Trinity terrorised by treble twosome
By James Weatherall
On a day when we played the Trinity, it seemed fairly apt that this game would be all about the 3's.
Apparently, Trinity is some god bothering nonsense about the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. Well this game was all about a different kind of Trinity; the Hanson, the Mitchell and the Holey Gav.
For the 15th time since Malin's inception, we headed off to Handsworth Grange School, this time to play Division 3B whipping boys, Sheffield Trinity. The sun was shining, the pitch was in good knick and after the previous week's comeback, everybody seemed ready to dish out another beating.
After a good start to the season, the only disappointment seems to be that we don't like to start playing until 11am. In order to buck this trend, the management turned to financial bribes to wake everyone up. A promise of free subs to the first scorer before the 15th minute.
The incentive of saving a fiver seemed to have an effect. Right from the kick off, we seemed more on our game with us playing some decent football and creating a few chances to test the big lad in goal. Unfortunately, once again, the breakthrough wouldn't come with good efforts by GAV B, BROWNY and MITCH all failing to open the scoring. The management breathed a sigh of relief as minute 15 ticked by.
Our positive early start continued. BROWNY was getting some joy in the channels but couldn't seem to find either a clear opportunity, nor one of our men in the box from one of his cutbacks. We were getting a lot of ball out wide but seemed to struggle to put in the final killer ball. Around the 25th minute, we finally found the cross that would lead to the breakthrough. GAV B picked the ball up on the left and swung in a delightful cross to NATH who set himself and then stuck his large cranium on the ball, directing it perfectly over the keeper.
It was hoped that the first goal would see us run away with the game but that wasn't the case. Despite a couple more efforts, it was Trinity who would have the next clear cut opportunities. Once again, we were undone by a long ball over the top on the break. A poor free kick from WEATH was headed away to the little floater in the middle of the park, he turned and played a good ball over the top for the big lad. The "Chief" as he was called and DEE had a foot race but a slide challenge by the defender fell kindly to the forward. DAN rushed out but somehow big Chief sneaked through that challenge and all he had left to do was slot it home. Unfortunately for him, WEATH had got back on the line and he struggled to put it round my chunky frame. Let off number 1.
A short time later and another ball over the top caught us out. Chief ran through and DAN charged out again, this time he chose to go for the first time lob which fell agonisingly (for them) wide of the post. Let off number 2. This seemed to spur us into action again but there would be no further goals. 0-1.
We headed out for the second half with the same line up and the intention of finishing the game early in the half. After 10 minutes of nothingness, we finally got the second goal which should've seen the game to bed. BROWNY and his dancing feet made their way into the box, leaving defenders in his wake but just as he went to lay it off their clumsy oaf of a centre half chose to bundle through the back of him. Penalty. After NATH's recent miss, there was a bit of indecision as to who would step up but MITCHELL won the argument and slotted it home.
With this goal, we thought we would simply steamroller Trinity but a mad 2 minute spell temporarily laid that idea to rest. The home side got a corner which was cleared back out to the taker. Being unorganised as ever, we charged out without any thought of who we were marking. The ball back into the box was palmed clear by DAN but only as far as the little lad who cleverly looped the ball back over everybody and into the empty net.
This caused quite a bit of frustration and the finger pointing was still going on whilst we took the kick off. The lack of concentration was to be our downfall again. We lost the ball quickly, with it again falling to the dwarf and he dinked it over to the big lad, who looked suspiciously offside. The ref played on and the forward got his shot away. A good save low down by DAN wasn't rewarded with any luck as it fell kindly to their winger who tucked it home into the gaping net. 2-2. Unbelievable.
From what seemed like a stroll in the park we were now looking like dropping points. This seemed to be the kick up the arse that we needed, there would be no more messing about. A short time later and we started to play football again and the ball found itself at NATH's feet this time. From a central position and about 20 yards out he calmly hammered the ball home low beyond the keepers despairing dive.
Up until this point the game had been played in fairly good spirits but a tackle on SPY by Trinity's second goalscorer caused a bit of a flashpoint. Their man squealed whilst holding his throat. At first glance I thought SPY had got him in the old Duncan Ferguson chokehold but the opposition man claimed he had been elbowed. Over the years, SPY has mastered the art of looking innocent and as the ref didn't see anything, a stern talking to was all that could be dished out.
Shortly after, we restored our two goal lead. Another good ball into the box by GAV B found MITCHELL's head and he guided it home. With Trinity's resolve now broken, we were attacking at will. Again, we found MITCHELL free in the box and after controlling it neatly, he thought about finishing it, then he thought a bit more, then finally, after what seemed like an age, smashed it into the bottom corner to seal his hat trick. The match ball would be his or would it?!
With the game dead and buried, the subs came on. RADDS for SPY, DEAN for HIRSTY and GAV M for MITCHELL.
Despite us scoring 5 goals, BROWNY still hadn't managed to get his name on the scoresheet. Quite a rarity this season. With time running out, we got another penalty and this time no one was taking the ball off him. As it turns out, someone should have. He placed the ball on the spot and confidently trotted forward but the keeper guessed right and pushed his effort away.
Less than a week after having a hole cut in his stomach, GAV insisted he was fit to come on (but only up front!). His cameo role turned into quite an eventful one. The defenders were not really sure how to handle his bustling style and when the ball came in the box, one of the defenders turned to brute force to shove him out of the way. The ref couldn't ignore it and awarded the 3rd penalty of the day. After forfeiting the earlier chance to match MITCHELL's hat trick, NATH decided this time to put his recent miss behind him and put the ball down. We all wondered whether he would opt for a different style but no, pace and power straight down the middle is his way and this time he kept it underneath the bar. Another hat trick.
A final goal was added late on by GAV M with a stonking header from a beautifully swung in corner by a sausage roll powered Lee Bennett.
7-2 the final score. In reality, it could've been more and should've been 0 against but few complaints. A very close contest for Man of the Match this week but MITCHELL took the award. Whether NATH's shoving match with their opposition manager had an impact, we will never know...
FERGIE will be back from doing water aerobics in St Lucia to take up the reins from next week. Tough few games coming up. As he would say, "GET READY!!".