Monday, 14 March 2016

Nottingham Forest 1 v Barnsley 0 - PU21DL & Ilkeston 0 v Chesterfield 3 - HKL NMU21L

Monday 14th March 2016 - 1PM
Professional U21 Development League 2 
at the City Ground, Nottinbgham
Nottingham Forest (0) 1
Deimantas Petravicius 50
Barnsley (0) 0
Admission Free
A rostered day off work on the same day as 'our lass'; the sun is shining brightly, the sky is a striking shade of blue, the starlings are rehearsing for the imminent arrival of Spring and there isn't a cloud in sight.
"It's a nice day, do you fancy a day out shopping!?" 
Ha, ha, not effing likely!
But the fair city of Nottingham kills two birds with one stone on this most pleasant of days and after wolfing down some scran in somewhere I believe was called the Pit and Pendulum, while discussing how crap I am as a companion in ladies clothes shops, I offered to give her some spends while I nipped off in pursuit of a few bits and pieces I was after elsewhere, while she could browse all those really interesting pairs of shoes, handbags, bras and outer garments at her leisure.
Some men have mistresses, others have sneaky drug habits (we are in Nottingham after all) or have a secret porn stash tucked away... but I'm far too wholesome and clean for any of that kind of caper and instead of indulging in any sort of debauchery, I nipped off over the Trent Bridge to watch an Under 21's football match at the City Ground, whilst generously donating the heady sum of £14.65 towards her expenditure and left her with a peck on the cheek and instructions to fill her boots and meet me at the top end of Upper Parliament Street at around 3.15PM. I suppose some people, might call it a football addiction.
Admission to Forest's ground was ex gratis, but it was too late to give her the other fiver I had in my wallet now, so I took my seat and counted how many of the fixtures and fittings are actually named after Brian Clough. I half expected to see a 'Dougie Freedman Exit Gate', but would've been more concerned if I'd found a 'Billy Davies Entry Door."
The first half of this game, played on a gloriously sunny afternoon by the banks of the River Trent, was goalless, as both teams weighed each others strengths and weaknesses up. The tempo reminded me of a pre season friendly.
Jak McCourt looked odds on to have given the Tykes the lead, but his well struck effort dropped narrowly the wrong side of the upright.
Forest had a couple of decent chances, but the visitors kept out both Andreas Karo and Gerry McDonagh.
Straight after the break, Barnsley's Nick Townsend had an easy save to make when Alex Iacovitti headed the ball straight at him, but on 50 minutes Deimantas Petravicius netted the only goal of the game, shooting across Townsend after James Thorne had done well to make the opening.
The game was a fairly evenly matched affair and both sides obviously have some decent prospects on their books and a plethora of ever present scouts keeping an eye out for when certain players are inevitably released by their respective clubs. Don't these guys have proper jobs to go to!?
Forest failed to capitalise on a great chance to kill the game off at one end and Jack Cowgill was guilty of missing a sitter at the other.
FT: Nottingham Forest Youth 1 v Barnsley Youth 0
When I liaised with Mrs W once again, she had obviously gone over budget, but I forgave her, it was probably just comfort spending on her part, because she had been called to go into work this evening at 5.30PM until late. 
She apologised for abandoning me on our night off, but due to staff shortages it really couldn't be helped. 
On the way back up the A614 towards the more salubrious end of the county of Nottinghamshire, my better half asked why they have two stars above the tree badge on Forest shirts, I replied "Oh, that is because all their main lads work at McDonald's and they need to attain to attain a two star rating before they can travel to away games."
Okay I'm fibbing, no such conversation ever took place but I never miss an opportunity to tell that gag. 
Oh well, I'd just have to find something else to do this evening instead of that trip to the cinema in Worksop, yet again.
I wonder what else there could be in the offing for little old lonesome me tonight!? 
Phwaar, phwaar, phwarr.
Several phone calls and text messages later, an impromptu jolly boys outing to Derbyshire had been arranged. 
Now get that bleedin' overtime in and replace some of this afternoon's retail therapy excesses yon wench; meanwhile, Ilson here we come!
Monday 14th March 2016 - 7.45PM
at the New Manor Ground
Ilkeston FC (0) 0
Chesterfield (1) 3
Ryan Herbert 38 seconds
Danny Williams 53 minutes
Danny Start 90+2 minutes
Admission £2
Left click to enlarge
It's not everyday that you turn up at a football ground and a former Mansfield Town player (and manager) makes you a decent cup of coffee, strong enough to stand the spoon up in... just the way I like it. So many thanks for that Paul Holland.
It was a real shame that his playing career went downhill and he played for a couple of lesser teams after leaving the Stags, but in spite of that he's a top bloke and it's good to see he's still involved with the game at the New Manor Ground.
Paul 'Dutch' Holland
Usually you are guaranteed an entertaining display of football, played in the correct manner, i.e the quick passing and moving while keeping the ball on the deck variation of the beautiful game, from Ilkeston's academy sides.
Alas, we caught up with them while they were having an off night and the three nil win for the young Spireites was a fair reflection of the game overall, as a quite ordinary looking 'shadow squad' of development players from the land of the crooked spire, easily saw of an uncharacteristically below par Robins side.
Tonight THE66POW entourage was joined by everybody's favourite Romanian football manager and Skoda salesman: Rudy Funk and his chairman Mr Andrew Saunders, who were running the rule over Chesterfield in preparation for AFC Mansfield's U21 cup tie against Sean O'Neill's side in a weeks time.
I'm not entirely sure what they would have made of the visiting side tonight, apart from pin pointing how useful Danny State and Danny Williams are, especially if you stand off them and give them space to do their thing, but I would've imagined that was already common knowledge in local development league football.
They two guys on a scouting mission sure as hell reminded me of another comedy duo.
Right, assuming that the relevant numbers on the splendidly appointed, free full colour team sheet (Ta, very much, young man!) are correct, the match details below will be too... just about!
If they're not, oh well, it is actually okay to put stuff that isn't 100% true, accurate or correct on the internet, everybody else does it.
The visitors were in front after just 38 seconds, when Ryan Herbert drilled home an angled shot from ten yards out... completely against the run of play ;-)
Reid Owen was trying his level best to supply a range of crosses and flicks into Chesterfield's penalty area, but none of his Ilkeston team mates seemed overly fussed about getting onto the end of the service he was providing.
Ben Cartwright's twenty yard shot was only just wide of the mark as the Spireites almost doubled their lead against an alarmingly indifferent looking 'Ilson' team, who were playing as if they didn't have a care in the world now they are no longer top of the league, or likely to win it again this season, like they did last term, especially now that Staveley won again tonight.
In the 53rd minute Danny Williams ran 45 yards unchallenged before rolling the ball under Jahquil Hill to double Chesterfield's lead.
Having gone two goals behind, Ilkeston bucked their ideas up a bit and began to impose themselves around the Robins goalmouth, but a combination of profligate finishing and a good stop by Ellis Spencer, meant that the home side registered a big zero on the night.
In stoppage time, Chesterfield won a corner out on the left, Danny State collected the ball from the flag kick, swapped it onto his right foot and spanked a shot past Hill, who must have been wondering where his usually reliable defence had cleared off to tonight.
I'd never even pretend to like Chesterfield FC and am immensely proud of the fact that so many of their supporters dislike me with a passion, but even I've got to concede that they got the final scoreline they deserved tonight... and to be fair, so did Ilkeston.
FT: Ilkeston U21 0 v Chesterfield U21 3