Harboro Vets 2 Leicester R'd Vets 1
Bees Sting Leicester R'd In Cup Dress Rehearsal
Harboro vets 2 Leicester R'd vets 1
The mighty vets didn't have far to travel for their latest away game. Leicester Road switched venues and hosted HTFC at Bowden's Park. With only 6 days to go until both teams meet in the final, there was lots to play for. Tension filled the air, along with the usual stench of deep heat and stale farts as the gaffer announced his team.
Robbo and Rod were the notable absentees. Rod's 12 page essay on the history of why he'd found a better offer was greatly appreciated. The team: Lardy in nets, Kris, Shambles, Adam and Neil across the back. Midfield 3 of Scott, Captain Gaz and Stan. Nice guy Ian wide right and Fletch on the left. Little Chris playing as target man upfront. The bench welcomed Twinny, Motters and Cheesus.
Quite a nervy start didn't deliver a great deal. Leic Rd had the early edge and tested us with a few early corners. This led to the first major bit of action as Ian did his job on the post to clear off the line.
What HTFC lacked in flowing football and spells of possession were made up for with disciplined shape and getting stuck into the opposition. This led to the opposition's main threat being balls pumped at the back four that were generally well dealt with. The comedy referee ably assisted some smashing of the right back, centre half and holding midfielder with a lack of appetite to award free kicks or speak. It is great to see the FA support the efforts of the 'Mutes in the Community' scheme.
After about 25 mins it was 'no more Mr Nice Guy' as Ian was pulled for Twentyman.
All things added up to Leic Rd becoming impatient and half chances started to appear for the Bees. This led to a great chance. Chris escaped the offside trap on the right and attempted a shot from a narrow angle that went across the area. Fletch ran onto the loose ball at phenomenal speed and with Gaz O and Scott queuing for a tap in from a pull back, Fletch inexplicably shot at the one defender in the way. If Fletch had his chance to explain, he would advise that his composure and usual unselfish creative play was scuppered by a hamstring pull just before he got to the ball (who writes this crap?! -Editor i have an idea).
Fletch signalled the end of his game and hobbled off with dreams of a final appearance in tatters (editor notes - It was only ever a dream Fletch). On came The Motters to finish the physical job that had been started. Only minutes later, Twinny was put through on the right and finished smartly for 1-0.
This would have been a great position to go into halftime with, but our Arsenal like defending from a corner meant the gaffer had to inspire from a position of parity.
The second half got pretty messy, with the better chances falling to the opposition. Goal line clearances, fluffed chances and Lardy making saves (sounds strange), kept us in the game. Motters then made his presence known. Firstly with a comedy dive in the area that the ref chose to ignore in case he had to speak. Minutes later it seemed like Motters put his clock back an hour, rather than forwards, given how late he was into a challenge on the ill fated right back. Thankfully it was near the touch line, so it wasn't far to carry him and his limbs from the field. This didn't seem to enamour Motters to our guests and he was removed from the action for his (or their) protection. Some might say a harsh yellow card. Hannibal Lecter, Fred West or Jack the Ripper maybe!
On came Chee. Ian had started to perform heroics with the flag, either that or our defensive line was incredibly clinical. You choose. Our pace started to cause issues in the opposition half and this resulted in Twinny beating their centre half to a through ball and being upended in the box. Penalty (the ref indicated in sign language). Despite intimidation a shirt pull during his run up and zero confidence from the Gaffer, Twinny stepped up and bobbled the spot kick home with aplomb.
The highlights for the remainder of the game were Lardy injuring himself from a goal kick, Twinny avoiding his jug with his leap for a header having the same good timing as a Motters tackle, Shambles saving a lobbed through ball over his head that Lardy could learn from (Ian's trusty flag came to the rescue again) and Scott trying to crawl back to the half way line when cramp set in in both calfs. Oh yes and Lardy going walkabouts in the box despite the screams of all the defenders to 'be careful'!
So a 2-1 victory to take into the final that is unlikely to feature the visiting right back. A solid if not spectacular performance means we can step up a level to smash the final. Come on!!! Fletch went away with another 'Chump of the Week', based purely on the jealousy his good looks cause his teammates. Holmes Park awaits. We've proved we can win. Now let's do it!
This weeks tune https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9jK-NcRmVcw