Chelsea Transfer Target
Feb 18, 2012, 10:52 PM
Team(s): Not any more
...second part of a North West double which began with North One West rugby union at Sandbach
Re: [mip] Where are you going - where did you go? ICE HOCKEY
Saturday 18th February 2012
Manchester Phoenix 2 Guildford Flames 2 (0-0, 0-1, 2-1)
English Premier League Cup semi-final first leg
Admission £14 (ouch!)
Programme £3 (terribly overpriced)
Attendance 750 (estimate)
Absolutely fabulous contest between the two heavyweights of the EPL. There was very little to separate the teams (respectively second and first in the table) throughout a tense encounter and a draw was a fair result. Guildford, to the delight of their small army of travelling fans, are now in the box seat for the second leg. Only the frame of the goals kept the first period scoreless. Guildford's Nathan Rempel hit the bar and team-mate David Longstaff struck a post before Phoenix's lively raider Tom Duggan contrived to get a shot to hit both posts before rolling away from the net. Josef Kahut (35:40) eventually broke the deadlock when a Rick Plant assist gave him a gaping goal to aim at. Manchester seemed to be running out of ideas, but equalised through a splendid James Archer (43:19) slap shot from range which rocketed into the top corner. Longstaff (52:48) looked to have won it for the Surrey men when he popped in a soft goal, but the hosts gave themselves some hope for the second leg thanks to Ciaran Long's (53:39) superbly worked and finished close-range effort. Phoenix keeper Steve Fone twice denied Rempel in one-on-ones as a superb match reached a pulsating climax.
After Seagull's earlier disparaging remarks about the viewing at the Silver Blades ice rink in Altrincham, I feared the worst. But from the back row on the halfway line, it was fine. Much better than at Guildford, certainly! What you couldn't see directly below, TV screens suspended from the ceiling relayed in real time. Decent venue, I thought, despite not being especially new. There are raised seating tiers on each side and at the near end. Low marks for Manchester's merchandise stall - in a word, pitiful! Unfortunately, both sets of fans included drummers. Why are these attention seekers allowed to bring in their instruments of torture? The din must (surely) cheese off more spectators than it pleases. Or am I just an old git?
(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Feb 18, 2012, 10:52 PM)