Yes, they're footprints on the roof of my car. Size nine baseball boots if I'm not mistaken, and that's not all. The perpetrator - no doubt using their index finger - had wiped away the grime from the roof of my Peugeot 405 and emblazoned in bold capitals the word, 'COCK.' No matter. Yes, great plumes of smoke are emitted from the exhaust every time I turn the ignition, the door locks have a mind of their own and now it's being used as a public right of way, but it gets me from A to B and when all's said and done that's all that matters.
Burridge understand that principle all too well. They had all the components at their disposal to see off M&T and get the three points they needed to get some kind of stranglehold on second place. M&T were held prisoners in their own half during the first forty-five minutes, Jamie Hewitt made it one-nil and mid way through the second half younger brother Sam made it two. There was not a shred of evidence from the game that the final ten minutes would become so painfully inexplicable for Burridge.
The box seat was Burridge's, they were in control, they could put daylight between themselves and Netley in third place. Nothing to worry about. But, many a battle has been lost in the head. Were these dizzy heights affecting Burridge? Maybe their collective unconsciousness could not accept this new position of control, and with that absence of worry began rooting through their minds looking for it as if maybe it was hidden under the sofa or behind the curtains. This process in itself can only whip up the biggest monster of them all - self doubt.
This game was best represented by the United States of America in 1961. Honest tax paying citizens, eating TV dinners from trays on their laps, obediently watching game shows from the television sets of the lounge of their houses that occupy the hundreds of tree lined streets of America. Things are going so well. It's two nil to Burridge. The U.S are conquering space. There's so much cause for optimism. Promotion here we come. They'll be man on the moon.
It's all too much for John F Kennedy, it's all too much for Burridge. Giving Marilyn Monroe one over his presidential desk in the White House, off his tits on prescribed barbiturates, only a reach away from the big red button, from a nuclear war, and he knows he shouldn't, but by God he wants to press it, but no, he mustn't. M&T score. Where did that come from? JFK has his brains blown out in Dallas and now a penalty kick for handball, but from whom? The fist of a defender from the grassy six yard box, that's who.
What now? Time running out, panic setting in, that lovely red button looking so appealing and whoosh, it's pressed. The wheels are in motion. Two missiles, one for Cuba and one for those commie swine in Moscow's Red Square. Here they come. Foul play by Kristian Hewitt (pictured above) - red card. Sam Hewitt tells the referee in no uncertain terms what he thinks of the decision and bang, he's off. The red card fills the grey skies of which it is held upon like some mushroom cloud. We have lost men. We have conceded a free kick. It is sent to the back post and even before a head meets it, its destination is clear. The net bulges. It is 3-2. It is a war in Vietnam that cannot be won. Hope and optimism have been replaced by sorrow and misery untold. Burridge will have to start again. Everything will have to start again.
3-5-2: Jones, M.Sanderson, K.Hewitt(c), Kelly, S.Schwodler (L.Sanderson), Newman (Dyke), Reeves, Baker, J.Hewitt, B.Schwodler, S.Hewitt