Saturday July 3rd will go down in WTF history as we hosted our inaugural charity football match.
24 members of our Fartlek Family travelled from all over the country to take part at the Goodwin Sports Centre in Sheffield as Rob and Matt battled it out to win the coveted (Amazon Prime Special) WTF Trophy.
Controversy and drama enveloped the day when traffic depleted Roberham United’s ranks to just 10 players at kick off. In a deadline day move that would have had Jim White’s yellow tie spinning (146 curly wurlys), attacking midfield sensation John Pickup swapped allegiances at the 25th hour. JP was quoted as he arrived at his new club ‘This kit is dead heavy and shit, their one was dead good’
With their ranks bolstered, Roberham United took to the field and the game got underway on time. A cagey first half was played in good spirits, both teams drew saves from the respective keepers. However, the battle was mostly waged in the middle of the park with Shaun West and Jack Penfold doing their best to stifle the creativity of Matlesfield Town’s sibling pairing of Adam and Rick Axford.
The deadline was broken just before half-time as Oly Newton put United 1 up with a cool finish 1 on 1 following a through ball from Pickup.
Some tired bodies were well ready for half time. Boosted and energised by our Match Sponsor, Voom Nutrition, 15 minutes later it was time to go again.
With Town now pressing higher up the pitch in search of an equaliser, gaps began to open up and United, led by Jon Flynn soon made them pay. The self proclaimed King of good energy found the score sheet either side of a brace from Pickup in a quick fire assault to seemingly put the game to bed before the 60th minute.
Feeling the game slipping away, Town came into their own somewhat and began to attack with more vigour. Crawford and Griffiths started to find space and Adam Axford pulled a deserved goal back shortly after.
The comeback was short lived though as United won a corner approaching the last quarter of the game. West rose highest to beat the keeper and as his header looped towards goal, Captain Matt Taylor climbed majestically like a salmon to clear the ball…only to miss it completely. Re-adjusting his feet seamlessly he gave himself a second swing at a clearance…only to miss it completely again. The ball trickled agonisingly over the line as Taylor followed it, falling like a felled bonsai tree into the empty net.
Town set about shutting up shop and finishing strong and led by Centre Half pairing of Nick Finney and James Gallacher were able to stem the flow of United attacks. Italian international Marco DelWatssio and Taylor started to join in the attacks and it was only a strong United defensive line led by the evergreen Rich Neal and Ben Stittle who kept them at bay.
Captain Rob Hitchmough put the icing on the cake, bringing himself on in midfield for last 15 minutes and basically standing up front cause he ‘had cramp’ meaning he was positioned to finish off a fine United move and make it 6-1.
There was still time for controversy as Town won a penalty when Gallacher was sythed down in the box by Simon Grace, letting out a shriek that would have you believe he had been shot. Striker Donna Monnelly stepped up and drilled her spot kick high and hard, only for it to be beaten away by ‘the Dream-Killer’ Sam Rumley.
As full time sounded, Matlesfield Town could feel a little hard done to from a score that flattered their opponents slightly, however Roberham United were surely worthy of the win and title of inaugural WTF Cup Champions.
Most importantly, we raised over £400 for our partner Charity Prostate Cancer UK and had a great time doing it!
A huge thank you to all those who took part and we are already planning the next one.