DAVID GARBACZ may not have been everyone’s cup of tea, but he has certainly helped to liven up the MGBSFL over the past few seasons.
Very few people could have filled Lord Kestenbaum’s boots after he left his post as manager of Hendon United, but Garbacz certainly stepped up to the plate — winning nine trophies in six seasons.
I particularly looked forward to his pre-match ramblings for my online preview, not to mention the mind games, where he often had rival teams beaten before the kick-off. There was the infamous spat with Redbridge Jewish Care boss Jon Jacobs.
The pair later kissed and made up but that is just an example of the type of character Garbacz was. As a manager, he was accused of being classless on more than one occasion, but he usually had the last laugh.
Like Marmite, his Maccabi rivals either loved him or loathed him. I know which camp I’m in and it is definitely a big loss for the league who need characters like him.
In Jewish football terms, he will certainly be remembered as the man who helped Hendon United clinch a hat-trick of national cups following victories over Oakwood, Flixton and now Raiders.
His most recent success was arguably his finest in my opinion as his tactics worked to perfection, against a Raiders team brimming with confidence and attacking options.
A squad containing Jordan Marks, Liron Mannie, David Dinkin, Matt Stock, Nyv Bogaire and Ben Ellis takes some stopping.
Goalkeeper Russell Corin was only really called into serious action twice, and crucially, Raiders never got behind them.
They didn’t dominate the way they have done in league and the cup competitions and Hendon scored at the perfect time. And there was no way back for Raiders.
Thanks for the memories, David.