The Seven Year Hitch

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The Seven Year Hitch

Post  Boz1964 on Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:51 pm

The Seven Year Hitch

Can you believe it that Phoenix Club Merthyr Town are now entering their seventh season since reforming from the ashes of Merthyr Tydfil FC ?

It has been seven tumultuous years since our football club came back from the wilderness days of 2010 and our temporary stay at Taff's Well ( Owen Money - I didn't know he was ill).

Seven years since the last strains of Mark Morrison's return of the Mack were first heard at Penydarren Park and our hardworking Trust and Unified Board breathed footballing life back into the Town.

And yet unbelievably some of our most hardworking and influential fans want to 'divorce' themselves after this tricky seven year period- just as the Club is righting itself after a difficult metamorphosis from Fan Owned to the new Business Model.

Sadly, this year of 2016 has been what the Queen would call an 'Annus Horribilis' for Merthyr Town fans with the year seeing lots of its terrace characters leave Penydarren Park for the last time with Martyrs mortality rates being comparable with those of Al Qaeda.

Last hope those who have left us have a new viewing platform which is better than the Dial M Fanzene 'classic' designation of the 'Ray Charles' sponsors box.

Now Merthyr Fans are blessed with some talented individuals, who helped raise the footballing equivalent of the Titanic from the Taff (Well) and it would be great to see all of the crew and some of the passengers United again for the sake of the Club.

Now more than ever YOUR Club needs them and your efforts, whether professional or just as 'talented amateurs' and the odd vicar in black n white , if football and future wedding ceremonies are to be held at the ground.

A divorce isn't finalised until it is made absolute and until then let's hope the trial separation makes the absence of the Big Heart of Merthyr even more missed than it was pre-season.

Now with a wedding reception in the main bar area today, it was amusing to watch so many sad faces like the Chelsea footballers last week climbing the Webley steps only to return empty handed without a pint on match day.

Now if that is not a genuine reason to divorce yourself from your football club on match day then I don't know what is.

But the Hitchin Town fans certainly sniffed out the path to the beer after their long haul from Hertfordshire to Wales .

After all that sunlight on the coach down then that in entering the darkened Romans Hall they must have felt like canaries in a coal mine.

The attendance looked down for the opening game of the season, but there did appear to be more ladies present- perhaps the fact Merthyr were rumoured as having to play without their promised new Macron kit and were expecting our Ryan Prosser to do the 'Full Ponty'

Speaking of Hitchin, last season's fellow also-rans must be fed up of this level of football , as they seem Evo-stuck to this League just like their most famous actress daughter, Sally Bretton, they are 'not going out' of this division easily - after spending seven long seasons in this soccer limbo.

But despite the return of the Mack....neither are we.

Much has been said that every club finds its level and without being accused of a lack of ambition, I believe like the Titanic we have bottomed out too.

But every season brings new optimism and today that came in the shape of new 'producer' Cameron.

Suddenly, the bruise of the loss of quality right back Scott Barrow to Gateshead has received an massive 'icepack' in the shape of the Bristol City loanee, Cameron Pring.

If Merthyr were minus a 'sinking fund' for the pitch, they have now found a 'lifesaver' in the shape of this talented youngster.

SuperGav promised he wouldn't recruit any new players unless they were of a superior standard than what he already had and Cameron was living proof of this.

He didn't come from a Pring and Buy sale.

But one player doesn't make a defence, even if he slotted naturally into our new look back line with ease and executed one slide tackle that had the seasoned Merthyr Fans purring with approval.

He already compliments the centre half pairing made from the Wright Stuff, Tancs and of course First Man on the Team Sheet, Adam Davies.

And with Oliver Davies restored to the goal, If I could be so 'Bold' I predict we will have more clean sheets this season than a Persil Advertisement.

Davies reminds me of a young Peter Bonetti- but not so much 'Cat' more like 'Leopard' in the way he lies on top of the crossbar mid-'game' waiting to pounce on the ball.

But today even 'The Leopard' was outshone by the away keeper, Michael 'Magic' Johnson.

Some Martyrs will recall he was the difference between the two sides in last season's dramatic playoff semi-final and how he kept that last-minute header out from Jarrad Wright is still subject of a criminal investigation by the South Wales Police ( most of them were sat on the front row that night).

Clad in a very fetching Hitchin Lavender colour, the modern day Vitruvian Man keeper, shone brighter than the late Summer sun bouncing off the bald pates of the Home Fans on the Theatre End.

He singlehandedly or in fact quadhandedly kept out the Merthyr attackers with a string of saves he had no right to get to.

No matter how much 'Fire' Merthyr threw at him in the first half there was no way passed him.

And even when the Tanc 'Pitted' his 'Fury' against him, he had cover in the shape of his defence .

The Swansea Chieftain's effort was goal bound, only to see it headed off the line by their 2, Kavan Cotter.

For the Martyrs Faithful - not so much a 'Welcome Back Cotter'.

At the other end, Hitchin looked dangerous from set pieces with their centre half James Budden (5) most likely to score with his Peter Crouch-like height advantage from corners.

Both Tancs and Jarrad did well to neutralise this aerial threat despite giving away 6 or so inches to the Canary High Flyer.

The first half ended goalless despite Corey Jenkins hitting the Hitchin Post with a close range effort that had even the near Cockney purple monster goalie in a bit of 'Barney Rubble'.

Only a lick of Gordon Awty gloss stopped Corey being translated into Welsh as Scorio.

In the second half, the Tide turned as Hitchin pushed further forward and had the Home side penned back for long periods in their own half but the Merthyr Maginot line held firm and still managed to keep the Canaries caged.

The turning point in the half came, when their Manager Burke, replaced the injured towering figure of Budden (who must hit his head on the Sky once too many times), and the Away side had to regroup allowing Traylor into the game more to support the solitary figure of Fleetwood who up until that point looked fed-up using binoculars to watch his own players from their half of the pitch.

Whilst he did do some lovely pirouettes that Dame Margot Fonteyn would have been proud of, it was hard for even the best player to beat three men permanently around you.

The Management brought on Talisman Kerry Morgan but it was too little, too late.

The game ended in a stalemate but whilst many fans thought it was a boring game, I thought it was a decent contest with two evenly matched sides cancelling each other out .

Hitchin will of course be feeling much happier with their share of the 'settlement' spoils than their Merthyr Counterparts.

I suspect both Clubs will be involved in another play-off decider come Season End.

Let's hope by then that ALL the Merthyr 'Faithful' can with a bit of 'Guidance' and a spot of 'mediation' that instead of an acrimonious divorce at Penydarren Park then a reconciliation is on the Membership Cards.

Reunited is the only way we can beat the Seven Year Hitch is together as One Club.

Boz










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Boz1964

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