With very cold weather forecast it was a chilly Greshams who gathered in the draughty changing rooms of the Langley Field ground in Felixstowe. A couple of late call offs had left Greshams short of numbers. Groggy had only called off due to sickness at 8.15 in the morning, probably feeling the after effects of an overload of rectal rocket fuel. Meanwhile, Froudy seemed to have been on some rectal concoction of his own judging by the truly rancid emissions he was producing in the changing rooms. A wheezing and threadbare 11 was therefore all manager Cashen had to call on, with Cashen Junior having managed to emerge from his pit to join the squad. The team was therefore named as Rob in goals; a back four of Dan Mayhew, Danny Bond, Rich Minns and Cash; in midfield Tom, Froudy, Sam and Ollie, with Rob and Nathan up front and Skipper Hamblin running the line.
Despite the makeshift nature of the line up, Greshams started the game very much on the front foot. They were passing the ball around nicely, playing out from the back and generally looking composed with Froudy running the midfield. All that was lacking was a bit more quality in the final third, where they were just unable to carve out any clear cut opportunities. Greshams were made to pay for this when Cashen gave the ball away in midfield. Feathers seized on the error and passed the ball forward Ito the left back channel that Cashen had vacated. The Feathers winger still had a lot to do but unfortunately produced a fine finish across the goal giving Rob no chance.
Despite the setback, Greshams were continuing to play the better football, but still they were not able to force the Feathers keeper into action. They had a succession of half chances, probably the best of which fell to Nathan, just a few yards out and to the right of the goal. However, he was just unable to get the ball properly under control and was eventually crowded out before he could get a decent shot away. However before the end of the half Feathers doubled their lead and once again Greshams were the authors of their own misfortune. Dan Mayhew lost the ball on the Greshams right and it was quickly fed forward to the dangerous Feathers number 9 who was able to get the run on Danny and produce an emphatic finish. The celebration, in which the number 9 re-enacted knocking out Neil Potter’s tooth, was lacking in taste to say the very least.
Half Time Feathers 2 Greshams 0
Despite the scoreline, the mood on the chilly pitchside was positive. Greshams had played well and had the majority of territory and position in what had by and large been an enjoyable half of football. However for all the positive chat, the second half started in disastrous fashion for the blues. Straight from the kick off the Feathers midfielder wandered forward, past about 5 Greshams players who offered no more than powder puff resistance. The ball was played forward, no Greshams player reacted, and the ball was in the net for what must have been one of the quickest goals Greshams have ever conceded from a restart. Certainly no Greshams player touched the ball between the kick off and the ball going in the net.
This was a crucial goal and Greshams heads might have dropped. Instead, they continued to play the better football. Nathan and Tom had switched positions at half time and Nathan was soon involved down the left with his pace causing problems. Meanwhile Tom looked more comfortable up front and was showing some increasingly assured touches. Greshams again were forcing a succession of half chances, on some occasions they seemed to be rather shot shy and were trying to walk the ball into the net. Froudy however did take it upon himself to let fly from outside the box only to see his screamer crash back from the bar (at least, that’s how he described it to your correspondent after six or seven pints).
Unfortunately for Greshams just as they were in the ascendancy they conceded again. This time a through ball found the Greshams rearguard rather square. Rob was able to block the striker’s initial shot but as bad luck would have it the ball rebounded straight to the striker who had an easy task to stick the ball into the unguarded net.
However Greshams continued to press and finally got the goal that was the least they deserved from the match. There was some nice play down the right which ended with Ollie drilling in a low cross. Initially it seemed like it might evade everyone as Rob and Tom tried in vain to get a touch but finally the ball fell to Nathan at the far post and he made no mistake from close range.
There was just time for a minor fracas as the usually placid veteran left back was riled up by an unnecessary barge in the back. Drawing on his best scouse accent, Cashen politely invited his opponent to go forth and procreate, which resulted in a bit of handbags although, on this occasion, everybody’s teeth remained in place.
This was virtually the last act of the match which ended with a very unflattering scoreline for a rather unlucky Greshams.
Final Score Feathers 4 Greshams 1
Man of the Match
This was a surprisingly enjoyable game to play in and for almost the whole 90 minutes Greshams were playing the good passing football which they are well capable of but have produced too rarely of late. There were a few good performances and a special mention to Danny Bond who, playing centre half for the first time in his life, barely put a foot wrong (the odd shanked clearance apart!). However Man of the Match this week goes to Froudy who dictated the entire pace of the game from the middle of the park, seeming always to find time and space and spraying passes around for fun. Well played mate, a well deserved pint of Carling to you.