Sheppey United -v- Hastings United (FA Cup Preliminary Round)
So the magic of the FA cup brought Hastings to the Embalming stadium, backed by a near 400 crowd including a fair few from Hastings, some looking like they’d actually fought in the original Battle of Hastings gave the day a nice spicy atmosphere.
With Luke Harvey Oswald unavailable it seemed logical that Remmell would just fit in up front in a 4-3-3, unfortunately it wasn’t that logical as Remmell missed his lift so we started with a 4-4-2 with the return of the colonel, Kwasi (I’ve got a hunch he’s going to do well for us) replacing man of the match Jim Huggins and Timmy back on the left.
The game started as a cagey affair, Hastings having the majority of the ball, they started carving a few half chances, the first of which saw or own playboy Ralphy pull off the biggest tackle I’ve seen since I found that old video under my mums bed to snuff out the threat, not to be outdone, the colonel then repeats the feat not once but twice which woke the Paddock up with cries of “You’ll never beat the Colonel” which not for the first time proved true.
At the other end Sheppey were trying to fashion their own chances, the Shrewsbury shifter chasing and harrying like a Jehovah’s witness, linking up well with Girty and the Pantomime villains pressing the midfield, it all looked promising, in fact Furious George was pressing the midfield that much the Ref showed his admiration by asking for Georges name after one such event.
Half time, honours even, the general consensus in the bar was that Hastings had been marginally better but both keepers were more unemployed than Stevie Wonders telescope.
Ernie must have rustled his paper a bit loudly in the dressing room as the boys came out with more urgency, captain Batten driving the Ites on, and then came the ” Kennedy moment” Timmy found himself one on one with the centre half, his first touch was that bad it surprised the centre half who attempted to clear it but only succeeded in hitting it straight against Timmy who then reached the ball before the keeper giving him 3 choices
- A) Side foot it into the corner, giving the keeper no chance
- B) Round the keeper, making him look stupid and walk it into an empty net or
- C) None of the above
Well as you can guess Timmy chose C, the hero from the first round suddenly came back to earth quicker than Susan Boyle on a bungee rope was this our last chance gone ?
The wise old owls in the paddock were speculating that it would take something pretty special to win this game so as not to disappoint up popped their no.17 David Sonny who hit a peach of a shot that caught the wind and flew in the top corner of the net at the D.S.S stand end, a goal worthy enough to win any game to put Sonny’s side up.
To say the players looked gutted would be an understatement, the goal, against the run of play knocked the stuffing out of them but there’s a saying in football that you’re the most vulnerable straight after you have scored, this was proven to be absolute tripe as a few minutes after the first beauty up popped another one in the shape of no.10 Billy Medlock, who beat one, turned on his right and curled it round the keeper from 25 yards, 0-2.
Back came Sheppey on came Mahoney for Lyons, who had been quiet in the mane, the tireless Northerner not letting Hastings rest on their laurels disposing the left back, cut across the box with the shout of ” shoot” from the massed ranks of the great unwashed in the Botany end unselfishly squared the ball to Timmy who unselfishly blasted it so far over the bar the ball came down with snow on it. We’d run our race and the rest of the game was played out comfortably enough for Hastings.
We played well, especially defensively, Girty is improving every week and aside the two great goals we looked comfortable against a team from a higher league with a bigger budget. If Timmy had brought his shooting boots we could be in the next round. To quote Ernie, after the game if we’d have won 2-1 they couldn’t have had any arguments.
So I’ve cancelled my holiday for May 19th (Sheppey had more chance of getting there than West Ham) and we can now concentrate on the league, local derby against Chatham next week just the game we need to get back to winning ways.
M.O.M Ralphy or the Colonel, there won’t be many better centre half pairings in this league.
I’d just like to wish Man of the match James Huggins all the best wherever he ends up, a great lad who will be sorely missed by the club and fans, hopefully we’ll see you back here soon