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Saturday, 20 October 2012

Sheffield FC 0-1 Lincoln City


Tonight’s match was a bit of a Brucie bonus. Since City dropped out of the Football League the club resigned from the reserve league to save costs and when they needed to give a few squad players a run out simply arranged a game against local opposition when it suited them.  I first got wind of the game early on Monday morning, I informed my chums and plans were made.  Again only the three of us, as Lee had another cock and bull excuse  a very valid a reason for missing the opportunity of ticking off yet another new ground.
Sometimes for some daft reason, games like this are played behind closed doors.  I for one have never seen the point of doing this. Earlier in the morning a report on the local radio station had said that the match was to be played behind closed doors.  Thankfully due to the power of Facebook I was able to contact Sheffield FC and they told us that the game was NOT to be played behind closed doors and that fans were more than welcome. A first class response that was prompt and very helpful. This was in stark contrast with Lincoln’s promotion of the match as there was no mention of the match on the official website, Twitter account, or Facebook page.  The club’s social media has improved a bit this season but with incidents like this it shows that there is still a way to go.
 The good thing about games like this is that you don’t have to worry about what side we will put out or whether we will win or lose. As I have said before, when it comes to friendlies the result really doesn’t mean anything. Tonight was simply about giving some of the City players who haven’t had much match time recently a game, while also giving a triallist and a few first year pros a run out.  The only real dilemma was that with this game being a 7.00pm ko, whether to have a kebab pre or post game. In the end we elected to dine post match.

Sheffield FC don’t actually play in Sheffield in fact they don’t even play in Yorkshire. They are based in Dronfield; just over the border in Derbyshire. At the helm of the oldest club in the world we find last season’s assistant manager Curtis Woodhouse (which could explain how this match came about) They have had a decent start to their season in the Evo Stick division one south, and currently sit in a playoff position in 4th place with games in hand on the leaders. I didn’t recognise any of the Sheffield players apart from one; striker Vill Powell was a big part of Retford United’s success in the early 2000s and I am pretty sure he scored something daft like 70 odd goals for the club in a short space of time as United won the Central Midlands League treble. I can’t recall the season, 2002/03 maybe?
I must say that I was a little surprised that “Club” had held the gate price of £6 for this match but at least the club had provided a free programme and team sheet for all. Even charging this price I am pretty sure they would have made a loss on the game as only 40 or so souls attended. There were several factors for this; Lincoln’s poor advertisement of the game being one of the biggest, along with the Poland v England international game that was scheduled to be played. We all know about the farce that happened in Warsaw that night, and plenty has been written about it. All I can say is that I am glad we decided to attend the Imps game tonight instead of heading off to the pub to watch the match.
Sheffield’s ground is a rather smart effort and one that befits a club with such a proud history. First port of call was a trip to the food hut for a quick snack to tide us over until we got to the kebab shop later on. I purchased my first portion of pie and peas of the season which came in at £2.50 and was a fine effort. I know that I may sound like a little porky pig having pie and peas and a kebab in the same night but in my defence all I had had to eat that day was a Bombay Bad Boy pot noodle for dinner at work that day so I was a tad on the hungry side. And anyway I needed to try them to tell you lot who haven’t been to Sheffield FC what they are like.  So that’s my defence your honour. 
Most of the names on the City team sheet we recognised but the number 11 was totally unknown to us and I am pretty sure the stadium announcer was hoping that he wouldn’t score.
City were decked out in the 125th  green anniversary shirt, they took control of the game early on and looked to knock the ball around. You could tell that some of the City players were a tad rusty but that was why this game had been arranged. As it was rather cold I didn’t take many notes on the game or “Tweet” much, so it’s a brief match report. The goal that settled it came in the 20th minute when Jake Sheridan fired home from close range. City did have the better of the chances but managed to fluff their lines all too often.
We did have the ball twice in the net in the second half, but both were ruled out for offside (the second one looked a very close call). Sheffield did do better in the second half but keeper Jake Turner in the Lincoln goal was more than up to whatever they could throw at us. Although he didn’t have a huge amount to do, he organised the defence well and came out well to collect the high balls that Sheffield pumped into the box. It’s been a while since City had two decent keepers but it looks like we are now in that position. Elsewhere Nutter looked steady and it was good to see Alan Power continue his comeback having got injured in the Alfreton home match.  It was also good to see Jeff Gouvia get a game because he seems to have disappeared since his appearance at Newark Town in pre season.
As for the triallist; Mr Francis Ugochukwuanyanu? Well it was he who had the two goals disallowed. He looked a large unit up front and looked lively so he is worth another view in my eyes. It would almost be worth signing him to see the name would fit on the back of the shirt. 
On the way out i did bag three extra programmes that were sat on the turnstile on the way out (They are just a single folded piece of paper) But if anybody wants one give me a shout. Don't all rush at once though.

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