Deck the halls with looping volleys…..

Stuart McCall, Wembley 1989. FA Cup Final. The first of his two that day was a great dipper of a volley. I’m sure he shinned it though.

Scholes at Bradford was as technically perfect as it gets (is there a ginger volley gene?). That one of Shearer’s against Everton which looked like a cross but you knew it wasn’t. Gullit, Van Basten, Di Canio, Sinclair. Name a few of your own, heck, maybe we’ll get some videos of them!

The majestic nature of the volley sets it apart from all other types of goals. It is the selfish indulgence of a single player choosing to finish in one of the very most difficult fashions possible. Most of the time it is a wild abhoration, flying closer to the banks of empty seats way off toward the upper tier, the corner flag, or the 3rd team pitch.

But, from time to time they connect. You know that moment, when the foot barely seems to register the impact. Timed so sweetly as to evoke memories of that perfect note, a poetic sip of wine, the long courted kiss. The path of the ball so unerring as it sets off to the exact coordinates you swung for. Interwoven, the timing of the foot is matched in all parts of the body, as the balance that brought about this stunning menage-a-deux brings you to a graceful halt. Now, imagine being able to do that 8 times out of 10. There, but for the inherent skill of Zidane, go you and I my friend. But would he pull it out in December at Accy Stanley?

And so, we approach the festive season once more. Our forum hosts its own ‘Bah Humbug’ thread attracting those who love and those who hate all that is Christmas and the New Year. Sometimes, both in the same comment….

“I like it, but I can’t stand Christmas shopping. I put a Christmas playlist on Napster last Friday during the day because it was our Work Christmas Party, and sat there winging (sic) about how shit most of it was, but then I quite enjoyed that” (DAF)

What of the football? I was really looking forward to the begining of the real festive football programme (i.e once half term has started) but soon changed my mind after the debacle of Palace vs. Birmingham. Crikey, that was shocking. Then we saw dirty Blackburn against Dirty Bolton. Nowt to do with the football, just the places are both shitholes! But does Keane deserve the sympathy being dished out to him?

For my money you take stick wherever you are. The ONLY reason any of them get the sort of money they do is because the supporters, whether match goers, shirt wearers, website subscribers or whatever, pay their money to BRFC. So they should be allowed to say what they feel. Obviously if it becomes criminal language (i.e it upsets poor, mild mannered shrinking violet PE) then that is a different matter. Otherwise accept it Steve. To be fair, if they are calling him shit after the lack of wins he’s had I’d say they were simply quoting proven fact! Anyone else got an opinion on this?


For me, the festive plethora of football offers much the same as the Christmas dinner. You spend ages building up to it, go in all guns blazing, realise your sick of it about half way through but to hell with it, I’m finishing off those spuds (wish someone would) because it’s tradition! I’m booking some tickets for the FA Cup R3 at Anfield, only because tickets are around 20 quid. Might even pop in on PNE Boxing Day or New Years day. After all, it’s traditional, isn’t it? Who else is popping out to see men in gloves and tights this yuletide? (No, not the panto!)

Enjoy your Christmas, the next blog will be with you somewhere between the big day and the big hangover!