About Me

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Hammersmith, London, United Kingdom
I'm a director of Maidenhead United Football Club. For ten seasons one of my roles at the club was to produce the match programme. The aim of this blog was to write football related articles for publication in the match programme. In particular I like to write about the representation of football in popular culture, specifically music, film/TV and literature. I also write about matches I attend which generally feature Maidenhead United.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Derby Day

With Maidenhead United and Staines Town meeting three times in the last four seasons on August Bank Holiday, this fixture is starting to acquire the welcome hallmarks of a local derby, and why not given the proximity of the two towns, not to mention the clubs' similar stature.
Yesterday's game certainly lived up to this billing, a close affair which could have gone either way although the loser would have felt duly aggreived at leaving with nothing.
Defying the wet forecast by playing in sunshine throughout, Staines, followed by a large entourage, started brightly putting the ball in the net in the tenth minute from an offside position. Star of the show David Wheeler then cut in from the right wing and forced Billy Lumley into a good save low down. Wheeler was the only survivor from last season's Staines squad which had spent most of the season in the relegation zone, and it was easy to see why he had been kept on by new manager Marcus Gayle.
Although Maidenhead started to have more of the game as the half hour mark approached, Lumley was beaten by a Teddy N'Goy header only for debutant James Regis to clear the ball off the line. It was another familiar player, ex Magpie Max Worsfold who created the games' opening goal, charging down a clearance, the loose ball finding its way to Wheeler to score.
Exhibiting the resilience which has been a salient feature of their play this season, the Magpies equalised within five minutes David Pratt heading in at the far post from a Michael Pook right wing cross. It was United that went on to finish the half in the ascendancy a Lee Barney cross from the right flying past the goal just out of the reach of Alex Wall at the stroke of half time.
After the break the game remained an even contest although relatively free of incident except for an Elliot Godfrey shot out of the blue which rattled Lumley's crossbar. With fifteen minutes left the substitutions began to take effect presenting both teams with an ideal opportunity to win the game. Firstly Tony Garrod raced into the clear but with only Lumley to beat, Garrod pulled his shot wide. From the goal kick Reece Tison-Lascaris broke free in similar fashion and this time went round the keeper to shoot on target only for a defender to get back and clear.
A draw then was a fair result and reflects a cagey opening month in the league with no team either with a 100% winning record or pointless, and 20 of the 43 games ending level. Monday also showed the robustness of the Magpie squad with Regis and Barney slotting in seamlessly to cover for Saturday's injury victims Harry Pritchard and Devante McKain, with the extra freshness of Staines, who had their game on Saturday abandoned after just eight minutes, not being a factor in the result.

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