RAYNES PARK VALE F.C. VETS
10/09 SPELTHORNE SPORTS HOME 2-2
08/10 HOOK VENTURERS
15/10 SPELTHORNE SPORTS
22/10 GODALMING & FARNCOMBE AWAY (SFA VETS CUP) 3-3
(Lost on penalties after extra time)
05/11 VILLAGE VETS
12/11 KENSINGTON & CHELSEA AWAY 1-3
26/11 KT4 OLD BOYS
10/12 WEARSIDE RANGERS
17/12 MALDEN VALE STROLLERS HOME P-P
07/01 BRENTHAM CLUB
21/01 KENSINGTON & CHELSEA HOME 1-0
11/02 ROEHAMPTON AWAY
(PLAYED AT MANTOVA)
25/02 HOOK VENTURERS AWAY P-P
04/03 VILLAGE VETS AWAY
11/03 WORCESTER PARK
18/03 DITTON AWAY
25/03 NORTH GREENFORD UNITED AWAY 7-7
01/04 COBHAM CASUALS
22/04 WORCESTER PARK
VILLAGE VETS (0) 0
RAYNES PARK VALE VETS (0)
Desperate for a fixture, Manager Tony Dewar spent the most
of Saturday frantically ringing around trying to muster up enough players for a fixture at Deccas versus our old friends – Village Vets. Come Sunday morning,
he still didn’t know how many people were turning up and he even considered volunteering 104 year old Assistant Manager
Peter Allen. Luckily for Pete, eleven lads turned up, so he could continue his
usual Sunday routine of waving a flag, dreaming of hitting an iron and sucking on a big fat Cuban. Or is that dreaming of sucking on a big fat iron, whilst waving a Cuban flag ?!
The rain abated and Tony quickly ushered us into the changing
rooms and out onto the pitch before the wet weather returned. Emil volunteered,
nay sacrificed himself to play in goal even though he was going into hospital next week for a hand operation.
Phil Verrils wife, Janine, made herself an early candidate
for the (Wo)Man of the Match award by delivering a pair of goalie gloves for Emil just before kick off.
The rest of the team was made up of Paul Armour, who would
exude experience from right back and Monty Nathan, who would do the same from the left (sic).
Stevie Pollard, playing in his second game on the trot, would partner Captain Ossie Thomas in the centre of defence.
Mr. Phil Verrils (third best player in his immediate family – his daughter’s
absolute rubbish) would amble about on the left wing and Bod would entertain
us with his Christian Ronaldo impression on the right (have you heard a South London
lad doing a Portugese accent ?!). Centre midfield consisted of the Chuckle Brothers
themselves – Grant Harrison and Barry Kent. Up front were the Dynamic Duo
of Andy Brenen and the wandering minstrel himself – Dave Cox.
Considering the amount of rain that had fallen, the pitch
was in pretty good condition. Ossie won the toss and decided that we would kick
uphill in the first half.
Coxy was looking in good form and the ball was sticking
to his left foot like a limpet, unlike Verrill’s who was looking more like a muppet as he couldn’t decide what
side of the throw in line to play on. Fortunately, Monty was covering Phils mistakes.
Blimey that’s a phrase I’d never thought I’d say ! Village
could afford the luxury of making an early substitution due to injury, something Vale were unable to do, but we were making
it hard for them, especially as we were beginning to pepper the oppo’s goal with shots from Brels, Grant and Coxy. Village Vets clung on and hardly threatened the RPV goal or Emil’s hand. This was mainly due to the excellent work done by the defence. Ossie was marking his opponent as tight as a Scotsmans wallet and Paul Armour was as commanding as Montgomery
himself. Back up the other end, Raynes
Park forced a few corners, but Village kept the scoreline blank up to
Water and fags dispensed with and an encouraging word from
the management team, the second half got under way. Barry and Grant were controlling the midfield and Stevie Pollard was calming
things at the back. But then things changed as some of the Vale players were
regretting last nights excesses and with another sub, Village began to apply a bit more pressure and force a couple of corners. RPV had a lucky escape when a header rattled against their bar and out of play. A momentary scare, but we were not scared and we fashioned the best move of the game
soon after. Monty received a loose ball out left and fed Barry. With excellent vision and spotting a great run from Bod down the right, Barrys pin point pass made it easy
for Bod to cross to Coxy. A quick knock on and Andy Brenen beat the Village keeper
from 12 yards to put the Vale one nil up.
We should have pushed on, but with time running out Village
made a couple of last desperate attempts to find the equalizer. A towering clearing
header from Ossie kept the advantage to Vale, but a late tackle on an oppo forward soon after presented Village a direct free
kick 25 yards out. Curled towards the top left hand corner of the Vale goal,
it looked liked the home team had snatched a late equalizer. Unfortunately for
them, goalkeeper Emil had other ideas and somehow managed to spring like a Gazelle, stick out a left arm and tip the ball
past the post. A small smattering of invisible applause rang out silently, but
there was more work to do as the ensuing corner was met by a confident keeper again.
Alas the copy book was spoiled as Emil dropped a clanger and the ball, but a saving boot from Barry cleared the danger. The game ended unceremoniously as a chase into the Vale box between a Village forward
(big bugger too!) and Captain Ossie saw both players collapsing in a heap and the ball trickling into the keepers arms. All hell broke loose as Ossie accused the forward of diving. Oh dear, swinging rights and left hooks ensued. Luckily both
players were better at football and the boxing manouevers caused more danger to air traffic control than eachother or anyone
else. Common sense prevailed as the Ref blew for full time and both teams kissed
and made up on the way back to the bar.
So, a pleasing 1-0 win to the Vale and now the question
of the Man of the Match award. Both forwards ran their hearts out and the midfield
men battled it out for a full ninety minutes and created the winner. The defence
was magnificent in protecting the one armed bandit in goal and Janine Verrills was terrific in supplying an oven glove.
But undoubtedly the award must go to Captain for the day
– Ossie ‘Rocky’ Thomas.
Imposing, commanding, majestic – these are adjectives
you normally wouldn’t associate with Ossie. Neither would you use pugilistic,
barbaric or confrontational. But if you did hear some
of the language that came out of his potty mouth, you’d be scared enough of him to award him the MOTM accolade !
BRING YOUR DAUGHTER TO THE SLAUGHTER!
There was quite a crowd for Vale’s fixture at
Mantova. As usual another tough game was anticipated, especially as RPV had gained
their first ever victory over our opponents earlier in the season. So, after struggling just to field a full team in previous
weeks, both clubs had turned up with four substitutes.
Managers Dewar and Allen had lost the services of
defensive lynchpin, Barry Kent, who was practicing his ‘Sand Dance’ in Egypt, but they welcomed back the more than able replacement in Stevie ‘Body
Popping’ Pollard. Partnering him in defence was Ian Bennett with Monty
and Bod as full backs. Johnny ‘Ram’ was in goal with Emil, Brad,
and Grant making up the midfield. Our front two of Glen and Jason would no doubt
be scoring a hatful of goals and any problems would be eradicated by our super sub bench of Al, Ossie, PC Mike and the ‘Armour’.
The weather and pitch were in perfect condition as
Vale attacked the Railway End.
Alas, they lost Emil after just five minutes through
a leg injury and he was replaced by ‘Slipper of the Yard’, our very own PC Mike.
After applying a bit of pressure on the oppositions defence, the tables were turned and Mantova gained an early advantage
when a cross from the right wasn’t cleared. But Vale came back strongly
and, after winning the ball in midfield, Monty released Phil down the left flank. His
perfect cross found Glen on the edge of the box and his excellent right foot volley found the net to even matters up.
Unfortunately, it went downhill from there as Mantova
scored two more goals before the break. RPV also had the misfortune in having
to sub a sub as Mike under estimated his ‘chest infection’.
The second half saw more injuries and goals; alas
they both went against Raynes Park.
An accidental clash of heads saw Bradley concussed,
injured and receive a such a whopping bump on the head that even the ‘Elephant Man’ would call him ugly !
Straight away, Vale conceded a fourth, but strange
as it may have seemed, it only appeared that Mantova were scoring with every shot they had as Goalie John didn’t make
a single save and he just seemed to be picking the ball out of the net. Just
to prove the point, John picked out a fifth before the end.
Tired, beaten and bedraggled, Raynes Park retired to the changing rooms,
but a matter of our Man of the Match had to be decided.
Now I’ve known Paul ‘Monty’ Nathan
for five seasons now. Myself and the club has got used to his mickey taking etc.
They’ve also got used to his ‘average’ to ‘inept’ displays and inability to use his left foot. Recently he’s begged me to stop mocking him in these match reports as it’s
got too much for him, but credit where credits due, he was our best player and fully deserved his award. Well done.
It was with some
surprise to find out our fixture with local rivals Merton was on, and to be played on the Main Pitch. On inspection two vast blobs of mud were taken from the field and replaced by as much sand as you’d
find in Jade Goody’s navel after an hours’ sunbathing. Now that’s
a lot of sand ! Never mind Lawrence of Arabia, right back Monty Nathan looked
more like the Buddah of Suburbia and he’s now held in such low esteem by
his teammates, that we volunteered him as stand-in Ref due to Assistant Manager Pete Allen’s illness.
It was a pleasure, after
a long absence, to welcome Glen back into the Vale family. Hopefully his second
ever game for us would yield a similar result as his first a couple of months ago, a 3-2 victory over todays opponents.
Manager, Tony Dewar, also
welcomed back Camp Phil,
PC Mike and a revengeful Jason, who had a particular eventful game versus Merton last time.
On a par with his footballing
skills, Monty’s refereeing left a lot to be desired. He missed a couple of
blatant handballs. Embarrassed ourselves, we offered our apologies to our opponents
for his apparent biasedness and ineptitude. In fact, his ‘uselessness’
has become quite legendary and he has even recently received a couple of anonymous emails commenting on his ‘crapiness’. Perhaps an alternate ‘fan club’ could
be started or T-Shirts made up or a Web Site created for him. Perhaps not, but
keep those emails coming in, whoever you are !
To say Raynes Park rode
their luck was a bit of an understatement as Merton were only kept out by a combination of criminal finishing and great goalkeeping
from Jonathan the Ram. Vale actually took the lead when a Warren through ball sent PC Mike down the right wing.
His cut back found Andy Brenen free and with the whole of the goal gaping before him, he managed to find the Merton
goalkeepers’ gut. Luckily, an alert Jason followed up, tapped in and exorcised
a few demons in the process. Embarrassed by missing a sitter, Brenen Junior then
managed to strike both posts with one shot and still not find the net, but at least Raynes
Park went into the break one nil to the good.
The second half saw a
flagging Glen substituted by Monty and there’s the rub. All our good work
came to an end as we let in an equalizer and then a second. Truth be told we
hardly mustered a shot in the final 45 minutes and the only significant home moments came when an offside PC Mike, coming
back from an unsuccessful forward raid, became ‘active’ by kicking
the ball, when specifically told ‘not to ‘by an onside and rushing
Emil. Perhaps throwing a policeman onto the floor wasn’t the best thing
to do by Emil, but how we laughed in the bar afterwards. We all laughed even
louder when Monty’s old friend, the ‘Invisible Sniper’, shot him when all alone with the ball and no opponent
within ten yards of him. So his record of not having played in a losing half
came to an end as did our unbeaten three match run. Final score – RPV 1 Merton 2.
RPV Man of the Match – The Invisible Sniper.
Kensington & Chelsea 0 Raynes
Park Vale Vets 1
As I passed over Hammersmith Bridge,
it felt like I was coming home. The sky was bluer, the air smelt fresher and
my non-bread diet was a week old.
I was in a happy frame
of mind as I turned into the Chiswick Civil Service Sports Ground. Pumped up,
I turned down my Punk Rock on the car stereo and hoped to see a full compliment of RPV players and substitutes. Alas, a bare 11 of us had bothered to turn up, not a good omen as our opposition had triumphed 3-2 earlier
in the season and this time turned up with three subs.
Undeterred, the Management
team had enough faith in the team, even if it included Monty Nathan. The ‘Ram’
himself, Jonathan, would see to the custodian duties with Ant & Dec, sorry – Ian and Barry providing central defensive
cover with Ossie and Monty attempting to look like full backs.
The midfield Generals were
myself and the Mussolini/Boneparte look-a-like, Grant with Bod and Warren acting as wing men.
Super Al Mayers would play through the big toe pain barrier to heroically partner top scorer Andy Brenen up field.
A strong cross wind seemed
to keep the ball to the left hand side of the pitch, therefore space was tight and the ball seemed to go off quite a lot. Grant broke his New Years Resolution within the first ten minutes by offering Monty
some unsavoury advice on what to do with ball – advice not taken ! At the
other end, Vale won themselves a corner, but I forgot the routine that had seen Ian Bennett score against us once and my inswinger
pathetically the found the side netting.
Barry Kent was orchestrating
things at the back and Jonathan was having a relatively quiet time. Half time
came with no score and no substitutions and Manager Dewar was satisfied with the teams effort.
K & C had the adavantage
of bringing on some players with fresh legs, but we still held our own in the stamina stakes – perhaps we were all on
non-wheat diets. Midway through the second half Vale took the lead when a Motty
free kick into the area was headed back across the goal by a soaring Grant. Brenen
Junior legally challenged the knock down with the Oppo’s keeper and the
ball fell kindly to me 30 …ok, 6 yards out to rifle home.
1-0 to the Vale, but Kensington
soon forced a corner and the ensuing kick caused mayhem around our own goal. The
wicked inswinger almost caught Jonathan out, but he had the agility to bundle the ball past the nearside post. Unfortunately, Jonathan also managed to bundle Monty onto the post and a unanimous decision from the rest
of the Vale players said that play should continue without our left back as he lay prostrate in our goalmouth. Alas the gentlemen from Kensington showed enough Corinthian Spirit to delay play until Monty had sufficiently
recovered – boo !
K & C had one last throw
of the dice by bringing on the previous encounters’ speedy match winner, but Vale shackled any further attempts on goal
and saw out the rest of the half to win it by the only goal. An excellent team
performance and a deserved after match beer made it a pleasant Sunday and I even toasted a couple of hot cross buns as a reward.
We weren’t a happy bunch as we traipsed into the depths of bandit country,
otherwise known as Godalming. There were traffic problems, it was an afternoon
kick off and it was very wet.
In fact, it was so wet that we might as well have got our new shirts, put
them in a bath and then put them on. It was so wet, that Noah had parked his
Ark in the Car Park, but Jacques Cousteau had cried off. Undeterred thirteen brave heroes entered the sodden battlefield, but maybe the bravest
of them all, shivering Manager Tony Dewar, awaiting a new hip replacement operation, took his accustomed position by the side
of the pitch. Then again, a little rain didn’t hurt anyone and some of
the players’ kids were running around, kicking a ball and acting like pigs in shi
– er, muck.
RPV lost the toss and were elected to defend the shallow end in the first
half. It was not a competent start as Raynes
Park battled against continual lashing rain and a strong wind. On top of that Vale adopted a poor offside trap which let in an oppostions’ lively
centre forward to open the scoring for Godalming. At the other end, we were finding
it difficult to penetrate the oppositions half, but eventually Andy Brenen made tracks into Farncombes 18 yard box only to
be cynically scythed from behind. The Referee waved play on and soon after we
were two down when Farncombe scored again in a move similar to their first goal.
The rain continued to lash down fiercely, but through the doom and gloom and
just before half time, we gave ourselves a ray of hope as a Jason Carberry through
ball found Brenen Junior, who had escaped around the back of the G & F defence.
His excellent control and measured right foot finish helped reduce our arrears to 1-2.
By now, sodden to the skin, but happier and more confident in mood, Tony gave a rousing half time pep talk and thanked
an injured Ossie for his Herculean effort.
Although Vale had the wind at their backs, they still struggled to play in
the more advanced positions as Godalming employed a rather dubious offside game which was regularly complimented by their
young and impressionable linesman. The opposition still made a few in roads around our area, but the RPV defence of Ian, Barry,
Steve and Warren gave sound protection to goalie Jonathan.
Any advantage Farncombe had was wiped away as a through a ball let in Brenen
again and although his initial effort was saved by the advancing keeper, a fortunate ricochet back off Andy’s legs found
the ball nestling in the back of the oppositions net.
It was only a great last minute finger tipped save that stopped Andy Brenen
getting a hatrick and a winner, so both teams and a poor, drenched Tony Dewer had to endure further torrential conditions
and an extra thirty minutes.
Vale piled on the pressure and got their just rewards when Brenen and Mayers
combined to send in a lofted cross for Grant to outjump everyone and guide the ball into the net for a 3-2 lead. Desperate for an equalizer, Guildford piled forward and only a magnificent
save from Jonathan kept the advantage in favour of RPV. G & F forced four corners in succession, but each time Vale kept
the ball away from their goal. Then, just as we thought the tie was over, a straight
goal kick from Jonathan was lumped back towards his goal and in what was most probably the games most defining moment, a Farncombe
forward received the returning ball, chested, swivelled and unleashed a superb volley to snatch a last gasp equalizer.
By now, Tony Dewer was absolutely saturated as was one of the goalmouths,
so the penalty kicks would have to be taken up the other end. Just as luck would
have it and to add to the drama, the other penalty spot was flooded, so the ref placed the ball one yard left of the spot. A dripping Dewer asked for 5 volunteers and five hands were raised. Only five mind
you, that’s ONLY FIVE.
Five heroes and it wouldn’t matter if they all missed, they’re
ALL heroes – especially if anyone missed !
Warren scored, Andy scored. Then Emils penalty was
miraculously saved and Bradley missed the goal by a whisker when a freakish wind passed by.
Ok, truthfully, Emil patsied a tortoise to a yawning keeper and Bradley slippered his kick 10 yards wide of the goal,
but they were still heroes.
So our Cup dream was over for another year and we returned home in the dark,
miserable and soaked. At least Monty wasn’t there !
Merton 2-3 Vale
Vale won 3 - 2 Goals from
Grant Harrison 2 (including a penalty when Andy Brenen was fouled or did he dive) and subsequently blazing over a second pen
to blatantly enter the annals of serious jug avoidance. The winning goal was turned in by Phil Verrells off his backside without
any intention of intervention but chalking off Jason Carberry's goal bound shot to make it 2 in 2 for the Verrells.
In stoppage time Ian Bennett
didn't realise it was stoppage time as he did not stoppage a trickling free kick which he allowed through his legs to make
the scoreline more competitive.
VET VEX, THEN VICTORY
After Englands disappointing World Cup Tournament, it was great to get back to some good
old fashioned Sunday amateur football as we travelled to our old friends Spelthorne for this seasons opening Vets fixture. Many uncleaned boots were pulled out of musty plastic bags for the first time since
our honourable draw against a mixture of first teamers etc, on May Cup Final day.
A succession of familiar faces turned up in the
car park and it was good to see the enthusiasm of Vets’ footballers rather than the money grabbing prima donnas of the
professional world. I tell you, if you’ve got a choice between Ashley Cole,
whingeing about a ‘paltry’ extra £5000 a week to all and sundry, or the honest endeavours of an untalented Monty
Nathan – I know whom I’d want fighting in my corner.
Ashley of course. Then again I’d rather
have George Cole or Nat King Cole or even a piece of coal rather than Monty !
An excellent first half saw the Vale take a deserved
2-0 advantage through the goals of PC Mike and an un-PC Grant. Unfortunately, without a regular keeper available, the custodial
duties were spread between Ian and Emil. Congratulations were in order to Ian,
in making a great tip over from a long distant strike and in keeping a clean sheet.
Unfortunately the same can’t be said for the second half performance of the team and Emil’s spell between
A hatful of Vale chances went begging, but it
was a pathetic short corner routine between Warren and Ossie that ended up with Spelthorne scoring three touches later past a bemused Emil in the Vale goal. Not that he was having a good game between the sticks as out of his seven touches, at least two of his
kicks were sliced to the opposition and another two were to pick the ball out of the net.
So the Man-of-the-Match ‘bouquet’ went to PC Mike and the ‘brick bat’ to Manager Tony Dewar
for picking the inept second half goalkeeper.
A week later and it was a new adventure into West London as we took on new opposition in an unnervingly well spoken Brentham Old Boys. A very warm morning in Ealing saw a thirteen man squad assemble.
Assistant Manager, Peter Allen, made his first appearance with his trusted companion Mr. Half Corona, but it was especially
pleasing to see proper goalkeeper Jonathan return. Finally, Paul Wilson, took
the place of an unavailable PC Mike who was on duty and most probably out busting a ‘dogging ring’ somewhere.
RPV were on the back foot from the off and they
led a charmed life as Brentham proceeded to miss a few opportunities, especially by Jonathans right hand post. Monty was having an absolute mare at left back and this was
causing arguments and friction between team mates. Some of us wanted him replaced,
whilst others wanted him shot !
Brentham eventually took a deserved lead, but
equalized almost immediately when a route one boot out from Jonathan found Grant who in turn fed Andy Brenen. With a hop, skip and a jump he avoided an oncoming keeper
and coolly placed the ball firmly in the net from the edge of the area. A tad
fortunate, but considering the referee wasn’t doing RPV any favours by turning down a penalty appeal and missing a handled
back pass by the oppo’s keeper, we were happy to take a one all score line into the break. Luckily for Monty, he was pulled off at half time before he was lynched.
Replacing him and Emil were able subs, Al and Andy.
The second half appeared to be heading for a stalemate,
but once again the referee would play a part in the final outcome. Brenen Junior
had a strong penalty appeal turned down, but Brentham were awarded a dubious direct free kick just outside the Raynes Park penalty
area. A stout wall was assembled, but the ensuing shot somehow managed to find
the only gap possible, giving the home team a 2-1 win. Could it get any worse ?
A one and a half our trek home through the Sunday
afternoon traffic answered that one.
Week Three and we had the daunting task of trying
to muster our first victory of the season at Mantova. The stats were against
us as we had never beaten our old foes, but Dewar and Allen had faith in the players that had turned up. Steve Pollard joined Ian Bennett at the back, whilst Barry Kent bolstered the midfield with Bradley Woodbridge.
The tactics appeared to be working as RPV went
close on a number of occasions and eventually a right wing cross was brilliantly/fortunately dummied by Jason on the edge
of the Mantova box and for the second year running Phil Verrils came in to score the opener.
But unlike last years blaster, this effort was a succinct, daisy cutting, tortoise-like trickler that fooled everybody
into thinking it was either going wide or was going to be easily gathered up by the home keeper. I think Phil was the most surprised as the ball found the corner of the Mantova net.
Embarrassed by the goal, Mantova began to apply
more pressure on the RPV goal, but for a good ten minutes Stevie Pollard was outstanding at marshalling the defence and mopping
things up at the back, whilst Ian Bennett was sticking out of all sorts of limbs to keep the opposition at bay. Alas, in a lapsed moment, a Mantova forward got a shot in and although Jonathan managed to parry the initial
effort, a second forward rammed in the rebound to equalise.
Undaunted by the equaliser, the Vale re-took the
lead when an alert Brenen Junior nipped the ball off of a dithering Mantova centre half from a poor goal kick and chipped
in for a 2-1 lead, but once again RPV were to shoot themselves in the foot as they immediately conceded a second. A break down our left flank saw a deep cross that was allowed to find a Mantova player and he slid in a
second from an acute angle at the far post. Half time came without any further
incident and the management team decided to bring on Bod and Al to strengthen the defence and offer an alternative up front.
Soon after the re-start, RPV won themselves a
corner on the right hand side. Barry Kents precision cross was met by a gazelle-like
Bradley and his superb header crashed past the Mantova keeper. Hopefully we could
hold on this time and perhaps edge further ahead. Although Mantova pushed forward
again, Raynes Park
were now commanding and clearing most attacks with the whole team defending as one.
Jon was keeping out any stray shots or crosses and Vale even managed a few uphill attacks of their own. Alas, it was usually the final pass that went missing, but RPV looked dangerous on the break.
In a final flourish, a great run from Al saw him
put through in a one on one with the Mantova keeper. Unfortunately his feeble
attempt at a lob wouldn’t have troubled a five year old child. Could that
have been the telling moment of the whole game ?
Were the opposition going to punish Vale’s failure to see the game off
? In the final minute, a cross from the men in dark blue evaded the RPV
defence and surely the Mantova centre forward was going to head in from 6 yards. Thank
Goodness he had a pointed head as the ball went at least three yards wide, giving Raynes Park their first ever victory over
A magnificent game and result that everybody contributed
to, even young Patrick Armour who helped run the line. There were many candidates
for Man of the Match.
Ian or Steve or perhaps Barry, biting at everything in midfield or the goals and selfless running of Andy up front. But the MotM accolade must go to Bradley for his magnificent winner and if his wife reads this, she might
be proud enough to let him out again without nagging !