This match took a long time to come together. After originally being scheduled for round 10 and being postponed due to the rain it was then re-arranged for a Wednesday night. Waverley didn't fancy it that night for whatever reason and in legendary Barnstoneworth sportsmanship we decided to play the game rather than takes the points outright.
After quite simply a disaster of a season for the AA2 Barnie team you may have been forgiven for thinking there was absolutely nothing to play for but for pride, and so it proved. With five minutes to go until kickoff there was still no referee and the nets weren't up. Both teams agreed to referee a half each and up stepped club man Ian 'Duck' Rogers to take charge of the first half. It was safe to say that there would be a lot of "advantage" played in the first half.
It was a windy night and the game got off to a frantic start with not too many chances being made by either side in the opening quarter of an hour. But the Barnie midfield generals of Stevie (Should be playing for Hibees) Mac and our own Hero Nakamura soon took charge and really started to impose themselves on the game. Chances soon came along thick and fast but it took Barnie a while to even hit the target. It was from a set piece where we should have opened the scoring, a great corner came over to the back post with Damo connecting with a cracking right foot volley which the goalkeeper would surely had no chance of saving. However, big Stu was on hand to nod over the top to safety. Shouts from the side were politely asking the big man if he was taking the golden boot competition a little too seriously.
Within minutes Shaun who had suffered some dust in his eye during the warm-up bravely came on to his now natural left back position. It was with some great work down the left and a great switched cross ball over to Damo, having switched from left back to right midfield, who beat the keeper on the 2nd time of asking to give Barnstoneworth a well deserved lead. 1-0 BUFC.
Both wide players for Barnie were now getting a bit more space while Hero and Stevie continued to pass the ball around well while also winning the physical battle. The 2nd goal was soon to come with great work from Steve and Hero and then Damo with a great ball to Harry who had his shot blocked. Fortunately Stu was first to react and coolly side-footed to the top bag with a glorious finish, one hand on the golden boot already. 2-0 BUFC.
Waverley who had already secured their spot in the finals seemed to get a wake up call from that. Although having previously looked decent on the counter they hadn't really created any clear cut chances. From a corner some slack marking from Barnie allowed the Waverley centre-half to head a good effort on goal which was well saved by Gaffo. Unfortunately, Shaun forgot which way we were shooting and headed into the roof of the net-no chance for the Gaffman but on a brighter note two in two games for big Shaun. 2-1 BUFC.
With a shout from one of the Waverley players of "these are sh**e" this was all Barnie needed to lift their game again and the next minute opening up the Waverley midfield again and a pile driver by Sparks left the keeper with no chance as the ball crashed into the back of the net. A similar shout to Waverley may have been mentioned... 3-1 BUFC.
The scoring wasn't over for the half with another corner causing havoc which somehow came to an unmarked and surprised Wyton who smashed a shot from point blank range to make it 4-1 right on the stroke halftime. A great way to go into the break with the bearded man most likely not going to let anyone forgot about it for a wee while. With lack of incident Duckman may have found a new career in refereeing. 4-1 BUFC at the break.
More of the same was hoped for the second period for Barnie and it got off to the best possible start with some great work down the left. The cross found young Niall showing those twinkle toes of his once again and skinning the keeper twice then calmly slotting home.
It was plain sailing from then on in with some lovely passing through the midfield over the course of the 2nd half and a few great chances for Barnie. No more goals until the final minute where Big Stu found Ben 'The Italian Poodel' Jedi through on goal who made no mistake giving the keeper no chance with a great strike hitting the inside of the post and in. 6-1 BUFC it finished with Barnstoneworth worthy winners. Oh what could have been if that result had come a couple of months earlier.
With Sydney Uni up next in the final game of the season Barnstoneworth are looking to finish the season on a high with back to back victories and something to take forward into next season.