Images and captions kindly supplied by the young David Evans
A chilly afternoon downwind of the rather aromatic Minworth Sewage Works at Romulus FCs Castle Vale ground punished the Walsall Wood faithful yesterday (25th January 2020) as their lads were hammered 3-0 on the astroturf.
David Evans was there, and sent the above images and the following report:
Romulus FC 3 v 0 Walsall Wood FC
Saturday 25th January 2020
The inimitable thrills of driving from Walsall Wood along the merry A452 to the modern motte and bailey Spitfire Traffic island is not totally dissimilar to the unrivalled pleasure of a gentle drive through the back lanes of Lower Stonnall, mucky lanes, stuck behind a tired old tractor. The pace is painfully slow in both instances.
Amazingly unscathed and yet with teeth set on edge, I arrived at Chateau Romulus. A fine edifice, to be sure, set among scented glades, and nearby carp ponds. [Ah yes, downwind from Minworth Sewage Works – Bob] Matchday programmes, a localised manly snip at only £2 each, were bought with entrance tickets and the scene was set for a thrilling game of ten pin skittle soccer played on synthetic grass.
The first third of the match is best characterised as fast, accurate passing by both sides, with the visitors perhaps having an edge over the home side. Both sides had solid defences which repelled all approaching threats by opponents. It would be unkind to call this stalemate soccer as there was positive endeavour here.
A seemingly disallowed goal by the visitors may have been a moment where the balance, fine though it was, began to gently slip away from The Wood. Romulus were coming back from attacks with lightning breakaway speed, catching the Woodmen cold.
Half time, cucumber sandwiches and Earl Grey served by the managers for their broods; Castle Vale beef burger with plenty of necessary red sauce for the rapidly freezing spectators. A time to stomp feet and thump gloved hands. This, and a cup of piping hot tea with loads of sugar is what sport is all about, isn’t it?
The second half, as so often, brought fresh moves and manouvres, espcially by the home side who gained two shock goals within a few minutes. Ouch blinking ouch.
The visitors were dumbstruck. Their moves were becoming predictable; the home side were far more inventive in their play. The Wood faced a mighty uphill struggle to get back in the game. They battled and struggled, ran like red noses in winter, kicked hard like stallions feeling the blacksmith’s searing irons, leapt high like River-dancers on Herbal sweets, but, it was not to be their day. Not today, by the thunderous M6 motorway and the carp ponds.
To pour salt on the wound a back header by a Wood defender went straight over the keeper and into the net. The final whistle came, mercifully, and ardent fans were brought back from the brink of imminent low core body temperature.
The Wood’s lack of competitive games on synthetic grass helped the home side gain their well-deserved win today. The journey back to home for me was a miserable one with little to be joyful, other than comparing today’s game with the events of the mid-week’s ‘Find the Ref in the Fog’ game last Tuesday.
That is another story.
Thanks to David there – For The Good Of The Wood!
Walsall Wood Football Club are a top local side and last season’s league runners up with a big-hearted faithful who know how to have a great time supporting their lads, and welcome all comers to come enjoy great local soccer.
The boys from The Wood have been at the heart of the local community for a century or more, so please do go check out a match or two if you’re curious.