So the next destination on the SLD1C sat nav was the picturesque surroundings of Burt Reynolds field. After trawling the cashpoints of Farnborough for any that were actually working (5th time lucky!!) we'd eventually pitch up to second base with minutes to spare thanks to the further joint thwarting efforts of the M's 3,25 & 40. The sun was out, we'd 4 away wins on the bounce, I had a new pair of pants on and Hanwell were averagely mid-table. If that's not a recipe for an away day bonanza, I don't know what is.
A soiree into the bar to quickly offload some urine and gain some refreshment took an interesting turn as frequenting their Victorian school house bar was none other then half man half horse 'Boro legend amongst men Chris "Disco Pants" Boothe. Wish we could see more 'Old boys' at the games, appeals to us more nostalgic soppy bollocks types. Quite how the hell he looks the same age, as us, even though he must have about 15 years on us... is more of a mystery then Mrs Browns Boys.
You didn't need telling that it was a Boro die-hards procession as the noise coming from behind one of the goals was the familiar ranting of mass PREportions. A quick tweet to announce our arrival and it was time for the opening pitch... which looked VERY dry, dusty and bobbly. Combined with the abrasive breeze, it had all the right parts for an absolute non-league barnstorming goal-fest.
Team news... following Gillette-gate last week and the subsequent ostracising of Eddie, the eagle had flown. With that in mind Spencer clearly wasn't taking any prisoners and it was a 3 pronged attack from the off.
Take the game to them and win it early was clearly the order of the Day. That said, nobody told any of the players this as we found ourselves generally struggling to get a foothold in the game for the first 20 mins. Lots of hoof ball, loose passes and the like didn't suggest this was going to be one for the footballing connoisseurs among us. We were just about shading the territory and possession when the Hanwellians gained a soft free kick (yes, another one!) about 35 yards from "René's" ballbag. Their player stepped up and swung in a pearl of a delivery, slicing the defence up like a battenburg, and ,managing to land the bounce in no mans land, left René between the proverbial rock and hard place. He opted to hold his dive anticipating a touch but, much like a shrivelled up group of appendages, none came and the ball sailed into the ball bag. Shit the bed. 0-1
We needed a reaction and, praise be to the God of David Leworthy, we didn't have to wait long. The reaction came quicker then "Clinton's" at a gang bang offering free pizza. We won a free kick about 25 yards out and "Fogle" flicked on 'accidental Beckham' yet again blasting one at the Mintmeister in the homer's ball bag. He could but palm it down as it's sheer wrath got the better of his subconscious and who else was there to pounce but Perry "The Hoffen" Coles. On the score sheet yet again, his delight only matched by the collective relief of the travelling Boro hordes. 1-1
If the game had been the opening hours of an elephant calf's life, we were moving to the bit where the junior dumbo had staggered to it's feet and realised it's surroundings were there to be explored, the beast was hungry. Boro were pressing like a rogue Corby sweatshop and had the Hanwellians on the ropes. Movement, passing and composure ensued as we wound up the coil and prepared to move to light speed. It was a sweeping move right through the heart of the defence which lead to the completion of project 'game-on-it's-head' a few minutes later. "The Hoffen" and "Butcher" laid on their Chuckle Brother skit (to me, to you) sending the centre backs into early retirement and a snapshot from the latter nestled almost evangelically into the corner.
SCENES SCENES SCENES 2-1
No Time to waste as, smelling blood, Boro shifted up another gear. "Castrol" was given more space and time then a Doctor Who convention and crafted an incisive pass, finding "Butcher" who unleashed one of his award winning bangers into the ball bag giving the Mintmeister no chance. From nowhere we were suddenly borderline home and
away dry. 3-1
Apparently he was on fire.... lucky we've got "the Fire Engine" I guess.
Quality told, like a tale telling snitch. HT 3-1
A switch to the other end for the second half and it was clear that the sea breeze was increasing in it's ferocity.
Into the second half and Hanwellawella had obviously been given a dressing down from their management as a few of them came out with fire in their eyes. Unfortunately for them there wasn't enough room in this game for 2 narratives on fire so, a few minutes after "Clintons" was booked for having his foot kicked, Boro earned a corner after some neat "Clintons"/"The Hoffen" interplay down the left.... "Castrol" meandered down and fired in his corner unload and the ball seemed to catch everyone out, bouncing up and a crafty "Butcher's" hook saw the striker complete his raid. 4-1
There was a lot of talk on social media about how he was some kind of Paul Mersonary figure for what happened with his departure from Fleet. We don't really understand what they meant, but if he's going to come in with that hunger and desire... we'll take it thank you very much. And to that wazuk who called him a "blunt instrument" on the message board this week... Get down to specsavers, there's a 2 for 1 deal on.
Soon after the completion of the trick of hats, "Butcher" was pulled off like a horny teenager and replaced by "GoalDen" and the hero obviously received a standing ovation from the travelling hordes.... principally because we were all standing anyway, but you know what I mean. As he found his place on the bench, the loving look from Spencer's eyes was a beautiful thing.... Now get that account opened at Cherrywood eh Patrick?!!!
"Castrol" was booked as the game fragmented. A couple of the home players seemed to not be happy at the pasting they were getting and resorted to some Neanderthal tactics. Understandably frustrated at the lack of opportunities that were coming their way. I won't bang on about the rest of the half too much. "The Hoffen" could well have had one or two, coming close like a blind gigolo delivering a facial. "Fogle" had another free kick effort which didn't trouble the Mintmeister. "The Salmon" and "Clintons" also having pops which were ultimately unsuccessful.
"Clintons" was withdrawn late on as frankly he'd put in enough of a shift dealing with their number 2's constant moaning. Number 2 very apt.
"The Goat" came on and, in a moment that I thought really illustrated the developed togetherness of our current squadron, was chopped down by the now hot-headed number 10. At this point the collective disgust of the side turned them all into a load of over protective big brothers. Equally distributing themselves between checking on the lad, berating the ref and having it out with the chopper downerer. I don't know if anybody else noticed, but it warmed the cockles. Great work lads, great work.
There was still time for the same party to receive his second yellow for another silly tackle and he was given his marching orders. ("#RegTheLedge" was on by this point so probably could have given him some tips on said marching.) Shame really as I thought he was their standout player.
"GoalDen" could have put the cherry on the top in stoppage time but sprayed his load over the cross stick.
Oh, big shout out for stitched up Boro number 1 Aaron "the Slayer" Bufton who joined the singing behind the goal. There's nothing better then a Boro player showing his total and unrelenting efforts for the greater cause. We really hope to see him back between the sticks before long.
Anyways, 4-1... That's your lot. 5 away wins on the bounce!!! Stick that in your pipe and smoke it. The heat was on in the car even though it was 15 degrees outside &, more importantly, my new pants remained unsoiled. Epic afternoon.