As a throng of CPR alarm clocks rang through the state of New York, one man lay in defiance. One man turned his head over and said NO, today is not the day. One man in seeing his lie in slipping away like sand through his fingers embraced his indiscretion, pulled the warm covers back over his head, put his cell on mute, and enveloped in slumber where only the weak-willed dare to lie. That man’s name…?
Prelude: Let me take you back a week and to the aftermath of our Cup match penalty loss. Under the skeptical eye of Ms. P; Joe ‘Stepover’ P boldly claimed that had he been tasked with dispatching one of the nine CPR penalties, then CPR would be sat proudly in round 2. A daring claim, and one which unfortunately for The Stepover, left a lingering question unanswered in many of the listening minds…
And so to Randal’s Island! With no balls to warm up with and more hangovers on display than a Bradley Cooper film, it was once again left to Sgt. Brindley (who on evidence wears a hangover with the same elegance a horse wears a toupee) to lead the team on a merry dance across the field. Vodka, IPA, and Bourbon Iced Tea wafted across the hallowed turf as Stower took gleeful delight in goading those whose only breakfast had consisted of four crushed Advils throughout the subdued drill. The reluctance stretched right the way through to the management as Becker held out until just two minutes before kick-off before finally changing into Legends goalkeeper kit. It bears no small coincidence that in his reluctance to don the tangerine shirt, Becker could mistake a 4 foot Mexican from 60 yards for our 6’5 keeper. Twice.
The match finally got underway as the Old Boys eased into action. Steve ‘Jagger’ Morse (kudos to those who get the reference – sorry Steve-O, get well soon!), donned his Ron Atkinson trench coat and set to wringing the tactics from the touchline. In support was the Dogmatic Chris Williams, barking orders and enforcing the instructions. The pitch was about 3cm larger than the CPR Home pitch but how those 3cm make a difference. As the team adjusted to the greater space the Old Boys gradually took control of the passing. On the tenth minute a CPR corner was knocked away to the edge of the box where Engler teed up a thunderous volley, and smashed the ball home with aplomb. The opposition barely had time to adjust when Sawyer tucked in no.2, before putting a header down to Creighton who calmly tucked the ball home as if ice ran freely through his veins. Williams then introduced himself into the foray and Old Boys found themselves at halftime four to the good with no reply, as Williams’ cross into the area was accidentally steered into his own net by the Manhattan Celtic center back.
“DESTROY THEIR SOULS”
He may have the haircut of Skeletor, well he now has the dictionary. These three words will forever sit like a beacon in the memory of all those fortunate enough grace the field this day (obviously not you Dan Penrod… have I mentioned Dan didn’t turn up?). Destroy. Their. Souls.
Gone was the team that entered the arena, as the CPR eleven that took to the field for the second half stood tall and proud, men before the boys of only 45 minutes before. The half started at a frantic pace as the Old Boys pushed to sink more goals in their favor. The Stepover had clearly packed his bag of tricks as time and time again he shimmied and turned, danced and pirouetted, held the ball like a feather and had the opposition chasing shadows with the slightest drop of a shoulder. The CPR subs could do little but applaud and watch in admiration.
It wasn’t long before Jens ‘Von Goalhammer’ Faulhaber chased through a ball and smashed home goal no.5 past the goalkeeper at the near post. The right wing was having the better of things with the Jones/Ault/Engler combination moving the ball well up through to the strikers, whilst the rotation of Kass/Edmunds/Clarke held sure at the back.
Celtic rallied and pressed and for long periods but the CPR defense closed down well. The larger pitch took its toll and the subs rang with increased frequency as Morse looked to enforce momentum.
Credit must go to the referee for the second week running. Despite missing a blatant penalty and then handing out a dubious yellow card (the author bore close witness to both moments and say with a complete unbiased certainty that the referee was wrong on both occasions. And so it was written…) the referee made amends by finally awarding CPR the penalty that their previous play had deserved.
Cue the lingering unanswered question…
As Joe ‘The Stepover’ P’s penalty sailed WELL wide of the goalmouth, a wry smile came to all those fortunate enough to witness this moment of footballing magic. Not often does football, soccer, or any other broadly supported sport return such epic moments of smugness, yet this one will be cherished for years to come. The referees whistle blew moments after and at with a 5-0 scoreline to take back to the newly furbished Central Bar clubhouse, a rapturous entourage (minus Dan Penrod) made its way home to sample the new – and clearly watered down – Central Bar IPA.
By David Sawyer