Live interactive report

Equifax v. PFFC

Goober Fox, 9 May 2005


Please do contribute to this page while the match is in progress. Email me and I'll post your comments here (the appropriate ones, anyway). Thoughts on the match, PFFC's current league position, memories of previous encounters, or an aside on any old thing.

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PFFC squad formation


9.16 Just received a message of congratulations from Lele, who seems to have got snarled up in the infamous Roman traffic on the way home from work: "I know it sounds crazy but probably at the same time of Kieran scoring I was listening to the first PFFC CD coming home to try and get the last minutes of the match!!! WELL DONE REDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ANOTHER BRAVE COMEBACK!!!! with a quotation I proposed the Gaffer for a shirt: 'You can change events with actions based on the solid rock of your will' (Pope John Paul II........and most of our players in the second half I reckon)."

9.07 Thanks to Joe and Paul for their contributions. I'm going to sign off now.

9.00 Equifax manage to clear and the ref blows up for full time. As with so many games this season, if we'd not made a couple of ridiculous unforced errors, all 3 points would have been ours. As it is, we did well do salvage a point with a lot of hard work through the middle of the pitch and good striking from Dennis and Mauro. A solitary point keeps us out of the relegation zone but not yet safe. Wednesday's match against Visa now becomes more crucial.

8.59 Possibly our last chance of the game - a free kick, which went over. It's still all us, but the ref is looking at his watch. Dennis gets the ball and passes to Giacomo, who shoots but forces a corner. Ally pounds it in to the box to Vito, who can't find a way through.

8.58 Last minute support from Paul: "Up the Thinkers. Come on the lads!" Things are hotting up on the pitch so it seems to be helping.

8.57 Just checking the Gaffer's Top 10 PF matches in last season's Review to look at other great comebacks - in hope that this will be one, of course. Immediately our 6-4 trouncing of Aztec in 2001-02 comes to mind. 3-0 down and then came back. Last week's 3-2 comeback against M&S was an epic as well. And of course, the 4-3 ding-dong againsdt Air France in our first season in the London League.

8.54 By the way, get well Jacob Boyle - in bed with tonsilitis. Nasty. Sure he'd be screaming his support if he was well.

8.52 Now it is end-to-end - we've got a corner after a counter-attack straight from their corner.

8.51 PF have now regained some confidence and are passing it around with more composure. They're still not getting much of a look-in. Oh, as I speak they've got a corner - their third of the night.

8.45 Goal! Joe Boyle, I don't know how you do it but you have strange and powerful magic! Now 2-2 - vice captain Kieran scored from a header on the edge of the box. It's still all PF action, the opposition haven't done anything during the match. If we can avoid making any more crass errors we should be able to win this one after all.

8.43 Paul's just sent in a brilliant line-up pic - click here to see it.

8.41 I feel for the sake of propriety - and in case any players' grannies are reading this - I shouldn't be too specific here - but Joe has promised to perform a lucky act which once worked in getting Sunderland a crucial winner in a relegation dog-fight five years ago. Erm, thanks Joe, it's the thought that counts I suppose.

8.40 Equifax have got their first corner of the night....

8.37 Apparently Jez is at a gig in Brussels tonight. Time was he would have been out raving night before a match. Hopefully he'll be able to to write in a bit later to beef up this legends online community.

8.35 Message for the team from Paul: "Up the Thinkers!" Couldn't have put it better myself.

8.34 Just as in the first half, it's all PF at the moment. Come on defence, don't let us down!

8.33 Great news! Dennis has scored to put us only one behind.

8.32 No news coming through from the pitch at the moment, so it's over to you - email in with any thoughts.

8.29 The last track on the PFFC CD has just started - a dreadfully tacky song from Rome, chosen by Lele. I think I'm going to have to turn it off. Lele, are you there to take the blame? Get in touch if so.

8.26 This is where I could do with a photo or two from the match. If nothing comes in I might have to try drawing some stickmen pictures artist's-impression stylee.

8.24 PFFC pressuring again from the off: another PF corner, Dennis gets in a shot, but it goes wide.

8.22 second half Half-time has come and gone quickly. Right from the kick-off, the ball went to Vito, who crossed to the afore-mentioned Ally on right wing, who put in a shot from 20 yards out which went just over the bar. 2-1. Apparently Equifax had nothing in the first half, no chances and didn't look particularly good, and the two goals the got were given away too too easily by PFFC.

8.18 PF skipper from 1999-2003, Paul Kayley, checks in to ask: "What's cooking tonight, Goober Ramsay?" Not porridge, that's for sure; I learned my lesson when I burned my breakfast while reporting on the early match in Paris. Actually just spooning in a few mouthfuls of organic rice salad. Don't know what's wrong with me, perhaps skipper Ally's new dietary regime has rubbed off on me. Wasn't organised enough to cook something before starting this report, and now can't leave my Mac... How are you, Paulo?

8.15 A codicil to my analysis of our position at the moment: if we lose this one, as it now looks we might, we'll be in a relegation dogfight during the end of the season. One thing in our favour is that due to the bizarre fixture system, we've got a few games in hand over the other teams at the foot of the table. Of course this is only in our favour if we can win those games.

8.12 Bugger. All that pressure, those corners, a great shot from each of our strikers, and we've gone 2-0 down. I need another beer.

8.10 Just realised that to give the report added veracity I should adopt that tense peculiar to professional footballers that I nicknamed the 'past superfluous' some years ago: "I've gone in there, and Bobbo's put the ball through..." I'll see what I can do.

8.06 Dennis has put in a great shot which has resulted in our third corner. I'd say it's end-to-end stuff, but haven't heard much action from Equifax for a while, and actually sounds as thopugh we're peppering their box.

8.02 Since the goal it's all been Philosophy. We've just had a free kick from 30 yards out. It fell to Kieran, who headed over the bar.

8.01 Mauro's just provided our best chance yet: a thunderous shot which ricocheted off the bar. At least we're keeping the pressure up. (Get ready for the sucker punch in the next posting....)

7.57 Greetings to former right-back legend Joe Boyle, first to write in tonight. He asks for more details on the significance of this match. Basically from the first couple of matches this season it was clear that the standard was a leap up from that of the First Division, and even AIQL, who came up with us, had radically changed their line-up and were far more a force to be reckoned with. We quickly found ourselves at the opposite end of the table from that we'd been used to in recent seasons, and points have been hard to come by all season. However in the second half of the season we've had a few crucial victories, although we've continued to lose some of the easier matches, and consequently look as though we should stay up. A victory tonight would put us 7 points ahead of M&S, below us, and make us all but mathematically secure. However Equifax are a tough team, and it's by no means guaranteed. As their early goal would suggest.

7.53 We've forced another corner. This is where PFFC has been successful in recent matches, by keeping the pressure up and forcing corners, not allowing the opposition to get settled. Against France Football in Paris and Marks & Spencer it yielded 3 goals, so here's hoping...

7.50 Red heads aren't down, which is good to see. We've started pressuring, and forced a corner. Dennis gets a shot in, but it's not good enough to even the score. Pity his son's not there to inspire an invincible performance from his father.

7.46 Ahh, the agony! An early goal from the opposition puts us 1-0 down straight off. However we did come back against this team in our previous meeting, with a glorious last-minute strike from Gibbo leaving us at 3-3, so there's hope yet.

7.44 It's quite even so far - no chances on either side yet, but we're looking fairly composed. Now we're in the latter stages of the season, we've played every team at least once so can feel we have the measure of each of them. Unless they've been doing some serious buying, that is. Apparently they have the most horrendous shorts, with about 10 colours on - these would never passFilippo's satrorial test.

7.41 I'm not quite sure what to think about this game. It's been a shaky season against far classier opposition than we've been used to, and we've struggled to raise our game to the new level. We've had some of the best performances I've seen from PFFC, including the early encounter with the Champions, Invisible FC, but these haven't always got results. And then there have been some real stinkers where we've fallen apart, reminiscent of the team when I started.

7.40 The whistle's just blown! Our kick-off. Here it goes....

7.38 I'm starting to feel the loneliness of the long-distance reporter...

7.35 Just thought - to paraphrase Harold Wilson, PFFC only win championships under a Labour government. Could this be one good thing to come out of last week's election?

7.32 Come on, Philosophy! Or rather, come on, whistle!

7.29 Well kick-off should be any second now, although past experience has been that the first match is always allowed to over-run, leaving us no more than 80 minutes including half-time break before the floodlights are doused...

7.26 The second track on the Thinkers' Tunes CD is Born to Be Wild by Steppenwolf, in honour of Stefan's air guitar heroics on the dance floor when this came on the PA during the Hague tour. I wish I'd been there, just the thought of it makes me laugh. Stefan, are you reading this? Do email in if you can; it'd be great to hear from you.

7.25 The Archers have signed off without much happening - Jennifer's a bit upset, but what's new - so I've stuck on the most recent "Thinkers' Tunes" CD, which should help the match to kick along nicely. I've asked for someone to take photos with a camera phone and email them through to me, so hopefully this should not be just interactive but a multi-media match report experience.

7.20 A few words about the visit of Sant'Onofrio from Rome this week. It's been decided that the theme of the tour will be "Never forget" to commemorate the defeat of fascism asa force 60 years ago. The PFFC Stars and Legends teams will play in the UK refugees shirt (has names of famous refugees made into a map of the UK) and the Hope not Hate shirt, which has been used in campaigns against BNP candidates across the country. The Romans are coming in on different planes but we'll all be meeting for a celebration somewhere on Friday evening - be interesting to see the different approaches to the night before a big game, and whether the Gaffer's dietary regime has taken hold, ie how much beer/wine will be consumed on either side...

7.15 Everyone's there on time - the full 11 plus just Ronan on the bench. This is a crucial game - if we win it we're virtually secure to stay up. The Gaffer's just been on the phone to give a touchline report, and sounds upbeat. Dennis has found a babysitter so our other sub won't be there...

7.05 I'm in a good mood today after West Ham somehow scraped through to the playoffs of the C**a C**a Championship. Not quite sure how they managed that, but they did it at the expense of the more worthy Reading, which could be a point of issue between my friend Geoff and I. And today we hear that Paul Jewell will be give £25 million to spend on players to keep Wigan in the Premiership next season. Of course, the big question on everyone's lips is: will Chairman Tisdale give the Gaffer the same amount to keep PFFC in the London League Premiership?

7.02 So do start firing your emails in with thoughts, fears, hopes about PFFC's progress tonight and for the rest of the season, or anything else that's on your mind. Otherwise you'll be subjected to my thoughts on the Archers...

7.00pm OK, here we go. Like any good hack I've just cracked open a can of beer before starting work; like any good hack, I've also only got half my mind on the job as the Archers is on...

6.25pm The Gaffer has just released the likely starting line-up: Owen; (right-left) Steffen, Filippo, Damian, Vipul; Ally, Marco, Kieran, Vito; Dennis, Mauro. Cornish Al is still out, unfortunately, with an ankle injury picked up during the defeat against Abbey, and GIbbo and Marco are out too. Dennis is bringing his young son, Matteo, along as support and hopefully inspiration for our Italian striker. WIll confirm the line-up when I hear.


The report will be uploaded live as the match progresses, from 19.00 BST.

See you then!