For that Tommyknockers experience on the Bench.
|A rather trim-looking|
bearded wonder with the cup.
Your fans all over the world salute you!
It was also confirmed that our Greek firecracker was no long ours. His move to Team Northumbria had been confirmed and that he had been offered a great deal to support his studies, something we couldn't compete with so we wish him all the best and yes...will never learn your name.
All I can say is: "να έχεις μια καλή μέρα".
I have no idea what that says but if Google translate is given me the phrase for "May your moussaka always be tasty" I apologise. Blame Google translate.
The lads who were left were on a run of good results based on teamwork and great effort, even Shanks had been known to pass the ball, so there was a good deal of optimism for the game. Yet again, however, we had a kit clash as Town appeared in a Purple kit that made it difficult for those people with poor vision to see the difference between the teams. That means me! Why couldn't they have been made to wear the kit that Newton Aycliffe worn the previous week and still, probably, lay in the corner of their changing room?
There was no Tom Flynn so the relatively unknown Sean Gordge stood in. The first action centred on Callum Patton, who pulled up, limped off, limped back on then soon after limped back off again to be replaced by Aiden Haley. The squad was getting thinner: 17 and counting?
Rumours were that there was a scout from Fleetwood Town in the crowd so we were wondering who he/she (don't want to be accused of sexism) was looking for. Shanks, though seemed to be on overdrive as he chased everything and never complained once to the ref. It was therefore, a just reward when Robbo crossed beautifully for an outstretched Shanks-foot to volley home superbly.
There then followed another ball-gate controversy when James Dawson in the visiting goal fumbled a corner. The ball then appeared to bounce off the back of a defender and in the ensuing scramble, it crossed the line by about 3 foot. We all spotted it (even me), the Bay players celebrated but the ref and linesman completely missed it...again. The sooner goal-line technology is installed at Hillheads, the better. I'm sure the Bay's Mr Twitter would volunteer to help out, when he's not doing everything else!
On 31 minutes, the ground was stunned when Town's Thibault Charmey (their French world cup youth winner, apparently) finished perfectly, high to Gordge's right hand post. Soon after Josh Nearney and Shanks combined perfectly for Shanks to hit a screamer that just missed.
There was a real indicator that winter was coming (Any news from the wall?) because Tommy the Tea impresario had abandoned his baseball cap in favour of his Bay beanie hat! It's going to be a cold one! He was stunned when both the Boy Mark and I followed the two ladies in front of us in ordering hot chocolate instead of the usual tea and bovril.
"I'll never look at you two in the same way!" he noted with a wistful shake of his beanie-covered head. As we enjoyed our half time choccy feasts, we watched the confident Logan Powell slam shots in from outside the box. As we reminded him, helpfully, it wasn't outside the box he needed to concentrate on, it was about three yards out.
The Bay continued to press in the second half but gradually Town came back into the game and Gordge's handling looked pretty confident and the defence held firm. Tackle of the match went to supersub Haley, who perfectly robbed a Town defender when it looked like he only had to beat Gordge to equalise.
Shanks, again, then had an effort close in, which was saved by an outstretched keeper's foot when it seemed destined for the corner.
It was the impressive Fryatt, who sealed the win when he was put in by the equally impressive Nearney, who was steaming forward at every opportunity, to blast the ball past the flailing Dawson.
3-1 could have been a lot more but a fourth just wouldn't come. Once again it had been a team effort. Nick Allen had another superb game with some great interceptions. Four wins on the trot is a fantastic effort after the previous poor run and the lads fully deserved to stand seventh in the league.
Sadly I will miss my first Classicoast (yes, I've bowed to peer group pressure in calling it that instead of El Coastico which is a Shields creation, allegedly). Having to take my eldest daughter to look at Huddersfield University, I know where I would prefer to be. But fear not I will return for the match at Morpeth in the Northumberland Senior Cup. Fingers crossed for the big game and good luck lads, after all our dear local rivals are only top of the league and unbeaten at home! Haway the Bay!