Up for the Cup

Match report by RUNNING MONKEY

Morecambe 3 Pools 0 (FA Cup)
Saturday November 4th 2017
Globe Arena

I was talked into getting a ticket for this game. Looking at our form I thought we might be in with a chance of an away draw and the subsequent home game to bring some money into the coffers. 

One reason I wanted to return to the Globe Arena was that the first (and last) visit I made was when we, despite the efforts of Dave Jones, managed a draw. Looking back, we did have a five-two win there the season before when the goalkeeper Roach had a wobbler in front of the Pools fans and was sent off. So from 2-5 to 1-1 and now 3-0, we have become progressively worse at Morecambe.

I wanted to go back a second time as last year I had hoped to see the statue of Morecambe’s famous son John Eric Bartholomew, or as he was better known, Eric Morecambe. I liked Eric Morecambe back in the day, I thought he was a funny man despite his little side kick with the short hairy legs. I was told last season that from the ground it was too far to walk to see the statue, as we were in Snapper's car and he had to get in the ground early, I thought about getting a bus but it was a twenty-minute wait so despite a warning from the sprog it would take an hour. OK we can stop here and wait for an hour for food that never came as the Snapper* did.
"we had no game plan other than to hoof the ball away and it just kept coming back; we literally ran out of ideas."

So we set off down the side streets to cut down the distance rather than head for the sea front and follow the prom. Overall it took about an hour to get there and back. One thing about using the back streets - you see what the town is like behind the shabby fa├žade of the seaside resort. It is just like all the other seaside towns that have fallen out of favour with the British public who now enjoy warmer climes for their jollies. A bit more run down than most, it reminds me of Seaton Carew on a dull day. Despite all the money spent on Seaton I still say the best thing about Seaton Carew is the view of the Headland, but I may be a little biased.

We made it to the statue after stopping to help an old local chap who had fallen off his mobility scooter after hitting the post of a street sign. He was a little shaken up bur once we got him back on his scooter and got it started again he was off home. We crossed the road to the statue to get a photo. I always thought of Eric being a tall man, but maybe they cut down on the cost by making a reduced size statue of this giant of British entertainment.

We hiked back to the stadium on the strength of a local meat and potato pie which I would rate six out of ten as I was hungry. It was a good job after hearing how The Snapper had fared in the pub grub stakes, He did get his drink free after complaining twice about the service that never happened. As you can see from my efforts to entertain you all I have waffled my way to a decent word count simply because there was very little to write about in the football stakes.

It is a tidy ground the Globe Arena but the roof of the away stand behind the goal did not shade the eyes from the low autumn sun, so it was a good job in the first half that the clouds were rolling in. One drawback was that the area behind the stands was too small for half time recreation and what turned out to be unisex toilets brought screams of horror or delight from the ladies during their ablutions as they came from the cubicles seeing half a dozen blokes queuing up to use the same facilities. Surely they were not away fans?

The football. Two names we will remember: Kevin Ellison, the tall, rangy, bald striker who has tortured Pools for far too long was making a return to the team after injury. He loves to score against Pools and always does. And he did. Along with another player Adam McGurk whose combined ages must be eighty-six, used cunning and guile and pulled us all over the pitch all afternoon. Ellison duly got an early goal from poor defending and we struggled to get anything going at all in the first half and were lucky to go in just the one goal down.

Hawkins took a booking for a two footed lunge early in the game that deserved a card. Morecambe played the ref all the game, one player going down four times in the first half after some innocuous challenges. The only real chance of the half I remember was when Featherstone made a run into the box, but once there he had no idea what to do next. A shot may have helped but he stood motionless then stroked the ball to a defender who wellied it away.

Second half Pools stepped it up a bit, playing towards our fans. We made hard work of it and were living on scraps as we looked as if we had no game plan other than to hoof the ball away and it just kept coming back; we literally ran out of ideas. One incident saw the ref pulling up Donnelly and booking him, after pointing around the ground to show where he had made bad tackles but we thought he had taken the rap for some of the tackles George had made. One of them needs to get a shave!

As we all now know, we got beat three-nil and the goals came on the break as Pools pushed forward looking for an equaliser, one goal was credited to Loach which was a bit unfair as a shot came off the post hit him on the back of the head and went in the goal. As you know I do not normally do away games but I have to say the Pools travelling fans are something else. They backed the lads all the way and even though we were three nil down with fifteen minutes to go the fans all crowded down to the edge of the pitch and the noise was unbelievable. At home three nil down with fifteen minutes to go would have seen all the glory hunters leaving the ground with gestures of mock disgust These true fans supported the team all the way and to a man the Pools players all came down to the fence to salute the travelling army. It was a pleasure to watch.

Now I have my pic I have no reason to travel two and a half hours to see the sea -  I have that at home.

* The Snapper is a certain gentleman who always brings his own seat to the Vic - Ed