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Monday, 25 March 2013

Lincoln Ladies v Leeds United Ladies preview

FA Cup quarter final.





 Please remember that this game kicks off at 12.00pm!!!

Lincoln's reward for beating Chelsea 1-0 in the previous round is a home tie against National premier division side Leeds United Ladies. Although we haven't played Leeds for quite a while there are plenty of connections between the two clubs. Lady Imps' manager Rick Passmoor spent many years at Leeds as manager, and Lincoln players Sophie Walton, Carla Cantrell, Jess Clarke, and Remi Allen all played under Rick at Leeds in the years before the FAWSL was created. With all these connections between the clubs its hardly surprising that the official Leeds United Ladies twitter feed described the tie as "Old Leeds v New Leeds". To help me with this weeks preview, i am joined by special guest and long time Leeds United Ladies fan Leanne Brown, to give us a bit more of an insight into the side that Lincoln will be facing this weekend. Leanne has been following the women's game for many years and has a fantastic inside into the game. If you would like to follow her on Twitter then here is her twitter handle @Bantam75

Tale of the form.

Lincoln's game last week away at Bristol was called off early due to the terrible weather. As was Leeds' League Cup semi final away at Sunderland. In all competitions however they are on a 12 match unbeaten run with their last defeat being a 3-0 defeat away at Manchester City on November the 11th. At present they sit in third place in the FA Premier league with 22 points collected from the 11 matches, and they trail league leaders Sunderland by eight points but do however have a game in hand. In the league this season they have won 7, drawn 1, and lost 3, and have a goal difference of +8.





Leeds United Ladies in the FA Cup this season.

Round 3 Leeds United Ladies 3-2 West Ham United Ladies
Round 4 Watford Ladies 0-2 Leeds United Ladies
Round 5 Leeds United Ladies 4-0 Yeovil Town Ladies

Leeds United Ladies last six games in all competitions.

Leeds United Ladies 4-0 Yeovil Town Ladies   FA Cup
Leeds City Vixens 0-4 Leeds United Ladies  WRCC Semi final*
Leeds United Ladies 2-0 Charlton Althetic Ladies Premier League
Watford Ladies 0-2 Leeds United Ladies  FA Cup
Leeds United Ladies 1-1 Sunderland Ladies Premier League
Leeds United Ladies 3-2 Charlton Athletic Women Premier league cup

*WRCC stand for West riding county cup. I am not sure we can read too much into this piece of form however. Leeds have recorded two 18-0 wins so far in the competition against Ossett Albion Ladies and Amaranth Ladies respectively, with Wakefield Ladies faring slightly better in round three only losing 16-0. 


Anyway that's the stats and facts out of the way. Lets get Leanne's views on the club and find out a little more about the players of Leeds United Ladies.

1)    Could you please give us a quick rundown on how Leeds United Ladies’ season has gone so far in the National Premier division?
Very well they are in the mix of teams at the top of the league.  Out of the 3 games they have lost 2 were early in the season and they've had a 12 game unbeaten run which is fantastic


2) Lincoln manger Rick Passmoor is very well known to Leeds fans. What were your highlights of his time in charge of Leeds United Ladies?
 The league cup final in 2010 it was an amazing night at Rochdale and a brilliant performance

3) Leeds has a great record of developing talent; with the likes of Ellen White and Jess Clarke going on to become full England internationals. Are there any youngsters coming through who could follow in their footsteps?
  Jules Draycott, Bekki Bass and Carey Huegett

4)    Who are the danger players for Leeds that Lincoln fans should watch out for today?
Carey Huegett always an eye for goal and Clare Sykes the hard working midfielder


5)    Lincoln have a few former Leeds players in their squad. Which one are you most looking forward to seeing in action again today?
 Sophie Walton always works hard and is good for football

6)    Leeds have made a bid to join the FAWSL in 2014. Have the club done a good job of getting the message out to the local community about this? And has there been a lot of support for the bid?
The club have a done a good job and the local paper has featured their big for the FAWSL and there is plenty of support

7)    Finally could we please have a score prediction from you for today’s game?
          1-2 with Leeds winning


My views on the game.

On paper you would fancy a side in a higher division to beat a side from a lower division at home. However this is a very different ball game. As we have seen, Leeds are having a good season and scoring quite a few goals. They are battle hardened and have been together playing competitive games since August where as Lincoln have only one game under their belts. In many ways i think this will be a harder game than the Chelsea game in the previous round. In that case it was the first game of the season for two sides that were still bedding in. Leeds will be seen as the underdogs but will want to prove a point. As we have heard they have submitted a bid to join the FAWSL next season and what better way to prove their worth than dumping out a current WSL side out of the FA Cup on their own ground? There are no replays in the women's FA cup which i think encourages attacking play so its set up for a fantastic clash. It will be a hard game and an entertaining one. I will go for a tight 3-2 win for Lincoln.

Seeing how it is Easter i thought we had to have a cute Easter picture in here somewhere.



Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Lincoln Ladies 1-0 Chelsea Ladies

A cracking programme. I really like the fans view page ;-)

 The first day of the season is always special and one of the most exciting times of the season, and for the Lady Imps it felt like a new dawn.  A new home stadium, new kit, and a new manager at the helm. Throw into the pot the first game of the season being an FA Cup tie against old rivals Chelsea, and it had all the ingredients of a fantastic curtain raiser to the season. However the weather thought it would try and throw a spanner in the works. Thankfully though it was thrown back in its face and we got a fantastic event to start the season (well it was if you are a Lincoln fan of course)

I must admit that as i  tucked into some pre game beers in various pubs on the high street (another plus to moving stadiums), I wasn't totally confident that the game would go ahead. Several Women's FA cup games had already been called off and as the weather changed from drizzle to rain to sleet to snow and back again, i did have the horrible feeling that ours would go the same way. To make matters worse my Internet had gone down so without access to twitter i had no idea if an inspection was called. So at 1.15pm i braved the snow (as it was at that point) and headed down to the Bank. Upon arrival i joined the small ground of Lady Imps fans huddled in the shelter outside the ground near the ticket office. Thankfully after about ten minutes or so the gates opened as the game got the go ahead. Although it wasn't particularly fun being out in the cold and rain i don't think there was much the club could have done. Had they let the fans in the game and then it had been called off, we could have had an awkward situation on our hands with people wanting refunds and moaning as to why they were let in in the first place etc. So the club really was in a no win situation on that one. On the plus side though it was nice to meet a couple of fans i have only chatted to on twitter/facebook land so it was nice to put names to faces.

After entering the ground and collecting the programme (£2.50 with a free copy of "She kicks" magazine thrown in)  you could see that the groundstaff must have worked their socks off to get the game on. The drainage at Sincil Bank is quite good but there were one or two areas where standing water was starting to gather.  Never the less, both sides were going through their warm ups and it soon became apparent that this was going to be a real battle and very physically demanding. Summer football eh? You just can't beat it can you. It must have been a bit of a shock to the system to the players who returned from sunny Cyprus this week. And while i am on the subject of that i must take this opportunity to belatedly congratulate England on their 1-0 win over a good Canada side in the final of the Cyprus cup.

Lincoln have a slightly smaller squad than last season and on top of this we had Sophie Walton suspended plus Meaghan Sargeant and Sophie Barker injured, which meant that we were only able to field 3 subs to Chelseas 5. For Lincoln, new signing Karen Bardsley lined up in goal behind a back four containing the tried and tested pairing of Casey Stoney and Sophie Bradley as the two centre backs, with Bonnie Horwood and Martha Harris as the full backs. Across the middle we had Jess Clarke on the right with Emily Roberts on the left. Megan Harris and Remi Allen were once again paired together as the engine room in the Lincoln midfield. Up front we had Carla Cantrell and last year's top scorer Precious Hamilton. Obviously Chelsea are a lot less familiar to me but i was surprised to see Nicki Davis in goal ahead of Carly Telford.

The early exchanges gave us a sign of things to come. As playing passing football on the ground was going to be difficult, it certainly wasn't a day to be passing the ball around your own penalty area. It was also well worth chasing down lost causes as the ball just went dead if it landed in one of the puddles forming on the pitch.  After a free kick from Chelsea that would have looked more at home at Twickenham, Lincoln had the first real chance when Precious got on the end of a long goal kick but Davis pulled off a smart save. In conditions like this it is always worth a long range shot as keepers would rather punch than try and grab a slippy ball and it was from such an effort that Lincoln almost took the lead. Cantrell blasted in a 30 yard effort that Davis pushed out to Jess Clarke but she had just strayed offside. Chelsea hadn't really threatened but they did come more into it in just before halftime. A clever through ball looked like it had caught the centre back pairing out but full back Martha Harris got back quickly to snuff out the danger from Eniola Aluko.

 That was the last real action of the first half and both teams trudged off to the warmth of the changing rooms. Lincoln were wearing the brand new home shirt which is mostly white however most of the shirts werent really very white at halftime as they were caked in mud. Although strangely enough Karen Bardsley's kit was still a shiny green colour which tells you how hard the Lincoln defence had worked. Smart as the new home strip is i had decided to bag one of the away shirts, which are a rather fetching pink colour. Well it had to be done didn't it?

No changes for either side in the second half but a change in momentum as Lincoln attacked from the off. Carla once again was in the thick of the action as she had a neat effort deflected just wide which gave the Imps a corner. One thing of note in the first half was Sophie Bradley going up for corners and set plays, which is something that we didn't see much of last year; and it was Sophie who got the assist for the goal. The corner was launched to the back post and fell to Bradley who drove it back across the goal when it got a deflection and looped up into the air. Jess Clarke reacted quickest to head the ball past Davis. 1-0 to Lincoln after 57 minutes. I was very happy to see Jess grab the goal as she failed to score last year and had a tough time with injury, But her performance today and with England in Cyprus shows that she is back with a bang this time around.

Shortly after the goal however Lincoln were on the end of another bang, when Remi Allen was unfortunately on the end of a boot to the face courtesy of Chelsea's Danielle Buet. Now i do not think for a moment that she meant it, but i was still very surprised that no card of either colour was shown. Yes the ref has to take the conditions into account, but does a wet pitch affect high kicking? In my humble view it was worse than the Nani incident in the recent Champions League match against Real Madrid. Food for thought as they say. Remi was off the pitch for quite a while in which time Chelsea took the game to Lincoln but the Imps held their shape well. The medical team patched Remi up and back on she went (looking at twitter it looks like she suffered a broken nose).
Chelsea did have a flurry of corners but Karen commanded her area fantastically, punching the ball clear on several occasions, on the one occasion when she misjudged the flight of the ball Bonnie Horwood was there to head clear. She was also called into action when a long range effort bounced just in front of her but she smothered the shot well. At the other end the Lady Imps almost doubled the lead when Cantrell spotted Davies off her line but the keeper just scrambled back to tip the 40 yard chip over the bar. And then shortly after then she had another great effort when she struck the cross bar from 30 yards out with Davis grasping at thin air. The ball fell to Amy Kay who was on as a substitute for Precious Hamilton and she slotted home however she had strayed offside.

Lincoln almost paid for that moments later when Chelsea quickly broke out and took the ball straight up the other end of the field, but Bardsley saved the day with a smart save from Aluko. Lincoln managed to run down the clock and booked their place in the quarter finals.

Today was one of those days that everybody had to roll their sleeves up and dig in, and that's exactly what each and every player did. Martha Harris at full back was outstanding in my view and thoroughly deserved her Player of the match award. Pushing her hard for it in my opinion would have been Bonnie Horwood and Carla Cantrell who was a real handful for the Chelsea defence all afternoon, but in truth nobody had a bad game for Lincoln today.

The pitch and the weather weren't the best, but a good side learns to play the conditions they are faced with. It's the same for both sides and whoever adapts first knuckles down, and accepts that its going to be tough going, normally wins these types of games in my experience. The Imps did look to pass the ball on the deck when and where they could so it would be wrong to think we just hit it long all game. I was really impressed with how we held our shape when Remi was off the field receiving treatment and how hard we worked to close the space down.
Off the field i was quite impressed with the crowd of over 370. If you had looked out the window at anytime in Lincolnshire on Sunday the last thing you would have wanted to do was venture outside to watch a game of football, so to get this number through the turnstile was very encouraging.
A queue... At Sincil Bank! Well i never!
The draw for the next round was made the next day and as i am sure you all know by now it paired Lincoln Ladies with Rick Passmoor's (and quite a few of our players') former club Leeds United Ladies from the National Premier division at home. You just couldn't write this stuff could you?

Just to end on. There are still a few seats left on the bus for next weeks trip to Bristol. Email Tom at  t.johnstone@ntlworld.com for details. £15 departure time is 12 noon at Birchwood leisure complex.

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Lincoln Ladies v Chelsea Ladies preview.



Hello one and all and welcome to the first fans preview of the 2013 FAWSL season. For each fixture this season i intend to preview the game and give my thoughts on what may happen. I also intend to get a guest to help me preview each match. This will either be a fan of the opposition or somebody who is neutral but has a vast knowledge on the Women's game. I already have a handful of guests lined up, but if you are a fan of any FAWSL side or just a fan of the Women's game in general, and would like to appear in my previews, just leave a comment below or just Tweet me at @Ferretimp. If you are a fellow writer then i will of course post a link to your website, Twitter handle etc in the article. Anyway now that the introduction is out of the way lets get down to the preview. I would like to welcome and thank this weeks guest Lisa Paterson-Sleep who is a huge fan Women's football at all levels in this country and a prominent member of "The Gang"; The England Ladies supporters group who follow the national team both home and abroad.

Last season in the FA cup.

As this is an FA Cup game i thought we would have a look back at how the two sides fared last season, and they had very different journeys. Lincoln gave Arsenal very good game at Lincoln but lost out 0-1. Chelsea however fared much better. In round 5 Brighton were beaten 3-0 and this was followed up with a 2-0 away win at Doncaster in the quarter finals. On to the semi's and Chelsea notched up a fantastic 2-0 over Lincoln's conquerors Arsenal at neutral Brentford. Chelsea faced Birmingham in the final at Bristol City's Ashton Gate, and took the lead twice in the 120 minutes. They took the lead on 70 minutes and looked like they would hold out. However they conceded a 91st minute equaliser which sent the game into extra time. Again Chelsea took the lead but again Birmingham pegged them back. So with the game locked at 2-2 the game went to penalties and it was heart break for Chelsea as Birmingham took the shootout 3-2.

Tale of the form.

This being the first game of the season i don't have any form to review or debate so we will take a look back at last seasons games. The two sides squared off three times last season (once in the Conentinal cup and the two League games) and Lincoln managed to do the treble over the Blues. In the final standings Lincoln finished in 5th postion on 18 points with Chelsea a place back on 17 points.

18-3-12   Chelsea 0-1 Lincoln 
23-6-12   Lincoln 2-0 Chelsea
7-10-12   Chelsea 2-3 Lincoln.  

Highlights of the Lady Imps 3-2 win at Chelsea on the final day of  the 2013 season.

One interesting stat from last season's games between the clubs, is the fact that Lincoln faced three Chelsea managers. Matt Beard took charge of the first game. Caretaker gaffer Aiden Boxall was in charge for to 2-0 defeat at Lincoln. Current manager Emma Hayes was in the hot seat for the final game of the season at Chelsea. There has been a slight change in the Chelsea dugout with former Doncaster coach Paul Green steeping up to the assistant managers role replacing Daryl Willard who has joined AZAL PFK in Azerbaijan as technical director. Anyway that's pretty much what i know on Chelsea so without further ado lets hand over to Lisa to get the low down on the Blues.

1) Chelsea look like they have been quite busy in the transfer market over the winter. Who do you feel has been the standout signing for the Blues?

They have made some great signings, adding to an already strong team. I’m really looking forward to watching Sofia Jakobsson & Edda Gardarsdottir, but for me the standout signing is Eni Aluko. She's a tricky player and has proved that she has superb goal-scoring skills and can keep any defender on their toes.

2) The club came so close to winning the FA Cup last season How did that loss affect the team last year, and do you think that experiance has made them even more determined to land a trophy this season?
Just beating Arsenal to get to the final showed how much determination the team had to go out and win silverware. They were really unlucky not to win the final, as it could have so easily gone either way. If nothing else it certainly gave them the belief that anything is possible. There have been so many changes in Chelsea, both in players & management that it feels more like a fresh start this season, who knows how far they'll get this year!

3) Manager Emma Hayes got the job towards the end of 2012 and the side seemed to improve. What changed?
I think any change like this so close to the end of a season seems to bring a new air of positivity. Any team that gets a new manager always goes through a boost for a run of games & with the 5 league games she was in charge of there seemed to be more stability in the starting 11s. Only time will tell how much of a change she'll bring, looking forward to seeing the new look team progress this season.


4) Chelsea have a talented side but who do think in your opinion is the Blues star player and why?
Carly Telford. Definitely. She's a big presence in goal & always keeps the team's heads up in the game. Her recent stint in Australia will have done her the world of good in terms of experience & fitness levels (even though she broke her hand). She's would be a valuable asset to any team. I also have to give a mention to Raff (Claire Rafferty) she’s been unlucky with injuries which have stalled her development but she is a brave, committed player with a natural understanding of the game. I think she has a long career at the top level ahead of her.

5) Any Score prediction for the game?
As a neutral, with friends on both sides, I'll not predict the score! Especially for the first game of the season, not having seen the teams play & not knowing the fitness levels of those players who have been away on international duty. On paper though, Lincoln shouldn't lose. ...cagey enough for you :D

6) And finally can you tell us an unusual or interesting fact about Chelsea?
Hmm....I can give you a personal one about Chelsea’s ground, Staines Town FC...my ex-schooldays-boyfriend does the PA! (Although thankfully I’ve not spotted him at the Ladies matches and no, I’ve not spoken to him since we were 16!)



 My Thoughts on the game.

When the draw was made i was happy enough with it. I know its an old cliche but all you want from a cup draw is a home tie.  Chelsea have been much busier than Lincoln in pre season in terms of bringing players in, so they could take a few games to gel, so playing them early may be in Lincoln's favour. The Imps for the most part have kept most of last seasons team together with Lucy Staniforth heading to Bristol, Nic Hobbs departing for Doncaster, and Laura Alleway returning to Australia. The Imps have brought in arguably the signing of the season in the FAWSL by signing England's number one goal keeper Karen Bardsley, which now means Lincoln possess England's first choice keeper and centre back pairing. Skipper Casey Stoney has been struggling with an injury but will hopefully be fit for the game. Result wise i will stick my neck out and go for a 2-1 win for Lincoln. Just one last thing to mention; there are no replays in the Women's FA Cup, so if the scores are tied at the end of 90 minutes we have the standard 30 minutes extra time, then if needs be the dreaded penalty shootout. Wouldn't that be fun?

I would once again like to thank Lisa for her help in this article. You can follow her on Twitter at @lisa_Sleep and dont woget to check out the England Ladies supporters websire here http://www.thegangeng.com/


Entrance prices
(This game is not on the season ticket)

Adult £6
Child £3
Family £15

Highlights of Lincolns 2-0 home win over Chelsea last season.










Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Blidworth Welfare 2-1 Nottingham United.


On the menu today, step 7 non league football and a mouth watering clash between Central Midlands league southern division's Blidworth Miners Welfare and Nottingham United. This is the first step 7 match i have got to this season (shame on me i know) and what a match to pick. Nottingham United started the season like a house on fire; winning their opening five league games of the season. However the good start wasn't maintained and the side haven't registered a victory since and have now gone 18 games without a league win. Before kick off they sat in 14th place in the division (out of 17 clubs) having collected 17 points from  23 matches played, and sporting a goal difference of -40.

However, the homeside are also having a challenging season. Out of 22 games played the club have won just twice, drawn once, and lost 19. 24 goals have been scored with 84 being shipped at the other end. With the side's points haul standing at 7 points it isn't really surprising than the are at the foot of the table and indeed the entire footballing pyramid. They are not however adrift, as Blackwell MW are only two points better off, have a worse goal difference, and have played a game more, so a win today could lift Blidworth of the foot of the table. One plus for both clubs on show today however, is the fact that there is no relegation from this league as this really is the arse end of footballing universe.

And what attracted me to watch a game at said arse end of the footballing universe? Well a few factors. Firstly as i said before i haven't yet got to a CML game this season so it was about high time i put that right. But the big draw for me was it's a new ground so not only is it another "tick", but its a special tick.

Ever since i started groundhopping i have always been keen to tick of as many of the Nottinghamshire clubs all the way down to step 7 as possible, and before today only 5 remained to be visited. Blidworth, Clifton, Welbeck, Radcliffe Olympic, and Real United (who play at Gedling Towns old ground) With this kind of thing different people have different rules as what counts as a tick. In my case i am just interested in visiting the grounds and not ticking off the teams. I know that sounds strange so let me explain. For example AFC Mansfield play their home games at Forest Town FC. I have already visited Forest Town for a game when they were around, so there is no need to revisit for an AFC Mansfield game as the ground is pretty much the same. Some folk would want to revisit if a different club moves in but i am not that sad, yet... One reason i have not done Blidworth until now is the fact that its a bit awkward to reach from Retford by public transport as its involves taking two trains and a bus. However i called in a favour today and bagged myself a lift to and from the game from the Mind of an Imp official spell checker. Alas i couldn't persuade her to watch the game. Oh well her loss. Besides she enjoyed the four journeys she made through the wonderful Nottinghamshire country side anyway.

Having been dropped off with plenty of time to kill i wandered into the village to see what was happening. Not alot was the answer, i was hoping to find a pub but all that i could locate of interest was a decent looking chip shop. Having failed in my quest for alcohol, i wandered back up to the ground for a couple of pre match pints in the welfare. The welfare wasn't too busy apart from a card school going off in the corner. It's pretty big and looks to have events on most nights of the week. Well worth a visit. There is a large screen with Sky Sports on with the epic clash between St Mirren and Celtic being shown. Maybe that's why it was very quiet hardly a game to draw the punters in is it?

I left the warmth and comfort of the clubhouse at just gone 2.30pm and headed for the entrance. To get to the ground you have to walk past the cricket field and follow the signs. Today's entrance fee was the CML standard £3 with the programme coming in at £1.

I must say that i do really like the ground. Over the past few years the standard of CML grounds has gone down hill but Blidworth is a real jewel. The ground is set in a natural bowl so as you enter you get a great panoramic view of the ground. The team hut is positioned next to the entrance and programme seller. First stop was to pick up a cup of tea then head down the famous Blidworth steps into the ground.

There are two covered areas. The main stand is at the end of the ground that you enter and is a smart seated effort. Alone one touchline you get a small covered area with a long wooden bench along it. There is hard standing all around the ground with the pitch totally railed off. Its a smashing ground and certainly one of the best in the CML. Apart from South Normington i can't think of a better one i have visited.  The only down side was that it felt a bit lonely. Both teams were warming up on the pitch near the cricket field and the club officials and co were all up the top near the tea bar and brand new changing rooms, so at 2.40pm i was the only punter in the ground.

When the teams came out however, the crowd had swelled to about 20 or so. Blidworth were in a rather smart red and black halved kit with United in a dodgy looking orange number. Given that both sides have leaked goals it was perhaps not surprising that they both created plenty of chances, however most efforts ended up flying out of the ground. To both sides' credit though they did try to keep the ball on the ground and play the game the right way.

The homeside took a deserved lead on 9 minutes when a corner was whipped in from the left hand side and Barry Alberry got infront of his marker to glance home the ball into the bottom corner. A move straight from the training ground as they would say. Blidwoth continued to turn the screw but poor finishing let them down. They were however given a bit of a let off when their keeper failed to collect a cross, but the Nottingham striker fluffed the chance as a Blidwoth defender got back to hack the ball off the line. Blidworth held out till halftime and in my humble view they were well worth it. Elsewhere the Gary Simpson era at Lincoln City had got off to a dreadful start as the Imps went 1-0 down at Woking inside 20 seconds. However the Imps had fought back and levelled the scores and if my Twitter feed was to be believed had made much of the running in the game.

The second half followed in the vein of the first. United thought they had got back level when they bundled the ball in from close range but the ball had crossed the bye line before it was crossed back in. Then came one of those classic moments that you only get in non league football.

 The ball went out of play for a throw in to Blidworth deep inside their own half on the left handside touchline (as i viewed it from the seated stand). Now this side of the ground is fenced off by a 6 foot steel fence with spikes on the top and the ball had gone over this. The ref signalled to the Blidworth bench to throw another ball into play while the first was retrieved (the dugouts were on the same side of the pitch that the throw in was to be taken). So to this end one the young Blidworth subs decided to boot a ball to the throw in taker. However he somehow managed to boot it high enough that it took one bounce and went over the fence with the first ball. In reaction the chap waiting to take the throw shouted "Just roll it on the floor you f@@king retard". Another ball was found and the sub was sent to recover the two lost balls which wasn't easy when you are wearing shorts and trying to pick your way through thorns and bushes. Possibly not the most glamorous job in the footballing world, but a job that needed doing none the less.

Back to matters on the pitch, and Blidworth doubled their lead on 76 minutes. I would love to tell you all about it but alas i was having a piss at the time so missed the sodding goal. So it could have been a tap in or a 35 yard pile driver for all i know, what i did know was that United got very niggley when they went 2-0 down. However i did see Nottingham United force their way back into the game when Jamie Clarke was played in and slipped a cool finish under the on rushing keeper to set up a grandstand finish. Then in the last minute the home side had a golden chance to seal the win.
The sub from the previous 'ball over the fence' incident had been brought on with about 10 minutes to go and had made a couple of good runs and given the away defence plenty to think about. In the last minute after a great play to spring the offside trap and split the defence, he found himself one on one with the keeper. However he took one touch to many which gave the keeper just enough time to come out and smother him and the chance went begging. Thankfully the miss didn't cost the hosts and they claimed a famous win.

After the game i headed back to the bar for a swift pint before the Mind of an Imp blog shuttle service arrived. On my travels i have come across clubs that i wouldn't visit again and then you meet clubs that you would revisit at the drop of a hat. I am happy to say that Blidworth falls into the second category. Hopefully they will claim a few more points this season and build on it next year. If you haven't visited yet then get your arse down there. You don't know what you are missing. Great ground, great clubhouse, and a great programme. Oh, and the team can also play a bit!