Away Day Robins
Glossop North End
The latest report comes from the trip to Glossop North End last month. The famous Blackburn and Darwen Robins set off to deepest, darkest Derbyshire at around tea time, with me, Fat Phil, Michelle, Jimmy ‘Mad-Dog’ and Billy ‘The-Kid’ Hughes.
Unfortunately, when we’ve a night game, we’ve not been able to nip down to Thomco for our quality building materials and expert advice, so it was straight down the M.65 and M60. Despite it being around tea time, there were no hold ups and we arrived in Glossop at 7 0’clock. Time for a pre-match pint.
“Michelle, please don’t upset the landlord like you normally do,” I said.
“You know me, I’d never say anything to upset anyone,” said Michelle mischievously.
As we walked into the Snooty Fox, we were given the ‘evil eye’ by the landlord. Maybe it had something to do with Jimmy blowing the bugle as we entered the pub!
Now I know that the landlord was tall and had a dodgy moustache, but there was no need for the opening shot form Michelle.
“OY, BASIL FAWLTY, FIVE PINTS OF BITTER!”
The landlord took one look at Jimmy and asked if he was eighteen.
“HE’S NOT SUPPI’ YOU CLOT, THE FIVE PINTS ARE MINE!” Nice one Michelle.
“GET OUT!! YOU’RE ALL BARRED!” Screamed Mine Host.
There’s one thing about our away trips, there’s no chance of the driver going over the drink-drive limit!
Into the ground and looking forward to the first away win of the season against the struggling home side. Having been here before we knew that after two dry days the pitch would be rock hard and very bumpy, but we were surprised to see that it was entirely covered in grass-it’s usually rock hard mud. As usual we had an excellent following of around twenty.
The first half was quite a scrappy affair with neither side being able to string more than a couple of passes together on the tricky surface. The Robins had the first good chance of the opening half when the home keeper made a complete hash of a clearance and presented John Eastham with a golden opportunity from just outside the box. With the keeper stranded on the penalty spot, all Easty had to do was kick the ball over the goalie for 1-0. Sadly for us he lofted it over the bar as well. The only other chance of note in the half resulted in a goal line clearance from a headed effort, keeping us level at the break.
At the interval we tried the pies-bad move! You’ve heard the record ‘Ernie’ by Benny Hill? Well you know how it goes-‘The concrete-hardened crust of a stale pork pie caught in the eye and Ernie bit the dust’, well Two Ton Ted form Teddington, Ernie’s love-rival, must have got his pie from Glossop North End!
The second half was more of the same and despite a tremendous effort by the Robins’ players, we struggled to impose ourselves on a pretty average home side. With Mash missing, Easty was far too isolated up front and we rarely looked like breaking the deadlock. Half way through the second period Glossop made the breakthrough when a harshly awarded free kick took a wicked deflection and left Bobby Harris with no chance.
We stepped it up a gear and finally began to make an impression. A great run by Easty ended with a fantastic save by the keeper who pushed the ball onto the post.
Another effort flashed inches past the post, but the crucial moment came about 15 minutes from the end when Dennis Hill bamboozled a defender 10 yards from goal. Leaving him for dead, Blondie made his way to goal before being cynically brought down for a certain penalty. We were just a few yards from the incident, as was the Ref. but incredibly, despite having his Guide Dog with him, he saw nothing wrong. Where do they get them from?
The second goal was one of the biggest flukes you’re ever likely to see. A shot from the edge of the box hit the bar, bounced down against Bobby, hit the post, and trickled over the line.
The lads kept going till the end but they must have realised, as we had, that it wasn’t going to be our day.
As the final whistle blew, we just had time to abuse the Ref. before making our way despondently to the car. We were so fed up that we went straight home. Once again we’d travelled to a game against an average side and come away pointless.
By twenty past ten we were back in Darwen and as we approached the Motorway turn off Billy’s phone rang.
“Yes we lost again, O.K. see you in a few minutes Hammy.” Said our love-struck buddy.
“Ah, that’s nice, is Hammy the pet-name for your girlfriend Billy?” I asked.
“No, I call her that because she’s got a fat face and she never stops eating!”
And they say that romance is dead!
As we came off the Motorway, fat Phil insisted that we stop off at McDonalds, after all, it had been over an hour since his last meal.
Dropped everyone off and got home at about 10-30, just as my better half was nodding off.
“Oh, hi, how did they get on?”
“There’s no need for sarcasm!”
Never mind, we’ll still be there at the next game, proper supporters like the Blackburn & Darwen Robins get behind their team even when the going gets tough.
Join us for the next trip, there’s never a dull moment, and remember……….
Rally round the robins!