Sunday 19 January 2014

Week 20 Results - We won again, sort of

I hope all you gramblers enjoyed the little Goldilocks story in my last posting.  You did?  Well, here’s some fun for you; click on Goldilocks for a retelling of the story.  It is just the usual Goldilocks and the Three Bears, but if you click on captions to get subtitles, it becomes a lot more fun.  Go on.  Give it a go.

So how did The Grambler get on this week?  Well, not bad, but not good enough.  He/she/it managed to win 92 pees.  That means that for our £2.20 bet we only lost £1.28.  Oh well, back to the grambling board.

Here’s how each game went.

Crystal Palace vs Stoke – Prediction Home win – Yay!

Crystal Palace 1 Stoke 0

Jason Puncheon scored the only goal of the game as Crystal Palace moved off the bottom of the Premier League table with a victory against Stoke.  Such is the closeness of teams at the foot of the table, Palace moved up a full four places and out of the relegation zone thanks to this one win.  And after last week’s penalty miss from Puncheon (known as Punch to his teammates), he must have been punchin’ (Geddit?) the air with glee after scoring the winner in this game.  Probably shouting ‘That’s the way to do it!’ at the same time

Palace manager Tony Pulis aka ‘The Baseball Cap’ said after the game, “Sixteen games to go and we've given ourselves a chance from not having a chance but we can't get carried away.  Punch is a good player and people miss penalties. People might say not by that much but Punch had to get over it and there were no problems.”

Don’t football managers talk bollocks?

Stoke manager Mark Hughes said his team ‘huffed and puffed a bit’.  Obviously, he has forgotten he manages Stoke and not Wolves!  Aythengyow!

Carlisle vs Colchester – Prediction Home win – Naw!

Carlisle 2 Colchester 4

Sanchez Watt scored a first-half brace as Colchester beat Carlisle.

Watt's first was a 20-yard shot and, after Carlisle drew level through Magnus Okuonghae's own goal, the former Arsenal trainee rounded keeper Greg Fleming to roll into an empty net.

The visitors extended their lead after the break when Marcus Bean headed home and they made it 4-1 when Max Ehmer put Dominic Vose's cross into his own net.  Pillock.

Ehmer made some amends with a tap-in after Sam Walker spilled a free-kick.

Colchester move up to 12th in the table while Carlisle are now two points above the relegation zone.

Crewe vs Orient – Prediction Away win – Yay!

Crewe Alexandra 1 Leyton Orient 2

Two goals on his debut from substitute Chris Dagnall sent Leyton Orient to the top of League One as they came from behind to win at Crewe.

After a goalless first half, the Railwaymen went ahead when Byron Moore poked in from close range after Chuks Aneke's shot was blocked.

Former Barnsley striker Dagnall, levelled with a fierce finish from the edge of the box.

He then grabbed the winner when he tucked home Mathieu Baudry's cross.

The win was the Letter O's fourth in their last five league games as Crewe lost for the first time at home since November.

St Johnstone vs Hearts – Prediction Home win – Naw!

Saint Johnstone 3 Heart of Midlothian 3

88 minutes gone, the Saints 3 - 1 up (thanks to a Stevie May hat-trick) and cruising as they gave the poor old Jambos another doing.  Thus, ensuring The Grambler a third correct predict….

Two minutes to go!  Two minutes!  They just had to hang on for two more minutes, but in this game nothing went to plan.

Actually, this was possibly the craziest match this season – Shocking decisions from the officials (3 sendings off), rubbish defending from both sides and handbags at the OK Corral.

In a bad-tempered encounter, St Johnstone were down to ten men before the first goal was scored; when only 20 minutes were on the clock, Stephen Anderson was shown a red card for a foul on Dale Carrick.  Though the incident happened a full 30 yards from goal, referee Brian Colvin deemed it a goal-scoring opportunity.  I know we’re not supposed to criticise referees, but this guy was incompetent.

However, Saints continued to trouble the visiting defence and, when Kevin McHattie looked to hold Nigel Hasselbaink as the striker rolled him inside the penalty box, even though the foul was quite clearly made outside the box, Colvin appeared to take his assistant's advice to award a penalty that was stuck away into the corner by May.  Referee?  Him?

Saints stretched their lead after the break when May pounced on a fine Hasselbaink through ball and, although his first effort was blocked by goalkeeper Jamie MacDonald, the striker forced the ball over the line via deflections off Danny Wilson and Dylan McGowan.  If I were May, I’d be embarrassed to claim it.

The visitors were rarely a threat despite their numerical advantage but were suddenly back in the game when a McHattie cross was nodded home by Carrick from close range at the back post.

Any thoughts of an unlikely comeback appeared to be ended minutes later following an even more controversial penalty kick.

May flicked the ball against McHattie from point-blank range and, after the officials ruled that it had come off the defender's arm and not his chest, the striker produced another clinical spot kick for his 19th goal of the season.  Shocking refereeing.

However, in a rousing finish, substitute Nicholson sliced the ball home from close range, after which Mannus and Stevenson were shown red cards following an angry goalmouth melee.

When Wilson headed in a Jamie Hamill cross, it was Hearts who were celebrating to deny Saints a third straight home win.

Berwick vs Stirling – Prediction Away win – Naw!

Berwick Rangers 4 Stirling Albion 0

And finally, Cyril?  And finally, Esther new Berwick boss Colin Cameron saw his reign get off to the best possible start as Rangers claimed an impressive 4-0 win at home to Stirling.
Cameron, who took over from Little Ian following last week's 4-1 defeat by Annan Athletic, will have been delighted as his new side took the lead in the first minute.
Darren Lavery headed home after just 28 seconds to put the home team ahead and despite Stirling dominating possession, Berwick never looked like losing the lead.
Dean Hoskins headed home a Lee Currie free kick after half an hour to double his side's lead.
Currie made it 3-0 in the 54th minute when he fired in from the penalty spot after Ross Gray was brought down.
Currie netted his second five minutes later when he rifled a left-footed shot into the net from the edge of the area.

I suggested Berwick might get a point, but I didn’t expect this riot.  The result moves them one place up the league and Albion drop a place.

So there you have it my little grambling chums, only two out of five right this week, so the Bobby Moore Fund once again receives a measly £2.20.  There’s always next week.  Always.

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