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Thursday, 29 April 2010

Onwards to Madrid!!!!!!



AC Millan? Who the fu@k are they i ask?


For the first time since 1972 Internazionale of Milan will take there place in the Champions league final. After beating the European champions Barcelona 3-2 over two legs.
For people who dont know i have been an Inter fan since 1994-95 season and the days of Italian football on channel four.For much of the 90,s Inter were the Liverpool of Italy, great history,spent shitloads of cash but won fuck all. We had to sit by and watch Millan and Juve win titles and champions leagues galore.
Now it is Inter who are the top dogs. Should we win the league this year we will over take AC Milan in the league honors list! That looked a world away in the 90,s.
But its the Champions league we really want and we deserve it and here's why.
We have had to play Barcelona four times.
We went to Chelsea and CSKA and and kept clean sheets.
We played our the first leg at home in all three knockout rounds.
We got through long trips to Russia and Ukraine in the group stages.

We will face Bayern Munich in the final. There coach louis van Gaal Produced the Ajax side of 1995-96 which was one of the best sides i have ever seen play. In fact i think we are about to see Europe's top two coach's go head to head.Both have worked in a number of countries and won in different countries.

May i have your attention please!



Just got a couple of websites that i am sure followers of football will enjoy taking a look at and an exciting sponsorship deal involving "The mind of an Imp blog"

First up is the message board and blog of the Pittsburgh River hounds football team. Its interesting to get peoples views of people overseas about the English game. They have drawn there first to games in the USL league two and play there first home match on Sunday i believe. As is normal in football this blog has a Representative there. Just as a foot note a season ticket there is a bargain at $55 for ten home games. Lincoln have just announced that our season ticket prices are going up. Mine will be £265 up £15 from last season! Dick Turpin is alive and well in Lincolnshire it would seem. On the season ticket front i missed three home games this season. The Imps won all three. Twats

Message board
http://http//z15.invisionfree.com/SteelArmy/index.php
Blog

http://steelarmy.blogspot.com/
Now for something totally different

In the next couple of days i hope to announce the fact that i am sponsoring a Guinea pig form the local Guinea pig rescue center. For £24 quid its a bargain and i can say i am spending my cash on something worthwhile instead of Lincoln city,non league football,beer and takeaways! If you would like to sponsor a pigga then follow this link!!


http://www.cavycorner.org/index.html
Watch this space!

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Guinea Pig Party Manifesto!


Fed up of the General election already? None of the main parties interest you? Well a group of Guinea pigs and their owners felt the same. For too long now pigga's squeaks have been ignored by all the parties,their concerns ignored and brushed aside

Well now things have changed!! It gives me great pleasure to present to you ...

THE GUINEA PIG PARTY MANIFESTO!!!!

1) We will set up an independant body to monitor vegetable prices and make sure supermarkets don't rise the prices of Carrots,Parsley,lettuce,cucumbers and broccoli by more than the rate of inflation per year. Apples, melon and strawberries would also be included in this act.

2) We promise to provide funding to train 10,000 vets per year over the course of the next parliament with 40% of these dedicated to Rodents.

3) We will ofter college funding to train up 25,000 joiners and carpenters so that hutch building skills are no longer in short supply.

4) We will set up the Organisation of Hay Inspectors, to ensure all hay produced by our local farmers is of the best standard possible.

5) We will provide a turf grant to all pigger owners who do not have grassed gardens, so they can grass their backyards; giving their piggers the best environment to roam.

6) Care home will get weekly visits from Piggas in there area to cheer them up.

7) All Schools will get lessons in Guinea pigs handling and training.

In the event of the Guinea pig party not winning an outright majority then we pledge than we will work with any party, Apart from the conseravites due to there center right anti pigga policy's

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Lincoln City 1-0 Bury

WE ARE STAYING UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Well thats that! 8 points clear with only 6 left to play for! It wasnt pretty today and i like most of my fellow Imp fans spent as much time looking at our phones for updates from the Grimsby,Barnet and Cheltenham matchs. With ten minutes to go, We were only 6 clear of Grimsby and one clear of Barnet!
Then Davide Somma got his 8th goal in 12 games and the points were ours!

Grimsby could be relagated without kicking a ball on Tuesday night if Barnet win there game in hand at Accrington Stanley. Both sides are in dire form so i really dont have a clue which way its going to go. If Barnet lose then there next match is... Grmsby away!

As for us, We have a nice trip down to Aldershot town for the Imps last away match of the season.
Today was Lincolns first clean sheet since THE 5TH OF DECEMBER! Although the whole team stuck to there task and dug in against play off chaseing Bury i would like to give young center back David Stephans a mention. He had a great game at center half in what was he,s first ever football league start. He was only told he was playing at 1 o clock!

Friday, 23 April 2010

Retford United 0-2 Boston United

What a better way to spend a Wednesday evening than watching your home town team play the carrot crunching inbreds of Boston United in a cup final at Lincolnshires 2nd best stadium?
Tonight was the Unibond league cup final between the uniteds of Boston and Retford. And the Retford Imps were firmly in the corner of the Badgers of Retford.
On the way there we discussed Inters great win over Barcelona in the Champions league semi final and all agreed that Jose is indeed the best manager in Europe, and a gentleman as well! The man can do no wrong at the minute.
Thanks to my good self we got to the ground in good time. If you ever need how to get to a ground then just ask my good self. I found the ground with no trouble at all. As the sign above center court at Wimbledon says " If you can keep you head while everybody else is losing theres..."
When we got to Ashby Avenue the first shock we found was that there was..... A CUE TO GET IN!!!!




It took about ten minutes to get in, In that time i bought a programme which was poor value for £2. It was ten quid to get in. Boston had about 3/4 of the crowd. Not to worry though. As anybody with any brains knows quality over rides quantity everyday of the week. It Always nice to see Ex Imp players on show and Boston had former Lincoln rejects Mark Camm and Ryan Semple in there line up. Just shows how low they have sunk since leaving Lincolnshires premier side.




Boston look like the are going up this year. Many years ago when they were in the league they had the crapest ground and support in league two. Now they take the piss out of clubs like Retford because of there ground etc etc. One of my favourite Boston memories is in the year that Boston United were relegated Lincoln had more fans at the away match than Boston had home fans there. That to me tells you all you need to know about there "support" or lack of it.



We ambled round and stood on the opposite corner to where we came in.
Retford have had a tough time over the last couple of weeks, before kick off there playoff chances were hanging on a thread and manger Peter Duffield had announced that he was leaving at the end of the season due to problems with players wadges being paid late. Both of the sides had scored a win over each other in the league this season with both sides winning there away fixture.



For most of the first half Retford more than held there own against Boston. It was in fact a decent game with both sides looking to get the ball down on the deck and play. Retford had the best chances but Boston had the better ones.






As the half was drawing to a close we went round to stand behind the goal next to the boardroom. Boston took the lead in stoppage time at the end of the first half. Another Imps reject Spencer Weir-Daley scored a great goal from a tight angle after good work down the Boston left. No sooner had Retford took the kick off the Ref blew for half time.



At half time we chatted about City's up coming match's at home to Bury and Aldershot away. Baz went on the search for fodder in the canteen. I saw one guy who had gone to the trouble of painting his face yellow and black. (Bostons home colours) I could mayby understand it if it was the world cup final but the Unibond league cup final? hmm i know i have done some stupid things in my life but even i wouldn't stoop to that level, but then again Lincoln City are unlikely to be playing in the Unibond league cup final anytime soon so mayby i don't appreciate the magnitude of the competition.
Boston stepped up the tempo in the second half and had Retford on the back foot for most of it. Credit to the Retford fans who never gave up cheering for there side but you felt there was only going to be one winner. Boston had a goal disallowed and it was no surprise that they went 2-0 up. Retford had plenty of shots but Boston blocked everything and there defence was very solid. Retford flashed a couple of crosses across the Boston box but no one was there to tap them home
FT 2-0 :-( We stayed to watch Boston lift the cup and it was nice that both sets of players got a good round of applause. All in all a decent match between a couple of decent sides.



Retfords night got even worse with the news that Kendals win now means they can on longer make the playoffs.

Admission £10
Programme £2 3/10 ok but poor value for money
Match quality 7/10

Baz gave the burger a 7 out of 10 but gave the onions on it a 9. chips were average i am told.

I went to watch Lincoln united on the Saturday before. I didn't blog it as i didn't take my camera but i can recommend the fish and chips at the nearby lakeside fish bar. £3.35 for fish and chips but for an extra 10p you get them in a plastic box.

On the way back we discussed the up coming election and the lack of a party to fight for Guinea pigs needs. So watch this space....

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Oldest Ground in the World.

Hallem u19 2-0 Worksop u19

As this was a low key fixture i thought i would just take a few pics of the Ground and not write the normal crap. This is the oldest football ground in the world first playing host to football in 1860. Hallam is on the outskirts of Sheffield and is well worth a visit. The club has plans up in the clubhouse showing a new changing room and match viewing area. A museum is also planned.
If you do go to watch Hallam then done be a prat like me and wrap up warm because it gets cold up there!

The entrance is made of stone and looks like something from a scene in last of the summer wine. The fee tonight was £2 a bargin. Programmes were free.



The two pictures below were taken in the clubhouse. The beer was reasonable priced and tasted ok. The walls are covered in club memorabilia not only from Hallam fc but also items from both Sheffield United and Sheffield Wednesday.





The ground is three sided. As you enter the ground the seated stand is next to the clubhouse and is a decent stand for this level of football. The only other part of the ground that is covered is part of the end behind the goal on you right as you enter the ground.





The pitch slopes away from you as you walk in but it isn't as bad as it once was. Still i would rather kick down the hill than up it. Although in this game Hallam played some neat football going up hill.





The ground is three sides due to the fact the the open side backs on to the cricket pitch. I couldn't get a decent picture of that side due to the sun being in the wrong place.





View looking down from semi covered end of the ground.





Hope you liked the pictures, there really wasn't much else to report on the match and i didn't have any food to review as i had already eaten. I like the fact that for all the thousands of football grounds in the world a club playing in the 9th tier of English football can lay claim to the oldest pitch in the world where football has been played continuously. Lets all raise a glass to Hallam fc! One of the very few spots in Yorkshire worth seeing!

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Steeler nation

Ok so its the last few moments of the 2009 Superbowl The Steelers are trailing late in the game. QB Ben Roethlisberger throws deep to Santiono Homles and the Steelers had a record breaking SIXTH Superbowl championship. Now one of them is gone and one is well and truly in the doghouse.

Lets deal with Holmes first.

OK i Will admit that i was pissed off when this story came through. Basically we trading him for a 5th round draft pick. So that's Superbowl MVP to being swapped for a 5th round pick in under two years. The reason seems to be disciplinary and something to do with smoking pot. plus he had a couple of incidents in his past that didn't sit to well with the Rooneys. (The Steelers owners and not Sherik and his missus)Holmes is due to sit out a four game suspension at the start of next season.

From reading information from various sources the owners decided that we had to get rid of Holmes and ordered the front office to ring round the 28 other sides (but not the other three AFC North sides) and see what trade offers we could get. The best offer was a 5th round draft pick from the Jets so we took it.

My view on this is simple. I feel that we are weekend by it. OK Mike Wallace can step in and do a decent job but that leaves us with no quality back up. And why give a side who we will be playing against this season one of the best wide receivers in the league? OK he will miss the first four match's but even with missing thoses games i feel we would get more out of Holmes for 12 games than we will get out of a 5th round draft pick. We already had ten picks before all this is another one going to help us much?
Fate tends to raise it head alot in sport. Whats the odds that we meet the Jets in the playoffs and Holmes scores the points that knocks us out? Its ok taking a moral stance but the Steelers exists to win Divisional,conferences and Superbowl championships. Shouldn't we be encouraging parents,teachers and politicians to be role models before football players?

Now to "Big Ben"



Basically Ben has had a couple of sexual assault chargers hanging over him for a while. I am delighted to say though that the police have decided there is no evidence to press charges. So you would have thought that would be the end of the matter wouldn't you? Maybe just give the case the last 5 Min's on an episode of Judge Judy and have done with it? Oh no my friends the fun only starts here.

I can imagine the opening line would go like this..

"So then Miss why did you decide to press false charges against multi millionaire and international sports star Mr Roethisberger?

So even though he is an innocent man either the Steelers or the NLF are going to suspend him. 2-4 games seems to be the total talked about in the media. Personally i would like the see the owners stand by Ben a hell of alot more than they are doing. Superbowl winning QB,s are hard to find and how many have two winners rings like Ben has? One of our back up QB,S has thrown two passes since 2007 and the other may well be a good QB in years to come but has lost his only game he started last year against an average and limited Ravens side.
In my opion it time to unite and put all this behind us move on,stop taking the moral high ground and get back investing in the side so we can be in a position to win football matchs come September.
I watched the owners press conference and although he answered all the questions as best he could i felt it should have been done days ago. I mean the cat is already out the bag and half way up the high street.

Just on final point a picked up on from the conference.

Quote " we have the highest level of expectations ON and off the field"

OK than so why didn't you make a big song and dance last season when we lost 5 in a row and got stuffed by the likes of the Clowns, Cheifs and Raiders?

I know i am quite liberal, laid back etc etc but carnt we just forget all this and concertrate on the Football?

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Berwick Rangers 2-2 East Stirlingshire

Something a bit different this weekend, a boys trip to the English/Scottish Border to sample the standard of the Scottish 3rd division.
It was an early start for myself. I got my arse out of bed at 5.30 am so i had time to cook myself some Lincolnshire sausage sandwiches(what else could they be?) and pack my bag. Getting up was quite easy due to the fact i had a Friday afternoon session on the ale and was asleep by 8.00pm. Yep that's what drinking in the afternoon with a couple of shady Scotsmen does to you. I picked up a kebab on the way back but as i can't remember eating it i am unable to review it for you but all that was left in the morning was a few bits of salad so it can't have been that bad.



I was picked up and bundled into a car at the cash point and we made our merry way up to the train station for the 7.50 train up to Berwick. As i normally do i added a touch of class to the party by picking up the independent newspaper for the journey. I enjoyed the paper and, until i moved out, used to buy it everyday but £1 a day is a tad on the steep side so i stick to the Daily Mirror.
Berwick is famous for two things. Firstly they are the only side in England playing in the Scottish league (the town is right on the border from what i can make out) and secondly their 1967 Scottish cup win over the mighty Glasgow Rangers. The town is quite scenic and is popular with walkers and cyclists, and now four football fans from Retford with little better to do. The normal banter was exchanged on the train, everything from football, politics, work and the arses on the girls in the hen party that got on at Newcastle were discussed and debated with great diligence. We arrived at about 10.30 and set off looking for our lodgings; a backpackers place in the centre of town, and after a few wrong turns we found it.



The place was nice enough, although a couple of us managed to fall up the stairs which to say we hadn't had a drink yet was a tad worrying and didn't bode well for later. The nice Canadian lady gave us the run down on the rules of the house and told us what was going off in Berwick which wasn't alot by the sounds of it. Some more good news was received when we found that the toilet wasnt to far from the room at all. Although this did mean that the expected smells from the bogosphere had a high chance of reaching the room.
The plan was to have a few beers then head over to the Ground. Though Berwick is in England it is very much a Scottish Town, but the town does seem to pride itself on its dual nationality. We found a nice little pub and sat outside in the sunshine drinking very nice if slightly expensive tennants lager. One of our party had been given some material from one of the more dubious political parties seeking votes in the upcoming election so we had a quick flick through those before setting off for the ground.
Over the bridge that splits the town we found a fish and chip shop and thought it would be rude not to try a Scottish "fish supper" and it didn't disappoint. The fish was cooked fresh and the chips plentiful, as it was served up in a cardboard box. It took a while to arrive and even at £4.60, it was worth it, even if the wait did test one of our number's bladder strength to the limit. And for once it wasnt mine!



Berwicks sheffield park is set in a residential area of the town and and is about 10-15 minutes walk from the town centre but when you are bursting for a piss it seems alot further



We got to the stadium at about 1.45 and had a quick look around the ground. A few East Stirlingshire players were arriving by car and there seemed to be more away fans milling around than home fans. We took a few more pictures and headed for Berwick's social club "The black and gold"



I was bit disappointed with the clubhouse; It was quite modern and felt more like a bar in a town centre than a football clubhouse. I must admit i prefer the old fashion style of clubhouse with pennants and memorabilia on the walls both of which were missing here. I would have thought the club would have picture after picture from that famous cup win over Rangers alas there was nothing. Speaking of cup upsets the main talking point in the bar wasn't the upcoming match but the news that first division Ross County had dumped Celtic out of the Scottish cup in the semi finals 2-0. To think Celtic got Robbie Keane in January to help them win the cup to salvage something from this season. Oh and they are paying him £65,000 a week.



There was an old fashioned style juke box in the club. However most of the tunes being played were way before my time, my traveling chums seemed to remember them all though. We got chatting to a Berwick fan who asked what a group of Lincoln city fans were doing up in Berwick. He told us how you see more people on Berwick station heading south wearing Newcastle kits off to watch the toon, than you get going to Berwick matches and how it fucks him off, which is something every lower league fan can sympathise with. Speaking of Newcastle can anybody tell me why do they bang on about being a big club and their huge fan base when they haven't had more than a couple of sell outs this season? big club? never my friends.



So after guzzling more tennants we headed into the ground. It was £10 to get in and a couple of quid for the programme. As i was feeling in a good mood i even bought a 50/50 ticket for 50p. The club shop is positioned just inside the turnstile and had all the normal stuff on sale.



The metal badge was a bargin at £2 and featured both an English and Scottish lion on it. There was a good range of programmes for different clubs on sale as well, including alot of English non league clubs. Worksop Town being one of them.


The ground consists of a seated covered stand down one side and a smaller covered stand on the other side of the pitch which is flanked by uncovered terracing on either side. Berwick share the stadium with the local speedway team so you are a little further from the pitch than at some other clubs. You can walk around 3 sides of the ground with the bottom end being closed off. The first thing you notice is the slope in the pitch, but it looked in decent condition if a little heavy.



We ambled over to the far side and stood on the covered terrace to watch the first half. East Stirlingshire had a good away following of maybe 40-50 fans and were very vocal. They were soon cheering as their side took the lead after 5 or so minutes.


Berwick were very poor in the first half. After going 1-0 down they showed no urgency to get back into the game and the away side who were kicking down the slope in the first half totally ran the show. The home side struggled to put more than two passes together and produced as poor a show as i have seen this season, and with the amount of Lincoln games i have seen, that is some claim. The "Shire" went 2 up with a cheeky chip from the edge of the box and it looked as if they would run away with the match as Berwick went from bad to worse.


To say the home fans were unimpressed was an understatment. Here are a few comments that stood out:

"Pish Berwick totally fu##ing pish"
"come on Berwick fu##ing try ya c##ts"
"fucking awesome Berwick" said as another move broke down.
"can i have my ten pounds back this is shite!!
" Well done Berwick you have made the c##t work today fantastic! said as the Shire keeper picked up a shot than ran along the ground from about 20 yards at the pace that an average Guinea pig walks.
Shire continued to waste chances and Berwick continued to be poor.
HT 0-2
Berwick put in a much stronger performance in the second half. Their first goal came down the left when the winger cut in and just when it looked that he had let the ball get too far infront of him, he managed to poke it beyond the advancing keeper. Berwick made it 2-2 with about 15 mins to go from the penalty spot and from then on it was end to end stuff. The shire still played the better football but Berwick made the better chances. At the end it felt to me as The shire had thrown 2 points away after there great first half showing.




Elsewhere the mighty Imps had beaten 3rd placed Bournmouth 2-1 at home. I had missed three home matches this season and the Imps have won all three hmm.



Post game we didnt do much. We had a stroll around the town, had a couple of drinks, and a meal at one of the towns few restaurants. Here i saw a sight i thought i would never see; Baz didnt eat all his Pizza! The food was filling and cheap, although i was disappointed that there were no Penguin ice creams left.



So after a rock and roll night of watching Match of the day and the football league show we hit the sack. The journey back flew by due to the fact i bought VIZ and it was enjoyed by all. Its still a bargin at £3.40! Well i think it is anyway.


I would like to say that it was another top draw weekend away and i would like to thank Baz for sorting it out. Take a bow good sir.

Addmission £10
Programme £2 3/10 nice to look at but not a great deal to read poor value for 2 quid
Clubhouse 5/10
Ground 6/10
Fish and chips 8/10
Match quality 7/10

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Advert!

Is there a better advert on TV at the moment than this one? I doubt it my friends i doubt it very much so!

Baseball Starts


I have always had a soft spot for Baseball. Back in the days when i worked alot of afters shifts i would watch a hour or so of it on channel 5 after work. (via the pub it has to be said.)

Pittsburgh's baseball side may not be the strongest but i am used to following crap sides (Lincoln for example) but i will be following them closely and keeping you up to date with how they are getting on. They play an awful lot of games, 162 to be precise so there is plenty to keep up with. Last season to be blunt they were crap, finishing bottom of their division with "only" 60 wins. So its safe to say that not alot is expected from the Pittsburgh Pirates this season. I have predicted that they will get 70 wins, my contact in the States say both her and her best friend think they will get 40 wins. The target must be firstly though to get off the bottom of the division. Onwards and upwards as they say.


First match was last night against the LA Dodgers and resulted in a 11-5 win for Pittsburgh. They take on the same side tomorrow and Friday night so we will see if it was a flash in the pan or the real thing.
Oh and i need to say this because it wont last long, as i write this the Pirates have a better record than the Yankees! Can't see that still being the case by the end of the week, but there you go! Another thing you can get an "all you can eat" seat at the Pirates for $17! If thats not good value for money then i dont know what is!

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Retford United 6-1 Durham City

First part of this Easters football viewing was a trip up to Cannon Park to watch playoff chasing Retford United take on rock bottom Durham City in the Unibond premier division.



Retford have stuttered a little over the last few months but are still well placed to make the playoffs. They have made great progress in cup competitions though and will take on Boston United in the unibond league cup final at Lincoln United's Ashby Avenue ground on the 21st of April. The Badgers also booked their place in the Nottinghamshire senior cup final on Tuesday night by beating Dunkirk 4-0 at home. The final is played at Notts county's meadow lane and will be against either Forest Town or Eastwood Town, who meet on April the 13th.



To say Durham city have had a rough ride this year is an understatement. A major sponsor pulled out on the eve of the season and all the players had to be released. In their place the club signed up a lot of 18/19 year olds from the local university. The result is that all but two games have been lost and some by huge margins (10-0 by Boston United for example) Great credit must go the the club for carrying on when many clubs would just have folded. Their goal difference going into this game was -124. A final kick in the teeth was when the league took the 6 points off them that they'd won due to fielding an ineligible player.


New covering behind the goal

Off the field Retford have passed the required ground grading to gain promotion. It was touch and go but they now have the green light which is great news for the club and the town. Many drinks were raised to the man who had a big hand in getting a hell of a lot of the work done in the weatherspoons pub before the match (Chelsea Bastard ;-) ) although as he said he had nothing to do with the covering behind the goal. I was too late down to the pub to have a breakfast with the guys but i had a very nice one in the works canteen and was still in the pub for 12.30pm drinking high quality Czech Kozel larger at £2.35 per bottle (not 80p) if you haven't tried this then you haven't lived!! More pubs need to stock this!

We got up to the ground and i followed a Worksop Town fan in who was doing his third Retford United match on the trot. After picking up the Programme the first stop as ever was the bar and a pint of lager. I can't remember what it was but it cost £2.60. We left the bar just as the teams were kicking off.
The weather was abit crap so after a quick stroll round to get some pics i parked my fat arse in the new seated section of the stand to watch the match.




Its a grim job- Durham City's match reporters look on



Nice ditch


The first half was quite one sided with Retford hardly breaking sweat and storming into a 4 goal lead. The pick of the goals being Paul Ellenender's long range effort that found the bottom corner a minute or so before half time. The bar was again visited and due to being late out of it i missed Durham City's goal!



Due to the crap weather i stood behind the new covering behind the goal for the second half which was as one sided as the first. Durham never gave up though and battled on till the end. The crowd exchanged good natured banter with the Durham keeper as the match went on. Retford added two further goals but it could have been more. After the match we went back to the bar, left at about 6.45 then it was back into town for more beer, surprise surprise! I watched the first half of Tranmere v Norwich, then went for a kebab and zonked out at home.

A good time was had by all and as you can see from the picture below it was smiles all round!


Yep theres always some twat with a camera about!!


Admission £8
Programme £2
Man of the match Chelsea Rob