The goal spree continued back this time at Brighton Uni as 12 goals hit the net in an 8-4 victory for Bibs.
Before the game Greenwood was concerned that Skins were the likely victors with many of the defeated team last week staying on the same team.
The game started fairly evenly and the pattern was that Skins would enjoy possession and Bibs would look to hit on the break.
The first goal came from a breakaway with Brenchley returning upfront finding Ridley who shot well on the run for 1-0.
Bibs were looking well organised and their midfield 4 were generally on top in the first half.
Eason made it 2-0 with a goal as Jason said was out of the 1995 copy book. He first took the ball past Hussain then dragged backed past Edwards before finishing past Tricker.
Not long after he made it 3-0 when Brenchley played him in and this time it wasn't the drag back but the trusty old toe punt again past Tricker for 3-0. Skins were reeling and a few cross words were starting to be muttered. Edwards was trying to get his team back in the game but his efforts were either blocked or just missed the target.
Curry tried a back heel on the back post but didn't get a good enough connection as Skins tried in vain to answer back.
Bibs were carving open the Skins defence at will with some good counter attacking. Green in particular was busting a gut to get beyond the Brenchley. It was Brenchley himself that scored the 4th and the best of the night with a superb volley which found the bottom corner.
Just before half time the Hat made it five and celebrated with his customary forward roll.
Bibs had played some good stuff first half and were ruthless in their finishing.
Skins looked more settled second half and Tricker with a good finish made it 5-1.
No sooner had they got a sniff, Greenwood at the other end made it 6-1 with a calm side foot finish.
Brench in the Bibs goal made a number of important saves and when he was beaten his old drinking pal Mitchell was on hand to clear off the line.
Hussain from a corner made it 6-2 before Matt Green and The Hat again made it 8-2.
Skins kept pushing and Bibs were getting sloppy. Curry done his golden boot chances no harm at all finishing for 8-3 before Baker smashed home from close range to finish the scoring at 8-4.
MOTM - Mark Brenchley - A strong all-round performance from the front man. Goal, assists and saves gave him the Utterly Butterly MOTM medallion.
After last weeks drab 0-0 it took the green, green grass of Waterhall to bring out the best in F&O goal scorers. The first grass game since a 4-4 classic at Wish Park on the 19th September 2017 both teams were keen to kick off to avoid the darkness.
Skins were all too happy to kick off with the Sandwich Man arriving late and they enjoyed a comfortable first ten minutes, stroking the ball around but not really testing the Bibs keeper.
With Chaz back on the pitch the game was far more even but out of nowhere Hunt capitalised on a under hit Ridley pass and he finished well for 1-0 to Skins.
An almost immediate response saw Edwards score past Greenwood and it took a good save from the KoW to deny Edwards a second soon after. Bibs were now creating the better chances and Curry lurking on the back post scored from an Edwards cross.
Still in the first half Greenwood crossed and Prosser inadvertently finished past his own keeper for 2-2.
Curry leading the way in the goal scoring charts scored his second for 3-2 and that was the half time score.
The game changed just after the second half when Brench scored his first of the game and then he played in a quick free kick for Greenwood to slot home and the game had turned on it's head for 4-3 to Skins.
Within 90 seconds Tricker finished well first time after a quick corner from Ridley for 4-4.
It was the key goal of the game as Bibs superior fitness took over.
Curry with a great finish completed his hatrick and then it was left to the unpredictable Colombian to deliver the final two blows. In between his strikes Brenchley grabbed his second. 7-5 with only a couple of minutes to go. Skins kept pressing and a late flurry of corners saw chances go begging for both Hunt and Brenchley who missed the target with headers.
MOTM - John Curry - Back out in the lead on the scoring charts with a match winning hatrick.
It had to happen one day and after 4 years and one week we finally had a goal less draw.
I had a brief conversation with Matt Green before kick off. “Has anyone dropped out I can play now” said the young 28 year old. “Afraid not but you could come along and watch it should be a good game and there could be an injury”. Replied the older cousin.
Young Matt Green dodged a bullet here as there were no goals and no injuries and I can only imagine what a painful experience it would have been to watch as it was painful enough to play in.
The early stages I’ve mainly blanked from my memory such was the paucity of quality on show. I recall two golden opportunities for the returning Tricker who fired over and wide after being played through.
The midfield battle was competitive with both sides going through an enormous amount of work and both protecting their back two’s well.
The congested midfield meant most shots were from range and there was barely a save either end in a gritty first half.
The second half was more open with a similar pattern to the first. Skins would keep the ball better, but the best chances fell to Bibs.
Beebee had a good chance in the early stages of the second half but he blazed over, electing to take first time when there was time and space for a touch.
A little later Eason turned like Beardsley but shot like Ableet as he fizzed a volley high on the turn. Not too long later a second diving header in two weeks was attempted, this time from an Edwards cross but his header went wide.
Further long range shots from Nyle, Chaz & Greenwood didn’t really threaten the goal. And the Bibs midfield of Ridley, Eason, Prosser, Edwards & Beebee were doing a great job of throwing themselves in the way of shots as they and Wilson & Mitchell made numerous blocks.
The best chance for Skins came when Baker got to the bye-line he crossed and a combination of Wilson in Mitchell managed to smother Hat as he lurked on the back post.
The closest any side came to a goal is when an Edwards effort deflected against the inside of the post across the line for Luis in goal to collect.
In the final stages Tricker went rampaging through but a combination of tiredness and heavy legs meant his effort was collected easily by the keeper.
The second half had more incident but it was far from a classic as both sides miss out on a win.
Phil now has a 37% draw rate!
MOTM – Kev Virgo – Didn’t put a foot wrong tonight. First to everything and distribution was spot on. He even made a save from my shot late on.
In the hottest Summer since 76 (Pete was a youthful 10 year old back then) F&O players are sweating off the pounds ready for the naked Christmas calendar for 2019.
Sunglasses and water were the biggest requirement on match day as a setting sun gave Skins major problems with vision in the first half. It was hard for Skins to get their passing game going with the blinding sun and some excellent pressing from Bibs.
Bibs were definitely pressing in the early stages and they were well on top. After a few early efforts one of which from Edwards rattled the post via a slight but important deflection , it was the midfield dynamo who opened the scoring, lashing home, bottom corner.
Bibs continued to play the better football and twinkle toes Luis was bamboozling the Skins defence with a full array of step overs and drag backs.
Brench and Greenwood were trying to get the game going for Skins but Chaz & Edwards were pressing intelligently and many moves were breaking down.
Out of nowhere Brench found space, centre field and a slow over lap from Eason was cut out by Ridley but the lanky midfielder put in a block challenge and the ball richoted in off his foot into the bottom corner for 1-1 against the run of play.
Skins looked threatening every time they went forward but some really poor defending gifted Bibs their second when Chaz finished well after numerous missed attempts to clear.
Again the lead didn’t last too long and Greenwood with his 16th of the campaign made it 2-2. Skins scarcely deserved parity but it looked like ending that way in the first half.
Bibs were able to mount one last attack with Edwards making it 3-2 as we went into half-time.
Skins felt with the sun woes behind them they would get back into the game but in truth it was a poor second half performance from them as Bibs dominated and could have won by a hatful.
An early penalty after Baker had assaulted Curry in the box, gave Curry the chance to reassert his lead at the top of the scoring charts. However the big frame of Bahrami got his right thigh to the ball and it went wide for a corner. He made a second better save from Edwards not long after this time his left foot deflecting a goal bound effort out.
Edwards was the driving force for Bibs and he made it 4-2 as the bibs pressure told.
At the other end Beebee had a few presentable opportunities but couldn’t hit the target. One came from an indecisive throw out from John the Hat.
When Edwards netted his 4th and Bibs 5th it was game over and Baker struggling with injury decided to take out Luis after the Colombian tried one step over too many.
Skins misery was complete when Brenchley put in a great cross for Greenwood but his effort was well saved by Wilson and then Bahrami skyed the rebound over the fence.
MOTM – Jac Edwards – One of the great F&O performances after a barren spell in terms of victories and no goals up to this point, this season.
There was controversy galore as well as yet another injury at the Uni tonight but at least a 4th draw in a row was avoided as Bibs took the spoils in another fine game.
With teams being changed twice in the build-up and some inexperience helping out, any result was possible.
Skins were definitely shading the first half by playing some neat passing in midfield and they had the games outstanding player in Southwell who ran the show for the first half hour. The only problem for Carl was that his finishing deserted him and he wasted a number of decent chances.
Controversy number one was when Bahrami shot and Greenwood flying in from point blank stopped the ball with his hand. There was a load appeal but play was waved on with Greenwood too close to be penalised.
Controversy number two was when Skins forced a corner and Mitchell using the old pro's trick of holding onto the ball as once again his team were playing a 3-0-4 formation. Southwell took the ball and looked up, he found Bahrami with a quick corner but the ball was the best part of two feet away from the quadrant and therefore the set piece had to be retaken.
Chaz, Southwell and Bahrami were linking up well and generally forcing the pace.
At the other end the Hat somehow missed an open goal from a yard when King Luis crossed.
It looked like 0-0 at half time but then against the run of play Bibs scored. Barnaby making his first appearance of the year miscued a clearance and Eason trying to prevent a corner played the ball back into the danger area and Greenwood finished sublimely to make it 1-0.
Hussain searching for his first win had a couple of decent runs but his shot just went wide of the post on two occasions.
During the Bibs resurgence Skins had lost Southwell to a hamstring injury and were temporarily reduced to 7 men.
Half time 1-0 to Bibs and Greenwood in a fine display of sportsmanship cajoled his team into leaving a player off and swapping every five minutes.
The second started and both teams had moments of dominance but when Greenwood finished first time past Bahrami into the bottom corner the game looked over and Skins with no rotation were looking tired and ragged.
Bibs were now missing chances with alarming regularity and Skins were now riding their luck to stay in the game. Out of nowhere Ridley halved arrears when his shot went in past John the Hat for 2-1. Skins were buoyed by this and continued to press, although they were leaving themselves more and more exposed at the back.
With 15 minutes to go two world collided as Brenchley looking for a give and go ran full pelt at Dallinger who fell down like a ginger sack of shit. Every single rubber pellet on the pitch jumped a good 12 inches in the air and the ground shook with Dallinger laying stricken on the floor heavily winded. The game was stopped as the big man struggled to his feet. Like a warrior he upped his game and work rate and was playing with a renewed vigour in search of the equaliser.
In the end time ran out for Skins but they had acquitted themselves well after losing their one galactico player.
MOTM - Jason Mitchell a 3rd summer MOTM for the ivorian Derek Mountfield who just held of two goal Greenwood by 6 votes to 5.
There has been a rare summer drought this year and there has been a drought of sorts for F&O victories in July as for the third match in succession, two teams battled to deadlock at Brighton Uni.
Before the game Adam Dallinger in his reporting capacity for SAT1 felt Bibs were big favourites as they carried the threat of Edwards, Brench and also golden boot contender Curry who heads this seasons goal scoring charts.
Skins were clearly motivated by this and they made a good start to the game, having decent spells of pressure. Bibs themselves tried to get into passing mode but they overplayed at the back with Brenchley and Matt Green gifting an opportunity for Eason to score a rare left footed goal past Curry for 1-0 with barely five minutes on the clock.
Could it be a high scoring affair? As within a minute Edwards rampaged down the right and his inviting cross was smashed in by Green on the run from 5 yards.
Whitey who had just conceded in goal was now on pitch and the midfield workhorse was on hand to make it 2-1 with a stretch and close range finish. Unfortunately for him though the stretch made his hamstring go pop and that was the last action he saw on the pitch as the brave warrior from Portslade went in goal for the final 55 minutes.
Skins continued to play the better football and Greenwood had a fine long range shot hit the outside of the post after Lamprell got a slight block in.
It was 2-1 at half time and Bibs were probably relieved to get in at the break just the one goal down.
There was always a risk with an injured keeper and no replacements on pitch that Skins would tire. The Hat who had an incredible first half, was one of the first to tire as he begun to run out of pitch a couple of times when in a good position.
The second half brought an immediate response from Bibs and it was top scorer Curry who was released by Brenchley down the left, his shot took a slight deflection of Baker and into the top corner for 2-2 with the best part of half hour remaining. The second half was much more even and chances were shared.
Brenchley had two golden opportunities but surprisingly missed the target each time. At the other end Beebee forced two decent saves for unrenowned keepers Lamprell & Wilson.
Virgo was having a great battle with Edwards and the game was hotting up nicely. Edwards hit the outside of the post from a difficult angle and Eason repeated the same feat from an identical position from the other end.
Skins were getting in decent positions but they were clearing the fence far too often. At the other end the stricken White was target practice for Bibs but they weren't hitting the target too often and when they did with a Brenchley flicked header from a corner, White was on hand with a fine reflex save.
2-2 at the final whistle and another great game.
MOTM - Kev Virgo - An outstanding display from the defender. Made several fine challenges and kept the Bibs danger men quiet for the most part.
The warning signs of a draw were there before the game. Firstly draws tend to come in two’s, secondly Phil was playing and thirdly Brench predicted a draw based on the 8 aside teams. With Dallinger & Youngman making it up to 9 we kicked off just after 7:30 after a minor pitch invasion when a tournament liked the idea of holding up F&O.
The goals were moved back and Kev marked the pitch giving Rich his ‘wet dream’ of a good length. Rich so turned on by the width would go on to score two a feat which nearly earned him MOTM.
Bibs started extremely well and were soon well in control. Patient build up and good movement from Tricker & The Hat upfront were causing untold problems for Skins who were reliant on Mitchell & Green getting them out of jail a few times.
The first goal came from an unlikely source. No not Curry this season’s top scorer but the penalty spot. Mitchell was adjudged to have fouled Curry in the box as both went up for headers. Mitchell pleaded his innocence, but the feeling amongst the majority was that the Ivorian stopper had gone through his man to compete for the ball. Curry picked himself up and drilled high into the roof past Greenwood who got a slight hand on the ball but couldn’t stop.
Bibs were now rampant and a goal of the season contender followed as Chaz & Southwell combined brilliantly with the former sandwich maker, teeing up Carl to drill home into the roof for 2-0. Bibs were brimming with confidence whilst Skins were in turmoil as Green departed his defensive duties with Ridley moving to the back.
Surprisingly the 3rd goal of the game went to Skins as for the first time they played some good football in the Bibs half and Lamprell finished from a tight angle through Virgo in goal.
Skins may have thought half time 2-1 great let’s get back in the changing room and get things sorted but a long range effort from the Hat went in past Ridley for 3-1. Bibs continued to press and forced numerous corners but 3-1 at half time was a fair reflection on the first half.
Skins came out much improved after the break with Lamprell, Beebee & Greenwood starting to dictate terms more in midfield. Bibs cause wasn’t helped when Tricker with a shimmy and turn hurt his side and spent the next 10 minutes in goal until he had to conceded defeat and leave the pitch to a standing ovation from the Bibs fans packed away at the Amex side of the pitch.
The numerical advantage for Skins seemed to spur them on and Bibs were dropping deeper and deeper with only Curry has an out ball. Lamprell made it 3-2 when a cross went straight in as Mitchell may have unsighted Hat in goal. Skins were on the charge and it took some good defending from the back 3 and a few slices of luck to keep the lead.
At the other end a rare foray into enemy territory for Bibs saw Prosser make a fine save from a Chaz header.
The equiliser came as Lamprell with two bites of the cherry saw his 2nd shot deflect in off Greenwood for 3-3. Still around 20 minutes left and Skins were now looking the likely winners.
Southwell now injured as well made a series of decent stop as the pressure ensued. Youngman was also a casualty as the pace of the game was taking its toll and he spent the final 15 in goal with a hamstring pull.
Bibs pushed back were making it difficult, although they were almost architects of their own down fall when first Wilson tried a back header but this was read and Southwell was out to smother. Moments later Virgo tried a risky back hill about 3 yards from his own goal but somehow Bibs got away with this and cleared their lines.
9pm and the whistle was blown for a 3-3 thriller.
MOTM – Carl Southwell – A great first half performance on the pitch and then a fine 20 minute goal keeping masterclass, reminiscent of a young Bobby Mimms.
After last week’s 6 aside it was a case of fitting everyone in as we stretched the pitch to accommodate 18 F&O players with 1,664 caps between them. There was also 128 caps of official as Brenchley took the whistle as he continues his recovery from a bad back and now a hamstring strain.
With a lot of pre-match discussion revolving around the old famous ‘lack of balance’ it seemed somewhat inevitable the match would be tight. And that it was as we witnessed an attritional match, between two competitive sides played in a good spirit.
Skins started the better and seemed to be getting a grip in the midfield, again against the general jist of the pre-match comments. The 9 aside also meant tactics were important with Bibs playing two at the back and packing the midfield with Skins opting for a back three.
The very first opportunity of the match fell to Andy Beebee who smashed the ball over the fence and almost into the houses behind the goal. At the other end Ridley was running the channels and Chaz was having a strong first half as Skins become more and more of an attacking force.
The first goal came from a corner which Bibs failed to clear. Wilson with one final attempt to hack found his clearance hit Eason’s slide challenge and the ball went straight in past Tricker in goal.
Skins were now playing some nice football and midfield quartet of Lamprell, Sandwich, Eason & Southwell were keeping the ball well.
Southwell almost scored a wonder goal when he pulled the ball out of the air beat his man but some good goal keeping denied him.
Ridley with half of East Brighton to himself raced clear, but the 51.5 year old veteran took about 20% of his life time to attempt a shot. In that time Hunt done well to get a challenge in. Queue disgust from Ridley who was angry none of the younger members of the team made him aware of the incoming challenge.
At the other end the much maligned keeper Rich Lamprell pulled off two wonder saves. First from Dallinger with a near spectacular own goal and then a miraculous save from Beebee as he pushed the ball over the bar with the ball already behind him.
Just before half time Bibs managed to get on level terms as for the first time Skins defensive shape was lacking. Greenwood nipped in at the back post to fire home and 1-1 at half time.
Straight back into the second half and the game continued to be end to end with both teams showing great desire and commitment. Bibs were now starting to get more of a hold in the midfield with Curry his usual industrious self as he stretched the play by starting slightly wider right.
Wilson was a threat from the back as Skins were now giving ground and his long range pings were both accurate and dangerous. A Wilson cross hit the post and then a big scramble ensued as Skins through a mixture of brave defending and good keeping, kept the score line level.
Southwell showed his fine keeping skills by denying a Bibs attacker as they went through 1-1.
Skins weren’t offering a huge amount going forward until Eason AKA ‘The white Mark Walters’ decided to run Mitchell down the left. I’m not sure who was more surprised Jason or Eason’s team mates as when he got in a left foot cross on the bye-line there was little in the way of support.
With the clock running down the 9pm players took to the field with 3 minutes of play remaining. The early finish probably benefited Skins who were holding on slightly towards the end.
MOTM – Tom Green – Nothing got past the pacey defender as he marshalled the back line well and consistently thwarted Bibs attacks.
On a rare Friday night match to avoid clashing with the ultimately pointless Belgium game it was left to F&O to bring some early blood and thunder football action to the weekend.
With more pull outs then a Catholic couple we were left with just 12 players and a debut for Darren Borozan a friend of Jac Edwards.
With the pitch brought in it was a good size for 6 aside although a 7th player would have been ideal. The weather too meant fitness would be a key, especially as the game stretched out in the second half.
The first half was a relatively even affair with both teams patient and creating reasonable chances. Southwell and Gil were linking nicely for Skins, whilst Bibs had Bahrami as their focal point. It was the Iranian centre forward who set up the opening goal, crossing for debutant Borozan who finished well. Moments later Darren the debutant hit the post as Bibs looked to go into the break with a two goal lead.
It was as good as it got for bibs as Skins dominated much of the second half.
Whitey on a run from the right hand side into middle of the pitch seemed to pass the ball towards goal. Fortunately for Neil the ball trickled in past Bahrami as the Iranian keeper claimed he was unsighted. The ball was timed as entering the net at 3.2 MPH.
Skins very quickly killed the game off, although Edwards did hit a post and somehow Tom Green missed on the goal line but attacking moments for bibs were few and far between.
Curry with 3 goals and Gil with 1 killed the game for 5-1 and the Curry hatrick means he goes clear at the top of the goalscoring charts with 14 for the season.
He can find himself as a bit unlucky not to take a MOTM award too, but in truth all of the Skins team played well with Baker in particular impressing the MOTM panel with some good defending and passing.
MOTM - Nik Baker - Enjoying a nice run of form of late, let's hope his Saturday team duties don't impact his appearances with F&O.
On what was the longest day of the year, it would have been the longest 22 minutes of the season for Bibs as first they finally cracked, then finally succumbed to a late Skins onslaught on a hot summers evening.
A combination of heat and setting sun meant the first half was pretty much nondescript for the most part. Hunt hit the top of the bar after a good header from a corner. Virgo had a penalty appeal controversially turned down after a challenge in the area. At the other end Greenwood right on the stroke of half-time curled just wide from 10 yards when well placed.
0-0 at half time and barely a shot on target in the first 44 minutes. With only 3 keeper changes remaining a first ever 0-0 draw was far from out of the equation as both teams kept a good defensive shape, but offered very little going forward.
That changed when first young Luis Gil had a glorious chance one on one but his shot was saved very well by Hunt.
Lamprell minutes later scored the opening goal and a very good goal it was to as he raced forward from his deep lying midfield position to finish into the bottom corner.
The game opened up at this stage but it was Bibs who looked most likely to double their lead. Matt Green having a couple of chances where he elected to shoot first time when he perhaps had an opportunity to take a touch to get closer to the goal.
Ridley who was working hard beat Wilson and the onrushing keeper but his right foot hooked volley just missed the back post.
Hunt was playing well in midfield as well as goal and a slide rule pass played in Tricker who his return but the attack was snuffed out by some good defending.
It looked like a frustrating night for Skins but Luis's perseverance paid off after first looking like the chance had gone and he finished powerfully past Virgo with 20 minutes left.
For the first time in the match Bibs looked ragged and several mis or non communication in the back line resulted in further chances as Skins turned the screw.
Bahrami had a shot saved and Greenwood on an extraordinary run of wins smashed home the rebound for his 11th of the season to take him joint level for the golden boot.
Bibs were now a spent force and Curry tapped home after more confusion. Virgo then made several fine stops in goal to prevent an avalanche of goals. Wilson went forward and his shot went across the goal line only for Luis to net his second and Skins 4th to round of the scoring for 4-1.
Bibs were now pleading for the final whistle with the game over. They were finally put out of their misery just before 9pm.
MOTM - Greenwood - top of the win percentages, top of the MOTM's and joint top of the goal scorers could this be a season to remember as we near the halfway mark of the season.
In other news after much discussion the F&O committee members made the decision to raised the qualifying limit to 30 games.
A spokesperson for F&O said afterwards. After 190 great F&O games since records begun we feel the time is right to move the qualifying mark to 30 games which represents 15.78% of matches. We understand our German tv broadcasters RTL & Sat 1 will be disappointed by this news but F&O is a global phenomenon which must preserve it's integrity and ethics.