Introducing: Brystal Palace
Join The Tab every Monday as we follow the fortunes of hot new prospects ‘Brystal Palace’ in their intra-mural league campaign.
Brystal Palace 4-2 Geographers
Defence: Talki Talkington, Charles Case, Harry Zundel, Henry Wilson, Huxley Ogilvy.
Midfield: Jake Rogers, Jamie Budgett, Dave Ratcliffe, Andy Quaile, Max Connolly.
Strikeforce: Declan Grady, Jamie Robertson-Macleod, Ollie Feather.
Last week, the season began poorly, with a frustrating loss to Churchill A. After the match, Gaffer Declan Grady put the loss down to the area’s temperate climate with many of the players still getting used to breezy Bristol after a summer spent at the Barcelona youth camp.
Therefore, this week was a must win game for the Palace. The Geography team was full of stalwarts (rocks you might say) of intra-mural league football but The Palace backed their fresh talent.
The first 20 minutes were spent analysing opposite numbers and getting a feel for the frankly overgrown Pitch 10. Palace’s stylish football undeniably suited better quality pitches. Both teams showed glimpses of attacking promise and with so many through balls, it was only a matter of time before the deadlock was broken.
The breakthrough eventually went to Brystal Palace after Andy Quaile dispossessed one lackadaisical defender before rounding another and coolly slotting the ball in the bottom right.
Roars of ‘let’s have another then Palace’ reverberated around the Downs. At half time Palace’s captain (Ollie Feather) declared, “I want another; we should be miles ahead by now”.
Max Connolly answered this request within minutes of the second half with a brilliant finish from a seemingly impossible angle.
The game was far from over however, as Palace’s usually rock-solid back four fell victim to complacency and failed to prevent an incisive through ball from finding its mark. The Geographer’s striker latched onto this with relish and beat the keeper top-right.
Spurred on by this sniff at glory, the attacks came thick and fast and an unfortunate mis-communication between keeper and defender resulted in an own goal. This was the first time centre-backs Wilson and Ogilvy had conceded in over thirty matches together, and their disappointment was palpable.
At this point, Gaffer turned to the side-lines and sent on Charles Case (subbed off for a cigarette break) to bolster the defence. After a more settled passage of play in which Palace regained their dominance, they were rewarded with a free kick 40 yards out. Jake Rogers stepped up and whipped a great ball in.
Both strikers (Feather and Robertson-Macleod) executed a well-rehearsed set piece and flummoxed the keeper by both missing the ball, allowing the ball to dribble into the goal.
As the last 10 minutes were signalled, Palace stepped it up a notch, refusing to settle for 3-2. The Geographers too continued to look menacing in midfield but never managed to find that killer pass.
In the dying seconds Jamie Budgett (who had run a marathon on the right wing) skilfully intercepted a stray pass and slid it across the 18 yard box to the feet of Robertson-Macleod who smashed it past the keeper from two yards out.
All in all the game was a great spectacle and a real tribute to the determination of the boys in blue (t-shirts).
However, the Geographers did put in a great performance and showed Palace which areas need work. Gaffer assured the team that as soon as the shirts arrived, they’d be breezing through games like that.
This week’s MOTM: Harry Zundel. A true rock in defence, making countless vital tackles whilst always offering an attacking option.
Until next week: COME ON THE PALACE!!!