MAIDSTONE UNITED 0 EASTBOURNE BOROUGH 0
Match Report by “IF SHE SHACK UP WITH BOJO, SHE A HO.”
Given that the denouement to this match had “Operation Shithouse” written all over it, the final whistle came as something of a relief. 0–0. When did that last happen at home?*
It’s three and half year since Tommy Widdrington did the Jazz Strut of shame, during Eastbourne’s only previous trip to the EPIAC, a match that somehow manages to seem like it took place both yesterday and several decades ago. That was an era when we turned up knowing that we were likely to either win, mount a stirring comeback for a draw or at least go down with a fight. Three seasons of taking it like Ned Beatty in Deliverance have dulled the senses and at the end no one really seemed to know what to think.
Widdrington’s successor, Lee Bradbury, also has form against us, having acted like an industrial-strength shitgibbon at Havant last year (hey, when in Rome) to get Elliot Romain sent off. That must have been an interesting conversation when he signed in pre-season.
The game? It’s difficult enough to write any zinging content when you’re given free range to swear like the Bishop of Durham when he’s coming down from a ketamine binge, so pity the club’s poor social media operative, who has to to Tweet “The Generic Hashtag For Me” at the end of every single update, no matter how banal. On a night like this, that takes some feat of discipline and the effect is almost trance-like.
20: There’s absolutely fuck all happening here and I’m pondering the futility of existence. Love heart emoji #TheTeamForMe
44: Chances at a premium here but at least we’re not getting launched by a gang of spunky-fingered thundercunts for “busting their accas”. Love heart emoji #TheTeamForMe
77: Spoke to soon. We’ve just been c-bombed by a 57-year-old virgin from Tiptree who’s put us down for a home win and stands to lose £50 if we don’t score in the next 13 minutes. Although he obviously doesn’t stand to lose his self-esteem because that rode out of town a long time ago. #SchoolShooter #ProbableNonce
Someone at the club has almost certainly been on a course where they’ve been told how important #hashtagging is by an energetic trainer, whose enthusiasm stems from the fact he/she has probably raked in north £500 for hosting a seminar that doesn’t actually make a #blind #bit #of #difference.
The game was boring, but almost pleasantly so. Corne had a decent effort early on, curling a shot that the keepaaaaah clawed out of the corner. They had an attack that was halted by the ref a split second before Elliott arrowed a shot that was so far off target it was parallel to the goal line.
And that was about it. To relieve the tedium I actually clicked on the aforementioned #gashtag at one point. Another club called Egremont Rovers are using it as well, but otherwise no one seemed to be jumping this particular train.
And talking of trains … how is it that we are still utterly shit at corners? It doesn’t matter who’s in charge, the outcome is invariably the same. Adopt the love train formation, leave no one on the far side of the box, allow opposition to gather overhit cross, watch as opposition surge down the field.
The difference between now and our last meeting was illustrated by the highlights Stones TV posted a few hours before the game. Whether it was a Flisher long throw or a Karagiannis set-piece, we really shat teams up. Going into the final 20 minutes you knew the Town End was going to feel like the Alamo for the opposition but for a while now it’s seemed like the visitors are more likely to score from our corners than we are.
On one occasion in the second half Greg Luer, who once had a loan spell with us so forgettable he might have been one of Harry Wheeler’s bitches (admittedly harsh on him given he did well at Woking last year), countered down the right, roasted our defence and grazed the post, the closest either side came to scoring all night.
We had a decent spell when Olutade came on and the atmosphere finally started to build, but the best chance fell to the prodigal Wishart, who couldn’t get his effort on target.
They arguably finished the stronger, meaning the final whistle came as something of a relief, particularly when they made an absolute Iain Duncan Smith of a chance in injury time.
It felt weird. But it was still a fuck’s sight better than getting beaten like the proverbial ginger stepchild.
- Incidentally, when Corne was replaced by Iffy Allen on 59 minutes, it meant we had 9 black players on the field, which is almost certainly a record. No one batted an eyelid and I mention this purely in the hope that the Kenneth Noye lookalike from the VIP gantry is somehow made aware of this fact and that he boils in a cauldron of his own piss.
- *Halifax at the end of the 2017–18 season?