Monday, 30 January 2012

Weathering the footy storms...

Don't get me wrong, I like Winter. There's loads of time off work, office parties, makeshift Nordic bars popping up in pedestrianised parts of town, etc.

But there's one thing missing...
...and that's a good old game of honest-to-goodness, 11-a-side, grass-roots, amateur football.

It's boring not playing a game of football. And when I say boring, I mean boring in the sense of every bugger driving to the ground knowing full well that the game isn't going to be played. Just because we've got to see the ref try (and fail) to push the key to his Honda Civic into the frozen turf. When the key doesn't penetrate the pitch, he holds it aloft, like he's discovered alchemy and wants the world to see, and decrees that the meeting of these two sides simply cannot place under his watch.

Half the players have left already anyway, but still it rests on him. I mean he could call them back if he wanted to. Although the feeling of being dismissed like a cash machine beggar would sting him more than being hit by a ball in this temperature.

So far our team, Mancunian Wave FC, has had every game in 2012 cancelled due to the weather (except for a 6-2 defeat last Sunday but we don't talk about that). Plus if you believe the weatherman, we're in for a cold snap akin to what those daddy penguins suffer every year when sitting on their wife's egg for 3 months, as Attenborough would testify.

Chances are, then, more games will be cancelled. And as more games get cancelled, there's less faith amongst the players that the next game will be on. That's when you get the texts on Sunday morning, about the niggling injury that's still niggling after last week's training, the aggravated muscle tear that's raised its head again, the ruptured anterior cruciate ligament sustained whilst plunging a cafeteria.

And you know what, it's fair enough. When it's 2 degrees outside and you wake up feeling stiff (insert innuendo here) who wants to trudge down to the pitches to watch a ref stab the pitch for 10 minutes?

With us, we've kept the momentum going with our usual mid-week training sessions. And, oddly, they've been better during the time we've had no matches - I guess because those who come down are desperate to play.

Training doesn't get you 3 points though. Well, neither do many of our league games either, cynics might say. But it's only when it all warms up for a spell that we'll found out for sure whether we can transfer top-notch training to the proper games - and I can't wait,

Winter: go do one!