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Upminster Blue

Feb 12, 2004
Another evening at Layer Road to live long in the memory! A well deserved win with justice finally done although it didn't look as though it would be for a long time due to the incompetent ref.

With a half decent ref we would have costed to a 2-0 win which would have been about right. The free kick that led to the equaliser was never a free kick in a month of Sunday's. Edwards was tracking the forward near the corner flag - the linesman just five yards away doesn't give anything, the Col U fans make a half hearted appeal and the next thing you know the ref belatedly gives a free kick despite being a long way from the play.

We're then denied a nailed on penalty late on in normal time when Pettefer is brought down in the box. And as for Bentley's sending off, what a joke. The Col U play comes sliding in late on Bentley and misses the ball by a big margin. Bentley does well to avoid injury by jumping the challenge. A free kick to the Blues and a booking for the Col U player is the near unanomous reaction in the away end. We and Bentley couldn't believe he was sent off and I can't see how he stamped on the Col U player, certainly not with any premediation - he didn't have time to. Hopefully his red card wil be overturned - he'll be a huge loss if not.

Enough of the poor ref (although in the end it did make the victory even more enjoyable). We played some great passing football, had by far the best chances (Gower and Gray hitting the post, Bentley missing a great headed chance in injury time at the end of the 90 mins). Bramble's goal was a cracker - an exorcet of a shot from 20 yards which the keeper didn't see. The defence were rock solid, Maher ran the show in midfield and was a class above the Col U midfield. Gray had his best game yet although nothing quite came off for him. Flahavan had little to do with Col U's only real threat being from set pieces.

Overall we looked a quality team that more than matched Col U. If we keep performing at this level, we'll be looking good for the play offs at least (famous last words).

As for the penalties, the ghost of the Anglo Italian and Notts County in 1993 has finally been exorcised. Amazing considering our record from the spot! The faces on the inbreds faces as they trudged out while we celebrated was priceless. Even Ron Martinn joined in, coming over to the Blues fans with a big grin on his face - well done Ron.

Roll on Darlington!