This is the crises I knew had to come
Destroying the balance
Doubting and settling and turning around
Wondering what will come next
Saturday 15th August I’m half way up a Welsh mountain after two hours of mind numbing slog through streams, woods, mud and more cow crap than you could possibly imagine.My legs are shredded, it’s misty, it’s raining and I have my mobile phone switched on to keep me informed of any developments at Lancaster City where Cables start their season. As cruel fate would have it the second half at Lancaster starts just as the final gruelling, mountainous three miles of the race creep up on me. After an hour of no news (no news being good news) the texts start coming thick and fast.
“1 down,2 down,3 down,4 down.5 down”
Each score flash has the same effect as someone sticking a ten pound barbell in an imaginary backpack slung over my shoulders. On the surface it’s typical Cables circa 2007/2009- hold out for 45 minutes then crumble like a digestive dunked in too many steaming cups of tea.I’m not really sure if I can take another season like the last one and I’m half considering starting the world’s first refuge for psychologically abused football fans in Prescot. On balance I think I prefer the cow crap and aching legs to watching another spectacular Cables implosion.
Cables v Trafford
I was assured by several Cables fans that the drubbing at Lancaster wasn’t quite as bad as some of the hammerings last season.Which is something of a relief although I don’t think the league table takes into account these trivial matters. Tonight’s opponents Trafford got their season underway with a 5-1 spanking of Salford City-that’s all we need.Cables are unveiling their new kit, a timely event as last season’s shirts were worn at Lancaster and the shirts seemed to come with last year’s lumpen mojo.
15 minutes into an edgy affair Trafford’s Metcalf all but bursts the Cables’ net with a howitzer from out on the left wing.The normal procedure at this point is for Cables to concede several other goals in fairly quick succession but Cables show an encouraging amount of resilience.Big Josh Mitten sets up Ray and Riley to test the Trafford keeper and the Cables defence keep the Trafford forwards at bay.
Trafford, it must be said, seem to have broken into the local pharmacy before the game and taken the whole year’s supply of ‘Nark pills’ .Some tasty tackles and even tastier comments are flying around the pitch with John Riley being a favourite target of the visitor’s.
It’s in the second half when the Cables side at last manage to convince the fans that better times may lay ahead.Sayer and Fleury link up several times down the right to slice through the retreating Trafford defence.And Ray, who had looked a bit of a luxury in the first half, is finding a promising amount of space on the left.
With Josh Mitten limping off injured Cables go for broke by bringing on forwards Phil Green and Darren Connell. Green instantly gets involved with a Trafford player and the ref has to try and sort out who it was who verbally threatened to break whos’ jaw. Green, angry and motivated, is tripped in the area to hand Cables a lifeline from the spot.Darren Connells’ penalty lacks direction and pace allowing the Trafford keeper to palm the ball away.
A minute later it seems Cables fate is confirmed as Dale Wright slams an effort against the inside of a Trafford post and the ball bounces inside the six yard box and is cleared.Rob McIntosh and Ray also go close before Craig Fleury curls a left foot effort just wide.
With time running out Ray is set free inside the Trafford area with time and space to draw the Keeper before firing an angled drive high into the Trafford goal for the equaliser.It’s stirring stuff. Cables watchers are more used to seeing Cables hanging on for a point not taking the game to the opposition.Such is the enthusiasm the five added minutes are greeted by cheers from the home fans.Eventually time ebbs away leaving Cables with a precious point and the sort of performance we haven’t seen for a long time at Hope Street..