Wealdstone 2, Poole Town 2   1 comment

Stones v Poole ticket

Match synopsis: Wealdstone dominated the match drawing first blood then going into the halftime break tied after a dodgily ‘earned’ penalty shot from one of the Petulant Poole players.  The Stones made it 2-1 in the later part of the 2nd half only to eat a 90th minute goal from the oddly (and suddenly) energised visitors.

Rain didn’t dampen the spirit of the match (and the Ruislip Social Club was there to wet my whistle).  I’ll have to come back…this was fun.

into Grosvenor Vale

The background to my day out at Grosvenor Vale:

I like football.  I played it in high school when no one really knew what it was: our Recreation Department was able to field 4 teams in 1977 with enough players — by making them coed — to have one substitute per team.  I even worked as a referee from 1978 – 82 as it started to catch on around the South (more with young women than the lads, but there you go).

So, you may wonder, why have I lived in the ancestral home of footie for nearly 8 years (and now a short run to its holiest shrine) and still not been to a match there?  More than anything, I refuse to be gouged on the price: Swindon Town games cost £20 (maybe more, now) just to get in the gates and they’re in a lower league while Liverpool (who I would love to see) stiff their fans from £37-59 (although the Anfield stadium does have a few seats in The Gods for 9 quid a piece).  In Holland, Italy, and Germany (all of which I’ve gone to see top-tier teams play), prices are modest to cheap (so it doesn’t have to be this way — Brits just take it and ask for more).

Now we live in a “Non-League” town with a football team that’s well-beloved and vigorously supported.  Wealdstone is in one of the 2 lower tables of the first conference below League 2.  It’s hard to put an American equivalent to this what with the mobility of teams across the various leagues and conferences.  Major League Baseball’s farm structure is closest.  You can probably think of the Premier and Championship Leagues as the big leagues back home, and Leagues 1 & 2 as akin to AAA ball.  The top non-league conference, then, is sort of AA with their lower tables most like single A ball.  Wealdstone, then, is the equivalent of the Macon (now Rome) Braves or the Savannah Sand Gnats (now the Columbia Fireflies).  Minor League ball is the shit, back home, with fans more rabidly dedicated (and drunk) than you usually see at a Major League outing (where the beer prices are similar jacked up out of reasonable reach).

Non-League Day, an annual set-aside wherein no Premier or Championship League matches are held to help promote the lower eschelons of the Football Association, came around.  For this, Wealdstone lowered the admission price to a fiver.  I couldn’t really say, “no,” to that.

 

Grosvenor Vale stands

 

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Posted September 5, 2016 by Drunken Bunny in sport

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One response to “Wealdstone 2, Poole Town 2

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  1. Pingback: Ruislip Social Club, Ruislip, Middlesex | The Endless British Pub Crawl continues...

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