Monday, 21 March 2011

Sutton United blog: Professor Brian Cox, JR Ewing and the Anglo-Italian Cup

Sorry for the lack of activity lately, my computer has thrown a hissy fit. I think the final straw came after watching Professor Brian Cox (pictured) take us on a journey through the Solar System on BBC iPlayer, so you can hardly blame it.  

If it hadn't been for that then I would have posted this ages ago.

Let me take you back in time...

It was one of the biggest talking points in Sutton since Dallas had everyone asking who shot JR?

Just over two weeks ago, in the borough’s bars, bistros and backstreet boozers its people were asking just one question; who scored for Sutton in their 2-1 defeat at Wealdstone?
Early indications pointed towards Craig Dundas, but shortly after the game, reports on the wires suggested that, in fact, Richard Jolly had found the net.

There's no doubt about it, RJ is as hungry for goals as JR was for money, but did he really have the final touch?
Well, confirmation arrived a few days later from FIFA’s Dubious Goals Committee. It was true, Dundas was outdone by the stetson-wearing RJ who, no-doubt, enjoyed a satisfying cigar safe in the knowledge another goal had been added to his already burgeoning balance.
I know what it’s like to claim a goal which everyone else thinks was scored by a team-mate.
The scene was the school playground as the clash between the First Year and Second Year entered the last few seconds before the bell for afternoon lessons.
It was a time when Sutton United conquered Europe, well Italy at least.
I was honoured to be selected for the First Year. It was my first cap at that level and I saw it as recognition for all the fitness training I had done playing Kiss Chase at primary school.
The game was finely poised at 8-7 to the boys representing the Second Year when I, like twenty of my team-mates, pushed forward for one last bid for an equaliser. With forty nippers chasing a tennis ball, it resembled a scene from the famous Eton Wall Game.
The Second Year boys were sweating, sensing they’d be the laughing stock of the school if they couldn’t beat the fresh-faced whippersnappers from the year below.
Suddenly, the ball fell invitingly to a lad called Raggett who lashed it with the laces of his size four Clark shoes.
Everything seemed to happen in slow motion as his shot found the ‘net’ – it was a wall really, with large white painted circles on it, like a target.
However, and here's the crux, the ball faintly flicked off my left trouser leg on its way in.
To be brutally honest, I was always more powerful with my right trouser leg, but at a time like that I wasn’t going to quibble.
I distinctly felt the ball hit my dark grey Farahs as it went past the mitten-wearing Second Year goalie and twelve defenders on the line to bring us level at 8-8.
A split-second later a huge shriek went up as my team-mates ran off to heap acclaim on their saviour, the buck-toothed Raggett.
Thinking I scored the late leveller, I went running off to another part of the playground to no acclaim whatsoever.
Then the bell sounded and the majority of the Second Year boys sank to their knees as my team-mates screamed with delight like giddy schoolgirls. For the first time in my life, I was glad I wasn’t part of the in-crowd.
As we headed off to our history lesson I tried to tell some of the boys my side of the story but they weren’t having it. As far as they and the history books were concerned, Raggett was the hero.
Any rate, there were no such issues in Sutton's last home game as Jolly and Dundas both found the net along with Leroy Griffiths to ensure the Amber and Chocolates overcame the rather robust challenge of Hendon.

Griffiths scored again for the Us at Hornchurch last Saturday in the 85th minute, but Sutton's joy was short-lived as the Urchins levelled with a 94th minute penalty.

That result was even more annoying when you consider Bury Town lost at home to Concord Rangers, but I guess we would have settled for a point in Essex before the game. I am still secretly gutted we didn't win though.

I alluded to Sutton’s winning of the Anglo-Italian Cup earlier on, and with very good reason.
The other day I had an email off a chap called Fabio who is a supporter of Sutton’s opponents in that final of 1979, Chieti Calcio.

He would like to know if anyone out there has any pictures or video clips from the Sutton-Chieti game which, I think, took place at Gander Green Lane on April 14, 1979. If so, drop him a line at

Fabio has also pointed me in the direction of an Italian blogger who follows Wealdstone. Check it out here. If you don't understand it then there's plenty of pictures to keep you happy.

Right, I'm off to iron my Farahs.


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