Poppy Day in Merthyr

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Poppy Day in Merthyr

Post  Boz1964 on Sat Jan 20, 2018 2:43 pm

Poppy Day

As the song goes, it's a long way to Tipperary but even further from Northamptonshire to Merthyr Tydfil by football coach.

But the arduous journey clearly had little effect on the vocal chords of the Kettering Fans, who turned Webley's Bar into an impromptu venue for Northampton's Got Talent.

Never before have I witnessed football fans singing, whilst waiting in line to be served at our bar.

I have heard of singing for your supper but this was the first time for beer.

I half expected Tom Jones to turn around from his swivel chair at the sound of the
combined 'voice' of the Popp Music.

I also get the impression that they weren't big fans of Corby Town , Rushden n Diamonds or Northampton Town given the nature of their songs.

And if the Away Fans were busy melody making in the bar then it didn't take their table-topping side long to get on tune on the pitch too.

9 minutes in fact before Kettering forward Aaron O'Connor found himself free in the Merthyr penalty area and he slotted home from close range past the helpless Oliver Davies.

Once again, Merthyr Town were up against much bigger and more physical opponents, this time from the flatlands of Eastern England.

League positions at this time in the season are rarely deceptive and with Kettering lying second in the league and Merthyr 18th then few people gave the South Wales outfit any 'opium' against the Poppies.

To add insult to injuries, in recent games Merthyr's disciplinary record further weakened a depleted side as they were missing the suspended Jarrad Wright and the Merthyr Panther -Craig Reddy.

Off the pitch, the Fanbase had mutated into the Red Flag Martyrs, while on the playing side we had become the Red Card ones.

By the time marksman Rene Howe had added the second on 28 minutes, Merthyr's heads had dropped faster than those of the aristocracy in Paris in 1789 ( topical joke for you Ownes).

By the time Matthew Stevens had scored right on cue on 33 minutes, 'la resistance to Rene' was futile.

'I will say zis only once' but he was running our reshuffled defence ragged with the Home Side looking particularly suspect from corners and set pieces- which is understandable given that players have had to be played out of position.

With half-time approaching, there was precious little for the Merthyr support to write home about.

With the exception of one long range effort by Miles John which had Hawaii cellphones on high alert, most of the wayward Merthyr shots ballooned up into the low cloud with the tannoy announcement repeating a message from one Mr Neil Armstrong asking if we wanted our ball back.

With little face left to lose, the Merthyr Management decided to throw caution to the wind and reshuffle the pack Theresa May style.

He took off midfielder Chuck Norris, who had gone missing in action and brought on a recognised striker.

SuperGav must have spotted a weakness in the Kettering ranks in that one of the Away players didn't have a name listed on the team sheet merely described as 'number 6'- which was odd as there was already another number 6.

He also was also either wearing a designer label or an electronic tag.

He was the one that had initial difficulties getting past gate security and kept blasting the ball into ' Block H'.

He was a giant of a man and not have witnessed who had been substituted, I was worried that he had had one of our defenders for breakfast,  as he looked 'Miles' bigger returning to the pitch for the second half.

And things were to get worse for Merthyr before they got better.

Kettering added a fourth through the excellent Brett Solkhon.

At 4-0 the Poppies decided like the Australian cricket team to declare early.

I then had my own sulk-on, until that is onto the pitch came the Holy Beard, who had appeared to have cured the lame via a self help remedy with hamstrings ready for New Testament.

On the hour-mark, Captain Marble once again adopted his body-line tactics- putting his body on the line- and played a fabulous through ball ( despite knowing he would be inevitably clattered by an opponent) to Local Hero Kerry Morgan who got under the Kettering radar and struck a shot passed their keeper into the far corner of the net.

The fans having witnessed the Slough Restoration started to believe in the power of the Prossiah.

If only he could 'roll away the stone'  at the heart of the Kettering defence, then they might just get a prison break or two.

Cracks started to appear in what was a completely solid Kettering defence which had previously had the Merthyr forward line shackled tighter than a Californian Family.

Once more the understanding between Vapour Traylor and the Holy Beard came to the fore and    with the electric pace of Corey Jenkins - the Trinity was restored.

On 86 minutes Traylor added a second and Corey Jenkins cut inside the full back to bring another wonder save from Kettering Keeper White to add to the Gordon Banks impression he did in the first half.

With the temperature dropping faster than Cyril Smith bungee jumping, the referee brought the game to an end with a respectable scoreline of 2-4.

Kettering were now in first position in the Evostik League staying just ahead of our local rivals Hereford.

Whilst the Away side looked comfortable for most of the game, Merthyr had the monopoly on possession and Kettering will feel they have used their 'get out of jail free card' after their keeper made two quality saves which could have resulted in a draw game- albeit it would have been a real injustice.

On the other hand, the quality Rene Howe had struck the bar with a header when Oliver Davies was left more exposed than a Cyfarthfa Park flasher.

In the end, it was a much more improved second half against a side that will definitely make the play-offs come season end.

If not Top of the Pops.

With the restructuring of the leagues next season I doubt that the Poppies will get to visit us again for some time which is a shame as they were a real tonic.

Boz
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Boz1964

Posts : 1967
Join date : 2012-10-08

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