Friday, January 22, 2010

Even the facking lino' had tights on!!

When you think of Spain what comes readily to mind, gorgeous ladies? San Miguel? the European cafe-culture, sun, sangria and some humpty on the beach? Well, for most of the year nearly all these things are freely available, although, there is a bird in my local Dia supermarket with an amazing arse but a face like Rowan Atkinson. Right now though we're in the middle of the period when a little bit of nookie outside is probably not a smart idea and if you decided to risk it you'd need some protection for your fingers too, gloves! Unfortunately, and unlike the poofters in Germany and Sweden, football in Spain doesn't have a mid-season break, this means those who take part expect people to come and watch it.

So it was on the Costa Blanca's coldest day since about 1973 that Santa Pola headed off to San Vicente to take on Preferente strugglers Jove Español. It's probably just me but on those kind of occasions 'Pola always end up playing away at the bleakest and most windswept grounds imagineable. In the above photo, concentrate not on the football action, but the six or seven people huddled together next to the bar. These are in fact, random strangers who had never previously met, but, through necessity, chose to share body warmth to ward off the clear and present danger from hypothermia. I don't think the icy wind and freezing cold temperature agreed with the home side because they were absolutely crap, they eventually lost 0-1, but really, they should ought to have been at least four or five goals worse off.

Santa Pola full back Dani notched the only score and it was quite a good one, usually when defenders get forward and have a shot the ball ends up in the adjacent postcode, not this time. Our hero started and finshed the move, leaving the grunt work in the middle to midfielder Emilio and centre forward Mario Fernandez, who set him up with a deft flicked header into space. From just inside the box, Danny Boy slapped in a lobbed shot someone like Glenn Hoddle or CR9 would have been quite proud to claim ownership of and in the process grab all three points for the visitors.

As luck wouldn't have it, the goal occurred fairly early on in the first half so everyone present had to hang around at Ice Station Zebra for at least another hour. The half time interval didn't really help either, normally it's an opportunity to grab a coffee, not to drink mind you because nine times out of ten it tastes horrible, but to wrap my fingers around to thaw them out. This time the mid match beverage was served up in something only an Action Man could have made use of, so no help there then.

It was one of those games where only the really hard men choose the short sleeved shirt and most of the players wore gloves, as did the referee, for sure John Barnes from years gone by would have feigned injury.
Talking of match officials, the ref's assistant running the line on the dug-out side of the pitch did well to make do without any gloves but rather ruined his macho image by sporting a natty line in black tights. Presumably he did ask the missus before rummaging around in her smalls drawer.

PHOTOS; Top - some strangers becoming acquainted
                  Middle - Dan the man
                  Bottom - the cross-dressing assistant referee

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