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The Scout - Goal fest

I awoke on Saturday to blazing sunshine and a game that did not look great on paper but actually turned out to be a stormer.

I don’t think I can write this week’s blog without a note on England’s two performances, a win with ease and a draw that pinpointed our lack of technical ability.

The win was a good morale-boost and to be honest, once you score early against a minnow you have a great chance of adding a lot more goals.

That said the Ukraine game was a good lesson in how different the quality of teams are in Europe.

A stark lesson 

With Andriy Shevchenko retired and some in the media saying Ukraine are rebuilding, it was a stark lesson that no matter how good we think/want England to be, we lack the technical ability to hurt a well-drilled side.

I could rant on more but it would be pointless, let’s be happy with a draw and move onto the next one.

I arrived at Saturday’s game in a shirt and tie, nothing new there but at a non-league ground you stand out like a bumblebee on dog rubbish.

The intention was to blag a parking space, it did not work and the utterance of the club I was working for just made it worse.

I was pointed in the direction of another car park and ended up trying to force my not so quick car up a huge kerb.

All sorted, I was greeted by the car park steward who decided to give me the ins and outs of his team.

This is not uncommon and I politely nodded and said I would look out for those players but I was actually watching the opposition. There was silence and then a few more frivolous questions and on I went.

Their 'own' seat 

At every non-league ground you will find that certain individual home fans have their ‘own’ seat. No matter who you are, even if it’s your first time at the ground, you have to have known this.

I picked up my obligatory burger and rancid coffee and then started to find the ‘ideal’ view.

I sat in their wooden stand just off the halfway line and waited for that said person to say, you are in my seat!

I was quite surprised that on this occasion I was not hassled or asked to move.

My mind wanders back to every time I go to watch Braintree Town, no matter where I sat in the main stand it was somebody’s seat! How the hell does that happen when they only get a small crowd?

The first time I went, I shifted three times. I am now a regular up there and sometimes even get a biscuit off of the old lady who has her ‘own’ seat in the row below.

I digress, the game started with the normal ebb and flow of long high balls, when I realised that the opposition’s forward was a familiar face.

The overweight forward 

He is your obligatory 6ft 5in tall, overweight forward, who has the ability to wind up everyone he comes across.

I once described him in a report as the man they pulled from the pub just after eating his meat pie!

I was pleased to say he did not let me down as he was utter rubbish and missed a penalty too.

What is it with left footers and penalties? Is it me or nine times out of 10 they seem to miss?

To cut a long story short (editor has me on tight reign) the home side stormed to 6-1 win with four goals from the on-loan striker.

I did get harassed by a few supporters asking the normal questions of who are you, what are you doing.

This is where I normally set them some half-time homework to see if they can guess and normally they wander off and never come back.

The loan system 

On this occasion, the old guy came back and said I have the answer, the silence was deafening and you know what he never actually got round to telling me!

The on-loan striker scoring four for his new side is a good tedious link for my thoughts on ‘loan’ players. I personally think its brilliant and it enriches the league’s they drop down into.

I note the joy in the face of this loan player as well as noting that a young player on loan from Crawley to Met Police also scored five in their respective FA Cup tie.

I am not one of these people that believe you should not loan players into the same league.

Let’s look at Cleverley and Sturridge, two young England players who have now flourished because of their spells with Wigan and Bolton.

Our young talent are sitting in the wings waiting to gain experience and hopefully push on, without that Premier League experience they would probably stay in the ressies or sign for a lower league side.

At present the influx of cheaper foreign players could potentially have a direct negative impact on our national side.

If you have any questions please send them in and I will do my best to answer them in my next blog entry – to protect my identity, please email your questions to Total Football’s editor Mark Roach: mark.roach@totalfootballmag.com

The Scout

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