Sunday 31st July v Calders at Holyrood Sports Centre 5-2 (0-2) Martin Kelly, Arthur McCue (Danny McFarlane), Allan MacKenzie, Stuart Waugh, Jack Waugh, Ally McNaught (Alan Galindo), Craig McKenna, Calum Colquhoun (David Blair), Paul Joyce (c), Adam Walker and Sean Connolly (Andy McNaught)
at Holyrood Sports Centre 5-2 (0-2)
Martin Kelly, Arthur McCue (Danny McFarlane), Allan MacKenzie, Stuart Waugh, Jack Waugh, Ally McNaught (Alan Galindo), Craig McKenna, Calum Colquhoun (David Blair), Paul Joyce (c), Adam Walker and Sean Connolly (Andy McNaught)
The start of every new season brings its own excitement but this one was different.
Hollywood Legend Mel Gibson had bought the Club and this coincided with our momentous Silver Jubilee Season.
Despite promises to the contrary, Mel hadn’t splashed the cash and the backroom staff had been trimmed.
Only enigmatic Manager Mister C and venerable Club Kit Man Old Reg Winkerman had been retained with even favourites like Doctor Kuntz shown the door.
Although to be fair to the good doctor he was actually detained by the authorities due to many outstanding arrest warrants from his glittering career.
Even the Club Committee had been decimated and Christopher Biggins had left in in tearful scenes along with his friends Cilla, Paul, Dale and Kevin Spacey who had hoped to play a part this season.
In their place Mel had installed Charlie Sheen to oversee the day to day running of the Club which was good news for our veteran defender Arthur “Govanhill Hesus” McCue who announced that at last he had somebody off the pitch he could identify with.
For Health and Safety (gone mad) reasons we had to have a medical staff and the wise cracking Doctor Herbert De’ath took over along with Nurse Bunty Bunbridge, a fearsome woman with more facial hair than our own Gary Neville.
It was a nervous squad who turned up at Fortress Holyrood for the first game against Calders as they waited to see who had been retained on the playing staff.
The good news was that Safehands was still trying to pretend he was a goalkeeper and had spent the close season keeping his hand in by working with his popular country and western band, The Petting Zoo.
In fact a review of one of their concerts appeared in the New Musical Express during July.
Venue: The Crosshill Goal Machine Care Home For The Befuddled
Band: The Petting Zoo
“Last night I sat through an incredible night’s musical entertainment as I listened to local band The Petting Zoo.
The concert opened with the award winning “Metamorphism” and there then followed a couple of songs off their new album “Myxomatosis”, the haunting “Sublimation” and quirky “Antidisestablishmentarianism”.
The lead singer was certainly a big hit with the females in the audience who showed their appreciation in the traditional way by throwing their surgical stockings onto the stage. Unfortunately he failed to catch any of them.
The love song “
Unfortunately I have perfect pitch hearing.
Marks out of ten - 2, for the hairstyles”
The dressing room was starting to fill up but there was bad news as we heard that one of our new starlets, Alan G, had been delayed due to a burst tyre on his Club Car.
There was good news though as P.Danny and Andy Boy were also in the car and it was Muirend’s top rap singer who phoned in the news.
“I fear the worst,
The tyre’s burst,
I’d have stayed at hame,
If it wasn’t for the game”
More bad news as Andy Dick Brother had appeared but was suffering from an ankle injury after the heel of his stilettos had broken off at a night out with “the boys”.
The bad news continued as Marzinho called off as he was at the Royal Wedding of Zara Phillips and English
We were also missing our reserve keeper DouGay who had started a new job as the Sunday afternoon cabaret in his local pub in Maryhill, The Pink Flamingo.
Uncle Crossers was in attendance but unfortunately not able to play as he had to nip away early as he was filming his latest playlet, “Jackpot” a hilarious tale of a postman who comes into the money when a set of triplets on his route reach twenty one.
It’s a laugh a minute production and includes one of Uncle Crossers’ favourite jokes.
“A ghost walks into a bar and the barman says, “sorry I don’t serve spirits”….serve spirits, ha, ha…”
Luckily The Waugh Twins were with us but Slide Tackle Stu looked upset about something.
“Unfortunately during the summer I discovered that my phone had been hacked by journalists at the Tobermory Bugle and they have printed all sorts of messages that I have been sending to Sir Walterinho, who is the greatest manager my real club has ever had, and to Sir Alastair of McCoist, who isn’t”, explained Slide Tackle.
The Govanhill Hesus nearly rattled the dressing door off its hinges as he entered the room.
“AV JIST SEEN PEOPLE OOTSIDE PROTESTING ABOOT MEL GIBSON AND SAYING HE’S ANTI-SEMITIC.
“WELL AM NO HUVING THAT, I SAW MEL YESTERDAY IN THE CLUB GYM AND HE WAS WEARING A VEST SO HE
With three players still in transit, which was the make of van sent to get them, Mister C surveyed the dressing room and seemed relatively confident for a change.
“It’s great to see you all again and I really think this will be our season”, said Mister C as Old Reg made a gesture behind The Boss’s back which indicated that the drinks cabinet had opened early for the season.
“It’s not easy to pick a team as there is so much talent available but I’ll try my best.
“Safehands, you get a bad press, mainly about your singing, but in my opinion you are now our number one keeper, at least until Raymondo Martinez gets back from his vacation in The Bahamas.
“In defence we’ll start with Hesus and Wee Al at full backs with The Waugh Twins at centre back.
“The midfield is difficult to pick but we’ll start with
“Up front, seeing that Andy Boy and P.Danny are stuck in traffic, we’ll start with Mister Joyce and Weewhatshisname.
“This is a team that can score goals but it doesn’t matter who gets them as we’re all in this together, as Marzinho keeps on saying”.
Meanwhile, as those wise words echoed round the dressing room, in the Captain’s Corner Mister Joyce sneered and muttered away, “that Top Scorer’s Trophy should have been mine last season, all mine, I tell you”.
Just before the bell went to tell the team it was time to head out to the pitch the new owner made an appearance.
“G’day everybody, I think you’re aw magic, by the way, and I want us to pure like play way style and aw sorts of stuff”, said Mel.
“We’ve goat a pure teckle crowd oot there and I want them entertained”.
Indeed the house was full and Mel had been determined to get a capacity crowd for his first game and introduced a novel idea.
New Club Spokesman Dominik Diamond had compiled a press release earlier in the week but he just needed to confirm something with Mel.
Dominik spotted Mel in the corridor at Fortress Hampden and shouted to the Owner, “how much is entry for under 16’s and pensioners”.
“It’s FREE, DOM”, shouted back Mel.
The team ran down the tunnel to tumultuous applause and the game kicked off with our heroes playing some lovely passing football.
Calders had a young look about them, apart from Dannyinho and substitute Old Jackieo, and they started with just the one up front which made us look good.
But, as we sat back to watch our silky football we got hit on the break.
There were only seven minutes on the clock as a Calders guy picked the ball up in his own half and burst free with Wee Al on his tail.
Unfortunately Wee Al had just put out a fag out so couldn’t keep up and Safehands was easily beaten from close range as he shut his eyes and hoped for the best.
“An ainm an t-sealbh” said Wee Al our Highland left back and nobody could possibly disagree with those sentiments.
As if things weren’t bad enough, our three players who were involved in the tyre problem appeared.
P.Danny announced his arrival with a rap.
“The new season’s here,
Let’s give a cheer,
I feel it’s my year,
As long as I appear”
The early goal had settled Calders and they probably had the upper hand although Craig, who had been given the instructions to “blooter it” every time he got a sight of goal, had two shots saved by the keeper.
We headed towards half time and it looked like the newly arrived subs might have to be the answer especially as we lost another goal with five minutes remaining.
Safehands turned a shot onto the post but he couldn’t stop the rebound and the new season had started off with a damp squib.
As the team worked out how many subs were on at half time, they rallied and Weewhatshisname found himself through on goal.
The Wee Forward Guy’s shot was saved and, after a stramash in the area, Mister Joyce struck the bar as we came close.
With the referee looking at his watch to end the half Weewhatshisname broke away again but the keeper saved his effort with his feet and that was half time.
“Great start to the season, guys, and if I had eleven subs you’d all be off”, said an inspirational Mister C.
There were only four subs though and Hesus, Seanelli and the Neville Brothers all made way with The Teletubbies, Alan G and P.Danny taking their place.
The positional changes didn’t impress everybody though as P.Danny made his thoughts clear.
“I’m on at right back,
That’s a load of cack,
I wannae play up front,
That Mister C is a …….Tactical Genius who doesn’t get enough credit for the way he picks the team”
Things could only get better, was the song the team ran out to after the interval, but Safehands had to look lively to make a good save to keep Calders third goal out.
Already the season was looking like being too long but thankfully a turning point occurred.
Alan G burst down the wing but lost his footing on the pristine Fortress Holyrood surface and slid off and hit his head on the safety barrier.
Doctor De’ath sprinted to his aid and declared Alan G as being concussed.
Mister C was just thinking about a quick change, and getaway, when Doctor De’ath came back to the technical area to announce.
“Alan G is dazed and doesn’t know who he is so I patched him up and told him he was Marzinho, ha, ha, ha”, laughed the genial medic whose light heartedness was sure to grate throughout the season.
Amazingly this worked as Alan G brought us back into the game.
A superb lay off from Andy Boy (pint please) was picked up by the confused midfielder and he tried a spectacular lob from fully 35 yards which sailed over the Calders keeper and into the top corner.
At the other end Safehands had a satisfying smile on his face as he knew, in his heart of hearts, that he would have maybe, possibly, definitely, been beaten by that lob.
It was just the kick start our season needed and, on the hour mark, Craig chipped the ball through to Alan G and he fired a shot into the net from just inside the area.
More problems followed though as Jaaack received a knock just above his eye and had to come off with blood pouring from it.
Seanelli went back onto the pitch which meant our charismatic skipper Mister Joyce moved into central defence much to his delight.
Wee Al was so shaken by the sight of blood that he also asked to come off and Phil Neville was more than happy to take his place at his favoured left back position.
Phil immediately made an impact when he decided to head a passback straight to a Calders guy but Safehands parried the first effort.
The rebound fell to another Calders guy who sent over a cross which was headed over from under the bar. It was a miss that Phil would have been proud of himself.
Now luck isn’t something we ever seem to get during games, and personally I blame the referees who, despite getting paid by us, never give us any dodgy decisions, until now………..
The game was into the last ten minutes when a through ball found Alan G in an offside position, but the referee waved play on, and our new superstar midfielder smashed a shot at goal which the keeper turned onto the underside of the bar.
The stand side linesman immediately raised his flag to signal a goal but Seanelli made sure anyway by putting the ball into the back of the net.
First game of the season and a hat trick already, I knew this was the start of something special.
Calders heads were down and with five minutes to go Weewhatshisname put over a cross which Seanelli got on the end of.
His first effort was superbly saved by the keeper but Seanelli made no mistake second time around.
It was one way traffic and in the last minute Gary Neville, back on for Craig, put over a cross which Weewhatshisname dispatched first time into the net.
The final whistle blew and the crowd went wild in delight and so did the team.
“Never had any doubts Reg, this is going to be our season”, said Mister C.
Old Reg, with years of experience at the Club just nodded his head with a knowing, “heard it all before” look on his face.
Back in the dressing room Owner Mel came in to congratulate the team and announced that the drinks were on him in The Thomas Moony Moon Platinum Lounge.
On hearing this Hesus sprinted out the dressing room without getting changed but unfortunately this was to have terrible repercussions.
Hesus, who is on a strict diet of baking products, forgot to take his daily intake and was later found walking the streets of Govanhill shouting, “who stole my pancakes”.
The rumours that rotund centre forward Andy Boy was the culprit have so far been unproven although he was seen after the game buying a jar of strawberry jam and a pot of honey.
A sad end to what was an excellent second half comeback but it was just good to have the football back and hopefully more adventures are to come.