It was a throwback to the 1980s when I watched the second leg of the Champions League semi-final between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge last week. Sitting in the press overflow in the East Lower Stand, I was taken aback by the foul-mouthed language coming from the terraces.
If I’d have started a swearbox I’d have come away from West London wealthier than Roman Abramovich. It was certainly no place for young supporters but that is the decision of their parents who pay for their admission into the ground. Having earned excellent victories over the Merseysiders and Manchester United days earlier, I was amazed that not one voice sang the praises of manager Avram Grant.
Having eliminated Liverpool, I hope the blues go on to beat United again but at least the national media is finally starting to give the Israeli the credit and respect he deserves. The coverage of him in Auschwitz to commemorate Holocaust Day last week sent shivers down my spine. Four English teams will take part in the annual Jom Ha Voetbal tournament in Amsterdam on June 1.
WHAFC, Southgate Harmen, South Manchester Maccabi, Alyth Belsize are involved in an event that will feature 74 teams playing 170 games in a day. London Maccabi Lions B boss Daniel Reuben is a doubt for the team’s last two matches after tweaking his hamstring playing WiiFit.
With the season in wind-down and just three more championships to be settled, double-winning North West Neasden A boss Jamie Cole has continued the mind games by vowing to give “some B and C team players” an outing in Sunday’s Premier Division clash against London Maccabi Lions A. The Lions are the only team to have beaten Neasden in the league this season and joint-manager Ben Winston recently reminded Cole that Neasden haven’t beaten the Arkley based giants in their last nine meetings. With second place still up for grabs, the Lions hope that Chigwell Athletic A can do them a favour in a double-header against Peter Morrison Trophy runners-up Hendon United A.
Glenthorne United hope to wrap up the Division One title when they entertain Brady Maccabi. The Edgware club, who drew 1-1 against the Thornes in February, have done a wonderful job to maintain their first division status this season with Joel Lassman and Steve Weston looking to continue their good form.
If Brady manager Lynton Stock can mastermind a shock result over the East Londoners, he might well be sent a bottle of bubbly by Montana A boss Marc Ziedman. Second-placed Montana hope to move a step closer to promotion when they entertain struggling Faithfold B. Montana are another of the division’s surprise packages and revenge will clearly be on their minds as the greens thumped them 6-2 in the corresponding fixture when Nick Spevock (2), Adam Phillips, Jamie Taylor, Bradley Cohen and Darren Bloom did the damage. South Mancunians A are playing catch-up in Division Two.
With three games remaining, they take on FC Heath knowing that only maximum points and plenty of goals will help them pip Oakwood B to the title. The fourth division title should be decided this weekend with FC Team A confident of clinching their first piece of silverware when they take on arch rivals AC Cricklewood. Mitch Young’s men know that a point against their former bogey team will be enough to start their celebrations.