Concrete boots and Clay

Cod Almighty | Match Report

by Tony Butcher

29 March 2016

Macclesfield Town 2 Grimsby Town 1

A gusty day of scudding, scuttling showers and nine hundred Townites drove on through the storm, held their heads up high and put up their brollies.

Town lined up in the abstract 4-3 and another one somewhere-2 as follows: McKeown, Tait, Gowling, Nsiala, Robertson, Nolan, Clay, Disley, Arnold, Amond and Bogle. The substitutes were Horwood, Pearson, Hoban, Jennings and Stewart. Right, so the same lopsided, shapeshifting let's-hope-the-opposition-don't-notice-the-blackandwhite-hole formation then. Well, we're all happy, hope you're happy too, now Omar's back and the opposition have nothing to play for. Nothing can go wrong now. Cha-cha-cha.

Macclesfield. Same as they ever was. In blue, a muddying pitch of developing divots and ladies-and-gentlemen-boys-and-girls, a droning dirgemeister as mein host and master of ceremonies. Have some decorum and shut up.

Let's dance.

First half: There's a leak near Leek

Town kicked off away from the iron stand.

We'll start the show in a minute.

Tait defenestrated and Rowe skipped away. A tipple, a tickle, Holroyd poked through McKeown's legs and pink ankles clapped together to divert the ball against the outersidermost of the near post.

We'll start the show in a minute.

A free kick. A header. Dimple-grazed as Townites lazed. Lazy. Mentally, physically lazy.

Don't worry, we'll start the show in a minute.

Shoddy, shonky, shocking and Arnold. Our midfield. I say midfield: men in the middle of a field.

Ah, legs shaken, minds stirred. A tick and a tock and Nolan burstled steamlessly down the middle. Amond swayed and sliced into the bongo boys behind the goal. The bingo boys were in the pub; they're not daft.

Craig Clay. Barwickian in his Downeyness. The more he tried the more we cried. What about Bogle's boggle? You may ask, I might not give the answer that you want me to. Oh well.

We'll start the show in a minute.

A nothing of nowhereness and Clay magnificently swiped the ball away, coiling behind Tait and sending a bluesman free. Off into the area, along the bye-line with Tait trailing and wailing. A little lift over Jamie Mack and lumpy Sampson stood on the burning deck and tapped into the empty net.

Ah. They started the show without us.

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, Grimsby Town Football Club have arrived in the building. A corner cleared, dinked back and Clay flicked up, up and away. Jalal arced and parked our bus. That's us. In total. Wakey wakey, Toto.

Rusty Robertson seized up and off a bluesman twanged. A smattering of smothering monochrome.

With about five minutes left Clay was hauled off for being the worst of a bad bunch of nanas. Jennings arrived. And so to bed. 4-4-2. Stability and mobility; now we just need some ability.

Second half: Time of the season

Neither team made any changes at half time.

Someone's put a rocket in their pockets, and boots in their suits. Running around and things. Arnold pestered, Arnold fizzer-crossed, Arnold nearly through the blue blanket of mirth. Arnold Arnolded and Amond sprinkled lowly. A shot, a save, no need to rave. Have you got rants in your pants?

A blue break, a pink boot. We shall not meet again until the clouds part and the fourth floodlight fails.

A pink punter, a rinky-dink punter, and the one and only truly original demon barber of Park Street mugged a Maccboot and cartooned through

A pink punter, a rinky-dink punter, and the one and only truly original Oirishmen from head to toe thighed down. Bogle toggled teasingly and Nolan slapped through the dross. Listen lads, we can still do this!

A pink punter, a rinky-dink punter, and the one and only truly original demon barber of Park Street mugged a Maccboot and cartooned through. Jaunty Jalal jumped on our beans. Is this it? Time, space, a goal agape. How Dizzerpointing to disappear into a sinkhole.

What's that, Sooty? The linesman is a sinkhole? How rude.

Nowhere nothingness in the soupy drains of Cheshire. The ball wellied long and long and long. Gitboy Styche, the previously unseen secret squirrel, trundled Maccawards. Calm down dear, he's years offside. Toto waited for the flag that never came, McKeown sauntered, and Styche mumbled on, wasting just a little more time lifting over Jamie Mac and air-kissing towards his inflatable admirers. Don't worry, he wasn't so much offside as off-piste in the grouse season without a fishing licence.

Look, there's the flag. Oh, a white flag.

Omar wallflowered nifty Nathan behind the full-back. Shwan swam out to rescue their plucky little dog. Bogle pinned his carnation and crinkled lowly through the six-yard box. And when he tried to get through, on the telephone to two Townites lurking, there was nobody home.

And so, just as Omar was finally rolling into Town, Hurst unhitched his wagon and sent on Hoooooban. What followed was just nonsense. Nonsense, nonsense as Town demanned in defence. The Bluesmen even had a breakaway where they reached the promised land. Whittaker waltzed and Whitehead wellied agin the post.

Five minutes were added. And how do we salvage the sunken schooner? Off came Tait as Pearson put on a wig and pretended to be Mike Lyons. Hit the big man! The big man weaved down the wing, espied the unmarked Nolan and rolled a perfect pass… the perfect shot kissed the post as it shivered the timbers of the billboards behind.

It's all over now, nothing more to say. Just our tears and the orchestra playing as the ship of fools slides beneath the waves. Hobbled by hubris and mugged again by the Macc Lads.