Away Day Robins


The latest trip for the famous Blackburn & Darwen Robins was the away game towards to the end of last season at Flixton.
Jimmy ‘mad-dog’ Hughes, Michelle and Fat Phil came round to my house at 1-30. “Where’s Big Dave?” I asked. “Over at McDonalds on the motorway services,” said Michelle. Well, there’s a surprise! Picked Dave up then shot over to Great Harwood to get some supplies for the house from Thomco Building Supplies. If you want quality then Thomco’s the place to go. Set off for the lost city of Flixton with plenty of time to spare, and after the last trip via the Trafford Centre, I decided that if we came off the M60 a junction early, then we’d miss the shopping traffic, especially with it being a bank holiday. Off we came at Junction 2 and headed towards Irlam. When we got there, all we had to do was head towards Urmston and we’d pass through Flixton. Unfortunately, some clown had built a canal so although we could actually see Flixton’s ground across the water, we had to go back to the M60 and across the bridge before we could get there. As we approached the Motorway junction, we passed a retail park which listed Burgerking, Pizza Hut and Kentucky Fried Chicken amongst its clients. Suddenly, Fat Phil yanked on the handbrake and we skidded onto the grass verge and into some bushes. “What the hell are you playing at ?” I screamed. “I’m starving, let’s go on a ‘food crawl’,” said Phil. “No chance, we’re late already.” I said. With that, Phil jumped out of the car and headed towards Burgerking. “We’ll pick you up at 5 O’clock,” I shouted, and we set off to continue our journey. We arrived at the ground in plenty of time but the car park was already full thanks to the usual big Harwood following. Into the clubhouse for a pre-match pint where we met the rest of the ‘Robins Crew’.
After the derby win at Darwen, the players started with renewed confidence and for the first twenty minutes there was only one team in it. Mash had two ‘one on ones’ but couldn’t convert either of them as Harwood dominated proceedings. Then, a dubious penalty was given after a tackle by Greeny on the edge of the box. Although Bobby saved a spot kick just two days earlier at Darwen, he was given no chance with this one and Flixton were ahead against the run of play. Harwood continued to dominate and it was no surprise when we equalised through Mashiter, and not long afterwards a terrific move involving Dean, Pope and Goulthorpe ended with the latter converting to give the Robins a deserved half time lead.
Sadly, Flixton lost their heads in the second half and the visitors came in for some harsh treatment from the home players. Not surprisingly, one was sent off, shortly followed by his manager, who needed two dismissals before he finally got the message and left the field of play. Luckily, the Robin’s players kept their heads and thanks to some weak Flixton finishing and some superb last ditch defending by Bobby and the boys, we held on for three precious points.
Bearing in mind the mood of the home side and officials, we, along with the players, decided that it would be best if we had our post match pint somewhere else.
We set off to pick up Fat Phil at Urmston and found him finishing off a family meal for four at Pizza Hut. Seeing as it was Easter, we decided to go ‘Up-market’ and stopped off at a rather posh hotel just outside Rochdale. “Now Michelle, whatever you do, don’t upset the landlord,” I said.
As we approached the bar, the barman was talking to a ‘Poofta’ in a green bow-tie and pink trouser suit. “Hey, Michael Barrymore, when you’ve finished chatting up your boyfriend, we’ll have four pints over here!” Shouted Michelle in her usual diplomatic way. “We don’t serve riff-raff like you in here,” retorted the Nancy boy. “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn!” Came Michelle’s reply, and in her poshest voice she said, “I do believe that the smoked salmon’s awf.”
Of course the good thing about getting barred from all these pubs, is that we do get home early. Join us for the next trip – there’s never a dull moment!!

Rally round the robins!

Go to the Harwood Home Page Go to the Harwood Home Page Contacts Page Take a look at our souvenirs
©2009 J Fenton