Saturday, March 12, 2022

It was meant to be Roy of the Rovers, but we got same old Rovers instead


It was meant to be Roy of the Rovers stuff, in the end it was just same old Rovers.

It was written that a full year after a horrible injury, Dack returns, comes on as sub, scores the winner. But with a penalty as weak as Kehdra’s at Sheffield United. Quite why Dack took such a feeble shot is a mystery. It sucked the life out of what should have been a turning point in this disappointing phase of the season.

Even getting a penalty award from Gavin Ward was counter to everything you would ever expect from an official who has enraged this fan base more than George Courtney. 

In the first half, to be fair, Ward’s handling of a dismal encounter was probably the only competent performance out there. It couldn’t last.

Either Ward is a shrewd observer of the worst aspects of gamesmanship (cheating) or he just can’t accept that skilful players like Dolan and Khadra ever get legitimately fouled.

There was some good football played in that second half. Van Hecke was masterful. Rothwell menacing, a beautiful shot from Khadra bounced off the bar. Dack had another chance that fell to his sweet right foot. Gallagher, oh dear. He seems to make his best interventions in defensive positions; headed clearances, blocks and tackles. But he’s no striker. Not on recent showings. 

In the end even Bristol City upset their own game plan of following up Millwall’s slow grind of coming for a 0-0 draw. It was a very good goal of which Blackburn Rovers fans used to celebrate quite a few. 

This is my 500 words straight after the final whistle, usually I have a drive home to stew on it, but tonight I’m sat in the back and ignoring my driver.

I feel sad, slightly foolish and not for the first time in the last few years so bitterly disappointed for Dacky. 

Thursday, March 03, 2022

Lunch of the month for February - the winner

The month was cut a little short for me due to having Covid. So these are slightly slimmer pickings than I hoped for. And not many trips into Manchester or Stockport. That will change. 

Full marks to the steak and ale pie at the Wheatsheaf in Old Glossop, it took me back to the very first Freshwalks when this was the final destination. Superb piece of work.

No complaints about Nandos in Stockport either. But it's just a Nando's, right?

Antonios in Ashton was a real surprise. No disrespect to Ashton town centre, but this was a quality Italian and a cut above what I expected. I anticipated Pellicci and got a neighbourhood Piccolino. My canneloni was rich in tomato flavour, the garlic bread of similarly high quality to Rudi's Pizza, and it was a lovely friendly atmosphere. It stood up nicely next to actual Piccolino, where I was delighted to be asked back and I hope we can do some business with my host after our excellent calamari, followed by chicken and gnocci. It's slightly busting the budget rules though.

Also in the foody hot spot of Ashton was the absolute beast of a Morroccan / Lebanese mezze platter from Mozaic.  On any other month it would absolutely smash this competition out of the park. But it was a cold draughty day and though the food warmed us up, it wasn't as transformational as this month's close run winner.

The lunch of the month was actually an all day full Derbyshire breakfast from the Old Hall Hotel in Hope at the end of a glorious Freshwalks sunrise walk. 20 of us arrived and were served promptly, efficiently and with great humour. The bacon was thick and cured, just as I like it, the eggs done to perfection with deep pools of warm yoke to dip the sausage and black pudding into. The oatcake was a curve ball, if I'm honest, but gave it that point of difference for the local twist.

Maybe I'm also slightly biased, because I've had breakfast on my mind this week as Dave Angel reminds us all that pancakes are on Shrove Tuesday, with lemon, and sugar. And that a full English is the one thing at which we rule the world.

Well done everyone.