Seeing over 100 games in 2012 means we have seen a few corkers. And what better way to finish our 12 Days of Christmas than with our best three 90 minutes. Well, in fact two of the three were only 45 minute games technically but made up want to stand up and cry “We love this beautiful game”. Two of our favourites were international games, which was very surprising, and our winner only had two goals in, just to prove it is not always about the number of goals but the passion, drama and incident in the rest of the game.
So, thank you dear readers for coming with us on the past twelve days as we have waxed lyrical about all that was good (and bad) about our footballing adventure in 2012. Same time, same place next year? Oh go on then.
3rd Place – Boston Town 4 Loughborough University 3
Boston who? You might say but United Counties Premier League sides Boston Town and Loughborough served up an absolute feast back in September. I only arrived at half-time after watching the more famous Boston (United) play but the 22 players were obviously waiting for my arrival before putting on the real show. The visitors were 2-0 when I made my appearance, and by the sound of it were running away with the game. ”Bloody students…when you want them to be hungover from last night they bloody turn up looking like whippets” a local told me when I asked what the score was. Over the next twenty minutes the score went 1-2, 1-3 and then 2-3 with just a minute to go. The away keeper who had been in fine form then had a 90 seconds to forget. First he let a simple shot squirm under his body and then with the last kick of the game Boston took the lead for the first time in the game when he was beaten with ease at his far post. Just a shame there was only 55 people there to see it along with me.
2nd Place – England 2 Netherland 3
An England game? Are you mad? Good old London Underground did their best to ruin the evening by delaying every possible route to Wembley and we didn’t get into the stadium until well into the first half but fortunately all the action was reserved for the final 33 minutes. The Dutch showed their sheer class with three outstanding goals, whilst the English showed some true grit. This was supposed to be the game that welcomed ‘Appy ‘Arry but a week is a long time in football, whilst a minute can sometimes be even longer as we saw in the 90th minute of this game when Ashley Young equalised for England then with the very next attack Robben curled an absolute peach into the top corner. If all England games at Wembley were half as exciting they would be sold out every time.
Best game in 2012 – Egypt 1 New Zealand 1
Olympic football in Manchester wasn’t supposed to get the general public on the edge of their seats, but the 60,000 who witnessed this warm up game to Brazil v Belarus on a sunny, but bloody cold day in late July saw one of the best games of football in decades. Sure, there was only two goals but it simply was end to end action for 90 minutes. Both, yet neither team deserved to win due to their attacking intent and last gasp defending. Both keepers were heroes and to a man we all rose to applaud their efforts when they finished doing battle after an hour and a half. Brazil may have been billed as the stars, but the extras but on an Oscar performance.