Sunday 23rd October 2005
By Neil Connelly
With Steve Pester, Daragh Knott, Matt Pragnall, Lee Cleaver, Gary Harrigan, and Mark Edwards all missing for various reasons, two injured substitutes in Matty the Muffin Wright and Village neither of whom could run for 9 seconds let alone 90 minutes, a third substitute Chris Bradshaw who had been told not to play any sport until he had seen his physio on Monday (although Village did recommend he see a dietician instead), and a defence with a combined age of 132 years including 40th birthday boy Andy Cobham, our One Armed Manager certainly had his work cut out on Sunday morning.
However what we lacked in numbers the team certainly make up for in spirit and our thanks go to Sam Small and Jumbo for helping out at short notice – you now qualify for the Sunday team end of season trip if you want to come along but as tour virgins would have to share a room with Shaun Keddle.
The first twenty minutes were a bit of a struggle basically because Eltham played four 20 year old sprinters up front and it took a while for the defence to catch their breath, sadly by the time this happened we were one down after we were unable to deal with a long ball over the top which caught us a bit square.
However our midfield soon began to get their foot on the ball and exploit the space left by Eltham’s forward thinking wingers with Ray Perkins in particular causing problems with his direct running style, and it was after a good cross from Ray that ginger Dave equalised from close range at the back post after half an hour.
It remained level until 15 minutes into the second half when we got a free kick about 25 yards out and up stepped Awesome Dawson. Those of us who have been lucky enough to play with Adam have seen him score dozens and dozens of fantastic goals over the years but what followed was pretty special even by his standards. Adam hit the ball right footed over the near side of the wall into what looked like the wrong top corner of the net where it got stuck in the stanchion and just stayed there – it was a brilliant brilliant goal that definitely stunned Eltham.
For the next 15 minutes the boys streamed forward and a move that started with Jumbo’s throw out ended up in Eltham’s net 20 seconds later when after a flowing team move the ball was curled into the bottom corner of the goal by Adam following great work by Barry Chuckle.
Despite some late pressure we hung onto our two goal lead and stretched our unbeaten run to 4 games with just four goals conceded in that time and 13 scored which is a great effort.
There were good performances all over the park with Judgie and Ginger running themselves to a standstill in the middle (hopefully Daragh will be back next week to sort out Judgie''s groin), Adam Benny having a great game at the back in front of his watching Daddy, Jason playing 90 minutes for the first time in ages in front of his baby daughter who strangely thought that Tant was her dad during the second half!!! the Chuckle brothers covering every blade of grass over and over again before disappearing off back to the family shoe for a lie down with brother Lee, and obviously Adam for scoring one of the best goals at the club in years – so good in fact that I hugged an Arsenal fan for the first time in my life – not ideal.
However man of the match went to Jumbo for a couple of great saves and a very commanding performance – well done mate.
This week another home game against Prince of Wales and a win would make it 10 points out of 12 in October (Tant did say he wanted a big October) which would be great especially because the following week we have a week off and it would be nice to go into this break on the back of another solid win. By the way if anyone fancies going to the Capital Radio Fire Work display at Crystal Palace on November 5th please see Barry Chuckle as he has got some spare tickets and is looking for someone to keep him company.