to take more than the magic sponge. The game was stopped, while they were treated. The fans became instantly concerned when a Doctor was requested, over the PA. The ambulance was called for both players, and the game was stopped for 15 minutes. Wig came over and said that both players had split their heads open, and would need stiches. They got to their feet, and all the fans were applauding them as they went off. So much respect from the home fans. We were not sure if the referee was going to call the game off. He decided to play on, so Mashy was replaced by the Boss and Rocky was replaced by Sticksy.
We started again and I have no idea what time it was. Sorry I won’t be able to give you exact timing for the second half.
The lads tried to let the injuries to Rocky and Mashy put them off, but it was going to be a hard. You couldn’t have had better players to replace Rocky and Mashy.
Harper won the ball back in the Goddy half, and passed to the Boss. The Boss then timed his pass perfectly for Bell, who came charging up the wing. Bell was almost tackled but passed to the Viking. Goddy defended well and got the ball back, and won a throw on.
Sticksy was working very hard, sticking to Sparks, to snuff out his shot. Sparks passed to Hall, who ran into the box, but his shot hit the side netting.
Parr had a great chance, and struck the ball well, but Nobby made a great block to deny Parr.
Goddy did find the back of the net, but the keeper called for a foul on Croll. Phew!! The cross came in, and was headed into the net, but Croll was knocked over,
Abbott was looking solid at right back, and headed the ball clear. He has had a very close haircut and looks particularly tough…..Well ard!’
The Viking made a great challenge, and won the ball back. He sent Bell on a run up the wing. Bell played a great long ball to Wig, who took the ball into the 18 yard box. Sparks tracked back and got across Wig, and won the ball back.
The Boss produced some great skill with the ball on the wing, and passed it to the Viking. The Viking beat his man, but his cross was straight at Conroy.
Goddy were determined to score, but Bell put in a great header to stop Goddy from producing a cross. The ball went out for a corner. The corner was met by a Goddy player, but it went wide.
Pressure continued and Nobby cleared the ball well, the ball came back in and Croll punched the ball away. The ball fell to Bell, who cleared it from danger.
It was starting to get tense. Sticksy got hold of the ball in the Goddy penalty error, and it looked like he was pushed over, but no penalty was awarded.
The Bloods were determined not to concede, and defended another great chance from a corner. The ball came out and we fouled a Goddy played. The referee awarded a free kick for Hyem to take, but it was straight at Croll, who caught the ball
Another cross came in from Goddy, but Abbott got his head to it. The ball fell to the Boss who cleared the ball.
Thomas had a great run, and passed it to Wig. Wig passed to the ball to set Harper for a shot, but the defender got a block in.
Soon after Harpers effort; Thomas went for a cheeky lob over the keeper. He shook of the defender and went for it, but the keeper was too close to his line.
Substitute Seaber-Shinn, had a great little run, and slipped the Bloods player. He went for a shot, but Nobby got a block in.
Max Drane was introduced to the match, replacing Harper. Harper had a great game, and soon he will score one of his worldy’s.
More pressure from Goddy, the lads had worked so hard. Surely we could come away with a point.
I just have to mention there was a hot air balloon, which landed in the field next to the ground. We thought it was Mrs. Nash and Malcolm coming to cheer the lads on.
The whistle went and we cheered. We had got ourselves a well-earned point. Not many teams will go to Goddy and come away with a point. Well done to all of the lads.
I would also like give credit to, and thank the Goddy staff for taking good care of Rocky and Mashy. I now know both lads are all stitched up, and back on their feet.
MOTM could be a number of people. If it was just based on the first half, I would have given it to Rocky. Sorry hero, but it’s not! I am going to give it to Spike Bell. Spike played very well throughout the match. He was excellent coming forward, and was always sprinting back to help the defenders. He put in a star performance. Well done Spike!
The Bloods next first team match is at home against Swaffham Town on the 10th October. But if you can’t wait that long, the reserve team are playing at home on Tuesday night, in the cup.
Thanks for reading