This week the MFB discusses penalties, St John’s, pasty and schoolboy errors
WITH a tingling sensation that is usually requires a trip to the pharmacy, the Cu-Plas FA Cup occupied the island’s footballing consciousness at the weekend.
All four of last Saturday’s quarter-final ties offered up points for discussion none more so than at the hotly contested encounter between DHSOB and St George’s at Blackberry Lane where the assembled crowd had the drama of a contentious penalty to mull over.
There seems to have been evidence to support both sides of Alan Cowin’s spot-kick decision – ultimately he awarded it in Old Boys favour, Craig Stewart slotting home to give the home side a decisive 2-1 lead as they ended St George’s grand slam dream.
How the result will affect the Glencrutchery Road outfit remains to be seen. Most likely it will drive Chris Bass Sr’s squad on to do well in their remaining league and Hospital Cup matches as they aim to finish the campaign with the treble firmly encased in the Geordies’ trophy cabinet.
However, the result may shake a little the resolve of the previously undefeated side, which would have probably preferred to have been in action this weekend instead of having the free week they do.
Geordies ‘bouncebackability’ adds an interesting sub-plot to the end of the season that had threatened to become a little monotonous.
Saints or sinners
I was patrolling the sideline at another of Saturday’s last-eight ties, Division Two St John’s home tie with Laxey. Again this fixture offered much for the footballing connoisseur to digest.
The Saints look certs to return to the Canada Life Premier League and the weekend’s encounter was seen as a gauge as to how they will do next season back in the top flight.
A depleted Laxey side offered a potential scalp for the westerners, but it failed to materialise as the Miners used their top-flight nous to negotiate the tie.
The match wasn’t much of an indication as how the Mullen-e-Cloie outfit will do next term with both teams a little below par.
The Saints seem to have all the ingredients to make a successful return to the top flight, but that’s what was thought about Douglas Royal. Stephen Glover is undoubtedly a PL striker, but the one key difference might be the presence of Nick Hurt in the westerners fold. The experienced island cap kept Michael in the top-flight last season and his will and determination off and on the pitch may prove vital to a St John’s side that is similar in personnel to the one relegated at the end of the 2009-10.
Again Pasty Watch was undone by its own good work on Saturday afternoon. My shameless attempts to promote the cause of the humble half-time snack seem to have propelled the aforementioned pastry snack into the football watching publics’ consciousness once again, as not for the first time this season, I found upon arrival at the Mullen-e-Cloie kitchen that they’d sold out of pasty. This most harrowing of predicaments has already happened to me at Ballacloan earlier this term, but that didn’t make Saturday any easier…
The 14th man: An apology
In all my pasty-less confusion I missed Laxey substitute Michael Wheeler second-half introduction off the ‘Team check’ section of my report in Monday’s Examiner.
The following email from my former futsal team-mate brought his grievance to my attention:
‘Obviously you missed my tremendous sideline banter, precision cross across the St John’s six-yard box and the ball I took to my nether regions, as I didn’t earn a mention in your match report.’
I got the impression he wasn’t cross just disappointed, but either way Mikey I offer you an unreserved apology for my oversight…
Right that’s it for this week’s assorted tripe.
I’ll be seeing how many times I can crowbar the phrases ‘relegation dogfight’ and ‘six pointer’ into my match report this weekend as I take in Michael’s encounter with Gymns.
Click back next week to see how my trip to the western republic went…