London Calling

Cod Almighty | Match Report

by Tony Butcher

12 September 2019

Grimsby Town 0 Macclefield Town 0 (Grimsby Town win on penalties)

So Chelsea's calling to these faraway towns as last week's phony Bteamboycottcup mania has bitten the dust. Ah, but we live by the river on a surprisingly temperate evening with 44 Silkmen lounging louchely in the covered corner.

Town lined up in the a la mode 4-3-3 formation as follows: McKeown, Hendrie, Öhman, Pollock, Gibson, Whitehouse, Hessenthaler, Robson, Green, Hanson and Ogbu. The substitutes were Russell, Ring, Hewitt, Vernam, Wright, Cardwell, Rose. Do you believe in Robson Green? Shouldn't we get Cameron Jerome back? Left footers on the left, right footers on the right, chips over both shoulders for Moses to run onto - Town life in karmic cosmic balance.

Macclesfield? Their kit is pleasingly plain, it's about time they were slain as they are normally a right pain. Their left-back has hair like the Predator, but at least we can see him in the scintillatingly sizzling shining spotlights.

What? No minute's silence to support the Imps at the time of their sad loss? Well, it seems to me that they have seen too much in too few years and though they've tried they just can't hide, their eyes are edged with tears.

How hard our hearts are towards our county cousins in their emotional trauma.

First half: Predator v Alliums

The Macc Lads kicked off towards the emptiness, the void, the vast redness of unsatupon plastic. Is there anybody out there?

Is there anybody out there?

Pinging passes, a Whitehouse dragger. If you squint there's a hint of an extra strong mint as little Harris barrelled straightly low at Jamie Mac. Blue ticks, blue tocks, Townites standing aside and admiring the clocks. Archibold archly arcing around the absentees on Town's left, Georgia O'Keefe painting the sunset on their right.
Maccaboys drifting and wafting, coiling and curling wide right, high left, high right, wide left. Town a befuddlement on the flanks, Archieboy coiled just over and wide, The Predator pranced down their right and McKeown clutched and spooned a low draggle across the face of goal.

We want a Town that's right but the right is only half of what's wrong. They're a cut-price Crewe, Town are an old brown shoe.

Town may appear to be imperfect but Moses isn't the defect. Norris the Rubberman twizzled through blue, Green's shot was blocked. A moment. And here's another. Ogbu surged and splurged out right, Hanson tippy-toed a flat crack and Ogbu volley-poked straight into the midriff of Evans the Keeper.

And we're back to the sub-optimal grime. Predator boy galloped gaily and walloped highly.

Pollock poleaxed Macc with a long whack straight down the middle. Green swizzled and swirled to swamp a bedraggler across the face of goal and wide, wide, wide right.

Them, them, them turning and tossing and tossing and turning all night. All night, all night long. Wide left, wide right, trolling Town, rolling, curling, swirling, twirling and, finally, the Predator surged past the aching Gibson. Osadebe skilfully sidestepped the ball to avoid scoring. Nice.

Macc were not quite Crewe but Town were still Town. They kept missing, Town almost had a moment. Once.

Second half: The Wright stuff

Neither team made any changes at half time.

From the off it's up and at 'em Town. Oomph with oof, fizz with whizz and pace with grace. Hanson and Ogbu exchanged glances, Whitehouse dippy-walleyed from the D. Green surged onto a timid blue tapping sending Ogbu through on the left. Moses manipulated a coil around Evans towards the far corner. Kelleher threw himself lowly, his gentleman's particulars blocking the ball along the line, his gentleman's right boot swiping the ball away from the line.

Intense and in the Blue half incessantly. The Hess was booked for some trifling leg up and on the hour Robson was replaced by Maximum Wright, with Town moving to a 4-4-2 formation. Robson: an interesting academic exercise. Hopefully he will realise football isn't just about kicking the ball nicely.

So where were you for the greatest goal never scored at Blundell Park?

Pressure, pressure, balls and pressure. Wright tumbled when confronted by bad breath and jumped back up to harry the hassler who hoiked down the touchline. The Hess tidied up on the half way line and flicked to Wright, just infield, just inside the Town half. Wright simply surged, swaying past one, zooming past two, flailed a third, mailed a letter, shimmied away from a fourth, stepped inside a fifth and Evans the Keeper kept his cool to swoop-block as Maximum Wright shot from five yards out.

He could have passed to Green and Hanson, unmarked to his side, but come on... did Maradona ever pass?

More Town, only Town. This is Town, this is relentless Town. Winger winging, Green slinging arrows, Whitehouse crossed deeply, Hanson arose and noddled onto the roof of net.

Long wellies, short wellies, welling Town boots. A big hump fell off a blue male, Maximum Wright tickled and Whitehouse's swishing swerver swayed across the face of the bottom right post.

With quarter of an hour left Macclesfield had a short excursion to the seaside, cocky Archibold swung his pants and lamped longly around and about. The word on the streets? Pfft.

Battered and blasted, Blue men flabbergasted. Hanson flicked on and Green, beyond the sea, under-piffled with the outside of his right boot. Deep in the deep right, the Hess low slapped a free kick, Pollock's near post swipe deflected over blue for a corner, a corner, and another corner. Out and out, in and out, Hanson hooked over.

Three minutes were added and the Blueboys decided to be cheeky with a long plop and an Ironside head flop. In the fourth minute of the three added, Jolley played his aces. Town replaced Öhman and Pollock with Cardwell and Hewitt. They did something too, but frankly my dear, who gives a damn.

And so to penalties in front of the Pontoon.


Green swiped right, Evans plunged left. Noooo! McKeown pointed right, dived left and Ironside did what he was told. No! Big Jim Big Jimmed right as Evans outthought himself the other way. Yes! Little Horsfall passed gently against McKeown's shins. Woo-hoo!

Where are we now? 1-1

Ah, Big Harry. Ah-ha, Big Harry winkled lowly left. Annoying Archibold aimed left and hit the spot. 2-2

Ogbu? Cool man, real cool. But so was Gnahoua. Yeah, here comes the Hess who won't make a mess. He does impress us much. Evans the Keeper up next, coolly rolling right as Jamie Mack sank west. 4-4

Right we need a man of steel, so up stepped a Sheffielder. Whitehouse crafted around the keeper's flying fingers in to the right hand side.

McKeown danced in the moonlight on a long warm summer night. Kirby crumbled as Jamie Mack tumbled left to paw and claw aside, then men came screaming towards him in black and white coats. So we do want to go to Chelsea after all.