Bristol Manor Farm v Frome Town FC
Saturday 26th January, 2008
Toolstation Western League League
The Creek, Sea Mills, Bristol
A mixture of a) girlfriends being away, b)sporting activities being postponed and c) simply nothing better to do (me) saw the four of us spend a Saturday afternoon watching the Toolstation Premier League game between Bristol Manor Farm and Frome Town.
The roads to the all seater stadium were packed as the jubilant home fans sought a space for a fixture that would see them move to the top of the league if they won. Sadly this was the Bristol City crowd and we were heading straight past it in order to watch a bunch of talentless oafs play a game in front of a handful of family members and social misfits (hello!). Programmes purchased and pin pics laughed at we took our seats in the all seater stand which in reality consisted of chairs that weren’t damaged in a clubhouse fire last summer scattered haphazardly.
All good football articles give some background information to the clubs involved. Bristol Manor Farm were formed in 1994 after Bristol Manor United merged with fading early 90’s pop group The Farm. Frome Town once sold a player to Southend.
BMF started the game on top, largely due to the expert coaching from UEFA Pro Licence holder Louis, sadly a failure to take their early chances was to cost the Causeway outfit dear. Frome went a goal up, then another one, and then one more around the half hour mark thanks to some defending that even Chris Brass would have found embarrassing . We took the 2nd goal as our cue to take a wander round the ground and savour the atmosphere (hmm…) on the terraces (paving slabs). We settled in a small terrace and stood next to the BMF bench to see how the manager would deploy to counteract the constant Frome attacks, instead we enjoyed 15 minutes of constant swearing from the boss, who swore more than Peter Reid with tourettes. The word “gutless” spent 5 minutes being chanted like some sort of weird mantra between the manager, the assistant and also the physio ( Qualifications required - access to a bucket and large sponge), in between times the assistant saw fit to pursue a particularly personal vendetta against the BMF number 4 for his inept display.
We continued around the paving slabs that lined the pitch and found that the pitch doubled as some sort of animal graveyard, with both a dead hedgehog and pigeon in one corner. I speculated at the reasoning for this and thought maybe that BMF had hosted a pay per view animal death match in which the pigeon was forced to fight the hedgehog on the undercard of a drunken conversation World Championship fight of Polar Bear v. Lion. Or maybe the assistant manager, in a spectacular escalation of rage against his own centre back, had plucked a pigeon from the air and a hedgehog from the adjoining fields, crushed them with his bare hands and launched them at the centre back after a previous “gutless” performance and saw the airborn assault of deceased wildlife as the only way to inspire some ‘gut’. In conclusion I think the Frome fans probably ate the wildlife, this sort of behaviour is the norm in Somerset.
The 2nd half bumbles along with only some displays of trickery from the Rene Higuita* like ball skills from the BMF gloveman to keep the, seasons best, crowd of 103 entertained – sadly there was no Roger Milla.
* Minus the:
Jail term for involvement with a kidnapping
Extensive plastic surgery
Links to Pablo Escobar
Friendship with drug addled cheating twat Diego Maradona
In order to entertain us again we moved to the dugout area just in time to see BMF make a triple substitution and move to a 3-2-5 formation previously only seen in particularly desperate times on Championship Manager. The subs trotted wearily onto the pitch with the Churchillian words of “you can’t do any worse than the cunts already out there” to inspire them.
The assistant interrupts building a small plasticine voodoo model of his No.4 to discuss the game with Duncan and laments the early missed chances to which Duncan responded in the only way possible by uttering the most ridiculous of accepted football clichés “you’ve got to take your chances at this level”. Genius. I bow to you young Duncan for services to nonsensical clichés.
With about 15 minutes to go one of the subs is spared participating in the game anymore by being shown a straight red for carrying out every football pundit/correspondents latest hobbyhorse the “2 footed tackle”. The lanky forward (sporting bunched hair – FACT) walked off the side of the pitch, round the ground, through the supporters, all the time shouting “you’re a dick, that’s what you are” to the ref – a situation that could only have been improved by the ref bellowing “takes one to know one” and administering a playground style cock punch. Thankfully at the end of the game a mass fight broke out. Brilliant. There are few things better in football than a good scrap (A good scrap - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DbOyDBsDkQw). Sparked by a bad tackle from one of the Frome players this one contained the usual handbags, a few pushes and attempted punches. However this scrap was bettered by one player picking up the ball, throwing it and bouncing it off the head of an opposition player and making it one of the funniest incidents I’d seen involving a football since this (http://video.yahoo.com/video/play?vid=91318), my reaction to this incident was pretty similar to that at the end of this clip.
Anyways, somehow at the end of all this I stopped laughing and the portly officials decided to send 2 more BMF players off and one from Frome, just because they could. At the final whistle the ref was able to walk off without being severely harassed from players of both sides, didn’t have to have his decisions scrutinised in minute details and didnt have his decisions questioned by morons on football phone in shows hosted by imbeciles. I love you tinpot football.