Wednesday, 16 May 2012

The Football Season Draws to a close - Part 2

Mayfield 3rd XI secured promotion with a 6-0 away win at Old Bealonians. I played no part other than suggesting to one of the players to hit a corner harder so it would hit someone and go in. He did, it did. 3-0 just after half time.

I was delighted that the team I had built the previous season had gone up, but felt detached from them. The only game I had got on to the pitch for was a 3-3 home draw with Old Bealonians. Five minutes, and my knee collapsed. It was the last time I had attempted to play football so coming here to see them play was tinged with sadness.

On the way home I reflected on the fact that most of my team are under 30, making most of them at least 17 years younger than me. When I finally get fit again, would I be able to even get in the team? I watched London whizz by and looked forward to another game I was due to watch. I had been persuaded to go to Stockholm to watch the England Writers team take on their Swedish counterparts. As a regular member of this team I would normally be playing. Since the injury I have been the de facto manager for our occasional friendlies and this was our first international since the operation.

The Swedes are a strong team and rumours had it that there would be three former professional players in their squad. As it turned out there was only one, and he had only played youth team football for Inter Milan and was capped at youth level for his country! Easy peasy.

I spent the week before the game pondering my options. We have rolling substitutes so that everyone gets an even time on the pitch. This has its problems as some players think we should always just play to win. I don't think it is fair for someone to fly all that way and just get 10 mins. Anyway, I found a system, told the chaps, and also introduced a new corner routine. As it happened this was my best contribution as it led to both our goals and a half time 2-0 lead. In the second half we wilted and they equalised but we finished best and should have won.

I spent the whole weekend wishing I was playing. I found it tough being in the group and not playing but I'm glad I went. As I got the tube home from the airport with Paul he pointed out that the next time we go abroad I will be fit to play. That felt good.

No comments:

Post a Comment