Match Report vs Olympique 23/9/17

This game was our opportunity to say goodbye to a man who has consumed so much factor 50 sunscreen that he has singlehandedly driven up the price by 400% during his two years in Vietnam. A man who had drunk so much beer that his belly was bigger than all of his compatriots (even Edwin). Most of all this was a man who was a rock solid defender (most of the time) and a bloody good guy.

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A day like this should be all about remembering the good times… no need to focus on any mix-ups or errors which may or may not have lead to the opposition scoring, events such as that are minor details during victories on momentous occasions such as this. Anyway on with the game…

With Mirko having one to many limoncellos the night before, Pat was forced to sacrifice himself once again for the boys. All of that very, very late night fitness work he’d been doing all for nothing. With Pat between the pipes and a strong lineup on a high from the victory at the seven-a-side tournament, we were confident we would conquer the French, something we hadn’t managed last season. Captain Olly handed the ginger gentleman the armband for his final game, a fitting gesture.

Raiders were on top throughout the first half and attacked the French goal almost relentlessly. Despite having more chances than grey hairs on Craig’s head we couldn’t find a breakthrough and were almost caught out when Olympique hit the post. Half-time came and it was 0-0, but we were looking good.

Jerry’s replacement as vice-captain Soggy gave a rousing half-time team talk and we went back out ready to break the deadlock. It didn’t take long and that man Hoggba charged down the right wing and whipped in a beauty of a cross which Rick met and powered home. A well deserved lead which unfortunately wouldn’t last too long…

A few moments later Pat played out a strong back pass to Olly who had a huge gap in front of him to power into, he accelerated towards the ball and had the opposition striker beaten. It was at the point I decided to light up a cigar and have a well-earned rest, I’d decided to let the big man charge up field whilst I chill out and cover.

But wait… what-the-f*** he’s stepped over the bloody ball, oh sh!t, best put that cigar out. As I tried to recover from shock I realised I had two Frenchmen on my case and needed to get rid of the ball ASAP, no worries I thought, Ollie will drop back and give me an option, we’ve been practicing that banana formation for a while right? Before I could do anything about it, the hours of training had taken over and I’d passed it back towards the centre of defence, however, there was no fruity saviour in sight, only a Frenchman who latched on to my banana split of a through ball and drilled it past Pat from an acute angle.

With not long left the pressure was on for the Raiders to open the season with 3 points, we’d need our forwards to start being less Emile Heskey, more Harry Kane. There are rumours that after witnessing some of the finishing on display, Colin will be abandoning all fitness training and will instead be devoting all training time to much needed finishing practice. Eventually we managed to snatch a winner with Clem powering in a header, relief at last, for some more than others. We continued to attack the French as the game wore on and we could have scored a couple more, although, they did have a couple of chances of their own and in the end 2-1 was a fair result.

At some point in the game, when the referee had a break from the French screams he managed to find the time to book one of our players due to the offence of wearing leggings in recent matches. Well done to that man for not wearing them this week, long may it continue.

At the end of the game Jerry’s final game, tears were streaming down his face which by now was red as his beard and his shirt. Thanks for everything Uncle Jerry, we’ll miss ya. On to next week and another step closer to that quadruple!

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