First Team Sub
May 23, 2019, 10:48 PM
Post #1 of 4
Birks Cup Final. KO 19:00. (F&N). Crowd 38
Breadalbane 2 v 0 Vale of Atholl
My thanks to prorege who messaged me to say the venue had changed. Home Street Aberfeldy is the base for Breadalbane and apparently the cup final is played here every year. Enclosed ground with a dugout, changing rooms and a wooden fence around the pitch.
As you can see from the crowd the game failed to capture the imagination of the locals and was won with two first half goals from the hosts who were clearly the better side. Played in a good spirit with just a couple of yellow cards and refereed calmly throughout. Great setting in the Perthshire Hills. Yorkie Exile for company throughout
A pre match pint was taken at the Black Watch pub, short walk from the ground. The drive up and back through great scenery along the A822 and A826, particularly through Griffin forest.
Youth Team Star
May 24, 2019, 1:43 AM
Post #2 of 4
Cheshire & Manchester Sunday League Division 1
Manchester Maccabi v Davyhulme Park
KO was 6.33pm (3 mins late)
No entrance fee, or programme
Crowd was 9, although reduced to 8 for the 2nd half as 3 left and 2 arrived
FT was: Manchester Maccabi 1 Davyhulme Park 6
This was my first visit to Brooklands despite living not that far away. It is the Sports & Social Club for the local Jewish community and the building included a cafe, although I didn't have a look in.
The ground is nice and smart with the pitches well maintained. Both pitches have a sturdy wooden crowd barrier down one side, though there is no hard standing. The pitch the match was on is elevated slightly over the other one, and there is a also an elevated part to stand on for this pitch opposite the crowd barrier side.
Not that there was much of a crowd for this battle for 3rd place. Manchester Maccabi had won on Tuesday night 3-0 and so if they beat Davyhulme, they would clinch 3rd place from them as they could no longer catch Maccabi.
But that's nothing like what actually happened. The visitors dominated and led 5-0 by the break - several goals were keeper errors and it looked like it might be record goals for me (which is 12 (4-8) for a friendly, or 11 (10-1) for a cup game, or 10 (9-1 & 3-7) for a league game.
8 min 0-1 - push on keeper, who then dropped the ball, Davyhulme tapped in, ref gave it
18 min 0-2 penalty
20 min 0-3 easy goal
22 min 0-4 easy goal
38 min 0-5 easy
2nd half was a bit different, as it stayed 5-0 for much of the time. Maccabi started to finally get into the game a bit, but did go further behind as we approached the closing stages. They finally scored with injury time approaching.
So the battle for 3rd place goes to the final game
Overall. a very pleasant ground and I'm sure next time I visit, the keeper will be in better form!
(This post was edited by simonsm on May 24, 2019, 1:44 AM)
First Team Star
May 24, 2019, 7:55 AM
Team(s): Sunderland AFC, Keighley Cougars RL
Post #3 of 4
Coventry Telegraph Cup Final
Coventry Copsewood 3-2 Triumph Athletic (at Ricoh Arena)
Admission £5, Programme £1
My only previous visits to the Ricoh had been for Rugby League, so a first football tick.
The first half was a somewhat cagey affair. Copsewood, from the Midland League, had more possession and territory than their Coventry Alliance opponents, but defences were on top. It took a somewhat dubious penalty decision on 42 minutes to break the deadlock. From my seat, the foul looked to be outside of the area, but a penalty was given, and Triumph's number 7 scored from the spot.
Copsewood thought they had equalised with almost the last kick of the half, but the flag went up for offside. It took just 3 minutes after the interval for the equaliser though. Number 10 outpaced the defence down the right and lashed a fierce shot into the far corner.
On 62 minutes, Copsewood's number 3 curled a free kick in off the post to give them the lead, and the game looked to be won on 88 minutes. Number 10, with an almost identical run and finish to his first goal
Triumph came back with a second goal on 90 minutes, number 10 scoring, but there was no time for an equaliser.
The senior final was preceded by a schools final. Had I known this beforehand, I may have sneaked out of work early to watch that too.
"People do not have moments of truth in station waiting rooms"
May 24, 2019, 12:14 PM
Location: Outer Cheltenhamshire
Team(s): Cheltenham Town
Post #4 of 4
Rapperswil-Jona 1-4 FC Winterhur
Admission: Comp (otherwise CHF30 seated, CHF10 standing). Attendance 2010, Programme: Free
The final Swiss game of the tour comes in the Challenge League, (the second tier) on the Thursday. With the need to keep the same kick off times through the divisions for the final two rounds of fixtures, the league had chosen Wednesday and Saturday for the Super League, Thursday and Sunday for the Challenge.
Coming into this round, Servette had already won the title and a return to the Super League, Aarau and Lausanne-Sport were fighting for the play-off position, Aarau holding a single point advantage, Chiasso, who I had seen defeated at Winterhur a week ago were bottom and one point below Rapperswil-Jona, who were playing Winterhur in this round. While FC Schaffhausen and Kriens could still be caught, the single relegation place was clearly between the bottom two.
Our little group, having been spread out over three different games in the night previously met up again to check into a Zurich hotel. A little later we made the short ride out on the S-bahn to the town of Rapperswil. This lakeside town turned out to be much more pleasant and interesting than we had expected, with its own small castle atop a large rock overlooking the lake.
One upshot of this is the town is a bit of a tourist trap, and all the pleasant looking restaurants by the water side were selling for eye-watering prices. The Pizzaman and I had a pleasant walk around the town in the sunshine, before settling down in the Nelson pub, close to the station. I ordered a Swiss wheat beer, which was supplied in a small bottle, with a smaller glass (on request). When we were billed, it was my turn to question the pricing as my beer, already expensive was charged at one CHF higher than the menu. When questioned, the waitress went away and came back a few minutes later to accept that this was correct and took my CHF6.50 (£5) for the 33 cl of beer. Pizzaman insisted this was included in the report after I had mentioned his price dispute two days earlier.
From Rapperswil, it is another two minutes on another train to get to Blumental, where the ground is situated. The Sportplatz Grünfeld is a massive complex, so much so that we did not actually count the number of pitches there. There is a small café built into the corner of the stadium pitch and after obtaining our tickets, we went and sat outside.
We were met briefly by the club’s media officer and I explained about my project to write a book. He told us that the club had over 1,000 playing members, most of which would be at youth levels. In many European countries, membership is inclusive, rather than the elite only practised by English clubs (especially professional ones) – but still this is a very large club, especially considering that it is situated close to a smallish town.
The other thing we were told was that a budget of CHF 2.8 million (about £2.1 million) did not allow them to have all their players on full professional terms. My understanding is that many League-2 clubs in England are on similar budgets, and some National League clubs are fully professional for less.
To pay CHF 2.8 million (without making a loss), the club would need to have an income (for the professional side) of around CHF 4 million. Things would not be quite so straight forward as the youth sides would generate a very significant income (and cost) on their own.
The real benefit of large club structures is that it makes it economical to get well qualified coaches for all the young players in the district. The fragmented, volunteer driven system in the UK does not provide this for the non-elite players, resulting in a much smaller playing pool than otherwise might be found.
We were told that the TV contract is a significant boost to the earnings here. Ths suprised me a little, given that UEFA state the TV money is a relatively small percentage (6%) of the income for the Super League. It becomes clearer when one does the maths. The figure given by UEFA suggests that TV income in the Super League averages only €1.4 million per club, a figure that may well have increased in recent years. UEFA do not say how much the lower division gets, but it is a combined deal with good coverage for this level. If they got a third of the sum given to Super League, then this would still come out around 12% of the income a club like R-J requires to operate
The stadium pitch is basic, but functional. A large well elevated stand on one side, and a single concrete step to allow two levels of standing behind each goal. The long side opposite the stand is simply a flat path, while one of the ends is segregated. Plenty of beer being sold close to the entrance, plus the basic staples of sausages, frites, etc.
We could have no complaints about the game, an entertaining first half with both sides creating chances, hitting the post and bringing off the need for occasional saves. Rapperswil-Jona had put in a fair case for sharing the spoils at half time, even if Winterthur probably just had an edge.
The second half was different, Winterthur raised the edge into a cliff, and pushed R-J over it. The man who held the responsibility for this was Luka Sliskovic who scored twice and made the other as his side built up a 3-0 lead over the first half of the second period.
After 80 minutes, Roberto Alves pushed the ball through and Diago Yanz was stretched to push it away for a corner. Alves then went over the body of Yanz, and to our surprise the referee awarded the penalty. Remo Arnold did not share our opinions and converted the penalty, putting the visitors four up. R-J did bring one goal back, but it ended as a convincing loss.
The good news for the home club was that Chiasso also lost (at home to Aarau) and so nothing changed at the foot of the table. Rapperswil-Jona travel to Aarau on the final day, while Chiasso play at Wil. I do not expect either to pick up a point, which will mean that R-J will survive through to their third season at this level
Fat AND Pompous.
The proof that you can have too much of a good thing
Now blogging at http://www.leohoenig.com