Another very decent week for RCA, despite mounting injury and unavailability problems. A good win down at Thornaby I am told, with the Teessiders belying their lowly league position with a very spirited performance which stretched us to the limit before we managed to squeeze out the win. Followed by a big day out in Gateshead for the FA Cup match at our old rivals Dunston. Not a classic by all accounts but on paper a very good draw, and a chance to finish the job on Wednesday night. Swaz came up with a demon plan to stop Pagey playing which worked fairly well, unless he just felt guilty about deserting his old mates for the bright lights of the big city. I never knew he was such a fan of long bus rides.
Anyway on we go, ten games into the season and you really can’t complain. Elsewhere Stockton are going like trains, Hebburn are doing as well as expected, despite the odd blip, and Consett are not quite living up to the pre season hype. Billy Town are doing very well and both Northallerton and Thornaby look capable of making a fist of it over the season. So, a good season building up, no easy games and lots and lots of them. I’m not sure the idea of the four group games in the Mitre Brooks Mileson League Cup will end up looking like such a good idea as the winter draws on though. RCA are already looking at a minimum of forty nine games this season, probably and hopefully more, and that sounds more than plenty to me.
Elsewhere it was International week, with England looking to me as sloppy as usual, but managing to bully their way to a win over Bulgaria with, as I speak, the might of Kosovo to come. Should be OK, but their manager seems like a crackerjack, full of it, so he might inspire his lads to produce a shock. Let me know. Ireland and Northern Ireland are making a good fist of it as usual, and may well make a play off each to qualify, while Wales are not out of it and while they have Bale will have a chance. And then there is Scotland. Deary, deary me. Battling hard to catch Cyprus and Kazakhstan in the group and stay ahead of San Marino, whose team consists of waiters and bricklayers, a model Steve Clarke may be well advised to follow, they certainly have no footballers. Amazingly, even if they finish bottom they get into the play offs, thanks to their Nations Cup performance last year, which was inexplicably decent against the likes of Israel and Albania. Disappointment and destruction awaits however, mark my words.
And the Aussies retained the Ashes after all, although as compensation Sir Geoffrey becomes Sir Geoffrey for real at last. Who knows the ins and outs of his brush with the French law some years ago, over some fairly unsavoury allegations of domestic abuse, not my place to judge, others did though, and it is still a bit surprising from a super cautious person like Theresa May to make any kind of controversial awards. She must be enjoying her freedom.