Hard times are over

Cod Almighty | Match Report

by Tony Butcher

2 February 2020

Grimsby Town 2 Forest Green Rovers 2

Hello there eco-people, playing your trombones in the Osmond. Welcome to the future that is the past. We are the Sky TV Condemnation Affiliates. God save Tudor houses, antique tables and billiards. Is now the time to break out the black polo neck of contrition, John? You can tell us what condition your contrition is in through the medium of memes if you wish.

Oh the wind, the wind, the warm winter wind that howled straight down into the faces of the 76 Village People, those citizens of the world who eat their greens. Whatever happened to winter? White smoke drifting from an open fire? Ah, there's a new Pope at 27 Blundell Avenue, a new Ring of the Fisherman has been forged.

Town lined up in the usual 4-3-3 formation as follows: McKeown, Hendrie, Pollock, Öhman, Glennon, Clifton, Benson, Whitehouse, Vernam, Hanson, Clarke. The substitutes were Russell, Hewitt, Waterfall, Buckley, Wright, Tilley and Green. So who now will put the hassle in the Hessless Town? Benson for Beds has opened a new store, right in the heart of the Town midfield.

The Hughie Green Appreciation Society turned up disguised as green tigers, with our old favourite, Conrad Blimp, in goal. One day their green bubble will burst, as will Mr Creosote.

Well, we're here now, so we may as well crack on with the Ollie show.

First half: join the dots

The green teatotallers kicked off towards the Pontoon. Oolong can we go with tea-based punnery? Sorry, I am a coffee drinker. I drinks it all of the day, ooh arrh, ooh arrh ay, ooh arrh, ooh arrh ay.

Infiltrations, deliberations and March arrived late in early February. Hendrie really must eat his greens and not push them to the side of his plate and hope no-one notices.

Tapping, tipping and Glennon nipping out of defence for a perambulation along the prom-prom-prom. Alas the pass skipped along the muddery, mumbling and bumbling away from Slim Charles.

The wind. The wind.

Pollock flat pinged and the baldy Greenster waheyed wibbly and a Clarke drooper dropped delightfully where the buffalo roam. But no Town forwards.

A homeopathic hint of Vernamary, a wisp of Whitehousian wobbling. Öhman overhit a back pass, McKeown sliced, and a greenite fried some seaweed. These are mere moments of almost nothingness in a sea of green, a sea of green, a sea of green.

And the band begins to play.

The Village People were so macho, wallying way down the touchline, pinning Town back into the corner with a defensive throw-in in the badlands beyond the Police Box. A throw-in nowhere near anywhere.

Tap, tap, tap at the window, to me, to you, just send it along from me to you. To be, to be or not to be? Tap it, unwrap it, 14 golden passes in Holloway's chocolate orange of delight.

Oh such beauty in black and white, a monochrome magnificence, such sensuous stripey slinkyball and not one green bug-eyed monster touched the crown jewels as Town gnawed at their innards.

Hendrie to Benson to Pollock to Benson to McKeown to Pollock to Benson to Öhman to Clarke to spin to Hanson to Whitehouse to Vernam to Glennon to cross to Clarke to nick to Vernam to slap beyond the blimp.
Swanking stripes, free-flowing, free-falling, the sirens calling: ole, ole, ole, ole!

Green piddling under the shadow of the Frozen Horsequorn Stand. Bailey, with twin ravens on his shoulders, wandered infield from their right, took a touch and whackerooned a zinging pinger that flew straight as an arrow into the top left corner past waving purple fingers.


Unstoppable, undeniable, unforgettable: that's what you are Odin.

Mesmerised by dreamcatchers, Town shriveled and the Friendless Green Rovers trampled all over our crocuses.

Glennon disappeared as Bailey flew. Jamie Mack parried the low fizzer straight into the path of Aitchison. The goal agape, the town aghast, the shot was cleared for take-off by air traffic control at Kirmo. A corner fizzed beyond from their left, Hendrie ducked under his man, and McKeown excellently finger-flicked over from under the bar.

Mariner moments, here and there, dying in the breeze. Glennon intercepted, Hanson flighted, Vernam almost delighted. A goal kick. Let's have an ooh.

Them, a shot or two. Way over, wayly over, and definitely not Wavy Gravy in the navy. Them. Well, we say them, we mean Bailey, roasting Glennon like a Christmas chestnut.

Two minutes were added to our lives for no reason whatsoever.

Monochrome oozing and schmoozing into the Bailey Bazooka, then fell into a stupor. It should have been worse, it should have been better. We should have known better.

Second half: wind power

Neither team made any changes at half time.

Beware the eco warriors' use of wind power.

Piffling puddles of peripheral prancing in the middle of nowhere. Clarke outmanoeuvred, outpaced by the hirsute centre-back who roamed the earth like Cain, going from here to there, having adventures. As the concertina contracted, a simple straight pass was placed inside the sleeping Glennon's corridor of uncertainty. Aitchison ambled on and scruffed a scribbler across the aching McKeown, over his static right boot and drumbling into the bottom right corner of the net just inside the post. Perfectly placed, perfectly preventable. Perfectly encapsulating why Glennon isn't a fourth division full-back: he's a footballer playing at full-back.

Yeah, but he’s better than Gibson.

Slumping, lumping and we'll be grumping?

Nooo, this is new, weird, attacking Town with passes and things. The thing is they pass. And move. Let's do the Hollyhop, a step to the left, a pass to the right, as Town did the timewarp back to the days of our past.
It's so dreamy, oh fantasy free me! McKeown to Öhman to Hendrie to Whitehouse to Clarke to Vernam to Clifton to cross for Hanson to glance and Glennon to poke in from inside the six-yard box. It's as easy as ABC, as simple as do-re-mi.

And Tilley replaced Little Harry.

Pretty patterns in the kaleidoscope. Turn, turn and turn again. Dave Worthington, it's still just clouds in our coffee. Minutes passed by. Town passed for minutes on end as more minutes passed by. Clarke and Whitehouse mugged stray green beans. Whitehouse skipped away down the left and a big green chest chested back to Conrad Blimp. For the merest fraction of a microsecond we had a vision of a comedy own goal. Typical vegans, no sense of humour.

Town changed to a 4-2-3-1 formation with Tilley the centre of the three. He was far less weakly invisible away from the wing.

The throw-in, Piddle paddle, scrabble, chip beyond the far post. Hendrie ran away from Hall and big blocks of cheese saved our onions. Or bacon. Should have been something, wasn't. We're happy, hope you're happy too.

Tilley tickled and The Wolds Panther ran into the wind, wigging and waggling and wafting slicily into the singing ringing tree corner. We're happy, we know they are unhappy too.

Near the T-junction at the left corner of their penalty area Tilley was bumped from behind, successfully claiming on his insurance. Clarke's coiler was caught by Logan and he rolled the ball along the face of crossbar, before rolling out the rolling thunder tour of the east. Winchester, who'd stood there and watched, left Town behind, strolling onwards.

Oh Glennon, you could've done something, we know you tried. You almost did something, but Bailey walked by, wrapping you into a sausage roll as Hall shot against Jamie Mack's shins. I think we need a Hall monitor.

With about seven or eight minutes left Green and Wright replaced Whitehouse and Hanson. At last some Green on green action!

Err, nope. Nothing.

Three minutes added. Err, nope. Nothing. Forget about the Wright tumble and ear bellowing by the defenders. It was nothing of nothing. He slipped, they just gave him some lip, and he ignored them. So should we.

Town had the ball, they had the chances. Both sides looked perfectly adequate with obvious flaws on the edges. All four goals were excellently constructed in their own way. Both sides relied on borrowed boys for some oomph. It's a sad thing baby, but at the moment we're two peas in a pod.

It was a pleasantly entertaining exhibition of football.