Game 1, 2018-19
All through Friday night's game I had 'Someone Out There' by Rae Morris going through my head, but it should really have been a much uglier song, by Eels. So instead of hearing a recurrent, "Someone out there loves yoooooo" through 90 minutes, I'd have been mentally singing to myself, "I'm tired of the old shit/Let the new shit begin."
|Rae contends that someone out|
there loves a referee. Somewhere.
It's a 'friendly' game between a level 8 men's team and the U19 squad of the city's third largest club. The lads are a step quicker and smarter than the men, and so the latter - who are knackered after 30 minutes - resort to fouling, and then moaning at me when I call them out. The game becomes fractious and there are already three yellow cards before half-time - one for dissent, and two for unsporting behaviour when two players square up to each other and refuse my suggestion to kiss and make up. So far, so predictable.
There are two archetypal incidents for football at this level. First, the U19 team score their second goal just before half-time on a through-pass. The men's team shout as one for offside, except for their number 99, who has been too slow to move up (possibly weighed down by his number). I shout "Play on!" and point at the number 99. When the goal has been scored, several players on the men's