"As for Maidenhead, the conga (which was amusing) aside, quite a strange bunch really – some the oddest chants I've ever heard at a football match" ~ localboy86, Amber Planet forum, 26th April 2015

Wednesday 23 November 2011

Away Day Diary: Aldershot Town 2-0 Maidenhead United (22/11/11)

Maidenhead United's 12th visit to the Wreck and, despite being housed at the uncovered end for our last visit (an unfortunate 2-1 defeat under John Dreyer in the 2004/05 FA Cup, with Jamie Cook scoring a cracker), plus the fact that I'd enjoyed three or four pints of Kronenbourg in the Crimea and the La Fontaine before kick-off, Steve H and I didn't need a sign to direct us to the away section on the East Bank. I was actually quite excited ...

A shame, then, that the match was something of an anti-climax, with Maidenhead well beaten, if not disgraced, on the night. Playing the rather cumbersome - and the unfit/ injured - Ashan Holgate, up front on his own, didn't help. Nor did picking Nevin Saroya - less than a week after telling him to go and get some game-time elsewhere - to replace Leigh Henry, whose other half had gone into labour. Neither was it a good idea to gift the low-on-confidence and below-average Division Four side two soft goals within the first 30 mins or so. The match was over as a contest before the break.

As such, it was 'make your own fun' time. So, after photos with MUFC Hall of Famer Andy Smith ("Who needs Cantona when we've got Andy Smith"), and a soon-to-be-hastily-discarded MUSA membership application form handed to me, the singing began in earnest.

Coincidentally, as our vocal cords loosened, so did Drax's attacking inhibitions: Super Manny Williams would make a belated appearance around the hour mark. Maidenhead, resplendent in their Farnborough-like away kit, had a couple of chances near the end - notably a well-saved Will Hendry free-kick - while Sam Beasant made some decent stops to keep the score-line respectable.

A large chunk of the songbook was reeled out (no thanks to "Thistle's number three"), with a fake goal celebration mingled with compositions both old:

  • "Soggy Sombrero" 
  • "Whitley Bay/Oh Logic pulled" 
  • "A group of blokes from Marlow went to Rome to see the Pope" 
  • "OlĂ©! Der Super Maidenhead" 

And new:

  • "Are you Rasher in a wig" (to a steward with a full head of hair, pestering the youth)
  • "How shit must you be, Weston/ Dover/ Eastleigh/ Sutton/ Welling/ Dorchester/ Tonbridge scored four?!"
  • "You're going to Hillsborough. You're going to Hillsborough. We're not. We're not"
  • "We're going Southern League!" 

Indeed Macleod (M) was, in the end, left to rue only two missed songs:

  • "Bring on the Tottenham and the Arsenal ... " 
  • "He's Johnson Hippolyte - he does what he wants!" 

A prolonged, thunderous rendition of "Black and White Army," as time wound down, preceded a passionate burst of "We love you Maidenhead, we do," at the final whistle and drowned out the annoying Aldershot drum. A steward (who had been smiling throughout the second half ... and joining in with some of the singing?!) remarked to me on exit - using language that Cloughie would disapprove of ... if it were us using it, rather than someone whom the MUSA secretary had given a lift - that we were, in his experience, the "funniest ... and most musical supporters we've had here". Eh?!

A couple of posts on ShotsTalk, however, provide the best summaries:

"2,181......with 261 from Maidenhead......their team may not have shown up - but at least they have - fair play" 

"Fair play to the 261 Magpies fans who came last night...they did their best to make the atmosphere and did their team proud with their singing - especially the last 15 - 20 minutes"

This FA Cup run is done and dusted, then. The dream is over. Hillsborough will have to wait ... for at least another 140 years, if Maidenhead's FA Cup record is anything to go by!). However, Drax and the players deserve credit for the Woking win and the home draw with Aldershot. Respect, too, for those supporters who endured the arduous (!) midweek trip to Hampshire and made themselves heard throughout the game. Here's hoping that we spend the Cup windfall wisely ...

Anyway, time to concentrate on the Trophy ...

We're playing Billericay Town at Fortress York Road this coming Saturday, and they're top of the Ryman Premier after a 5-0 win at H*rsham

The League, then ...

W0 D2 L8 in our last ten games. Two points from a possible 30.

The Berks & Bucks?!

Abingdon United are gonna get a beat down! :-)


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