Sat 29 March 1997 (League)


Report by Phil Newton:

Hmmmmm, We've sold our only attacking left sided player, so who was gonna play?, in the car on the way down i realised, of course! our forward thinking managers have sold the dead wood to make way for our exciting crop of youngsters, Byron Glasgow will start and everything will be OK! The players trooped out, hmmmm, no new faces, there's Bodin, he's number 11, hmmm, HOLD ON! BODIN!

OK so we were three at the back, but BODIN THE WINGER? Anyway, despite the scoreline we were, hand on heart, the better team, the 1st 10 mins were all Reading, all in the Sheffield half, with 3 up front, Morley, Nogs, and, erm, McPherson, who seemed to have forgotten he was a defender, unless he hadn't realised which way we were kicking..... Sheffields first attack: John "20 Gilkes" Ebbrell puts in a decent cross, and there, poacherlike at the far post, was, erm, Bodin DOH!

Apart from that he had, honestly, (!) a good game , combining well with Geordie and Parkie to make a bit of space on the left and get some crosses in for, erm, no-one in particular. Even after going behind we carried on passing (yes!, passing!) it about but not doing much until, erm, they scored again with their 1st shot of the game, a low drive which left Minestrone with no chance.

STILL we carried on passing it about nicely, but with Martin the Fish seemingly in mourning for Moby the Sperm Whale the creative impetus was left with Geordie, who, freed from defensive duties by virtue of the fact that we had about 80 centre backs playing, did all that he could, making loads of Juninihoesque (honest!) runs, beating players, getting into good positions, only for his hapless team mates to cock it up. That said, everyone had a good game, including Hopkins (it's true!, honestly!), Holsgrove and McPherson.....good job we've signed a centre-back then isn't it? We had a few decent chances, but the keeper was in shot-stopping mood, pity his shot-stopping wasn't as good as his kicking (every single one sliced into oblivion), or we might even have scored a goal!

The problem was, despite all our possession, we were always met with a wall of their players, and nobody had the pace or creative instinct to open the defence, and they took their chances when they came (or we helped them out if they didn't), if only we'd had someone a bit nippy, on the wing say, to scare them with blistering pace and draw the defence out of position, create a bit of space for our forwards to work with....................

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