The Three Wise Men
One cold November night on a training pitch in deepest darkest Kent...
Nigel Donn: Welcome back boss... Nice holiday?
Bill Williams: Great thanks, Nigel. Caught up with some old friends, went on safari, did some game hunting.
Ray Burgess: See any decent players then boss?
BW: So what the **** has been going on here then?
ND: Language boss. Someone might overhear you.
RB: Er well... we... er... lost... er... 0-2 at home to Chelmsford.
BW: That makes three defeats at home in a row.
ND: Trouble is boss that Jonah and Powelly don’t jump high enough when the ball comes forward. And we missed a penalty at 0-2 down when, if we had scored, we might have nicked a point.
BW: Virgo missed another one?
RB: No boss, Deano missed it.
BW: Deano - what the **** was he doing on the pitch?
ND: Don’t fret boss - he was only a late sub.
ND: We did manage to win at Tonbridge in the League Cup. Well, draw actually and win in extra time.
RB: Yeah I thought we’d turned the corner after that one.
ND: Another penalty boss and Virgs put it away, then Deano got the winner in extra time.
BW: Deano... you actually played him?
RB: No boss he came off the bench as per usual.
BW: So we stopped the rot before the crucial Trophy game. So what happened at Windsor?
RB: Lovely day boss - you’d never know that they had that big fire a while back. Safari Park was closed though.
ND: I think he means the football Ray.
RB: Ah right. Well Honey was back after over two months out but Farley had the 'flu.
ND: We went 0-2 down boss but rescued it second half and could have won it in the end.
BW: 0-2 down . Jesus Christ, they’re ******* Ryman Division 1. What are you two clowns playing at?
ND: (sobbing) Please mind your language boss. We changed the system second half and played a flat back four.
BW: Well done lads... A bit of initiative. Whose idea was that?
RB: Er... I think it was... er... Kevin Seabury’s boss. If it hadn’t been for a good equaliser from Deano then it would have
BW: Deano... Deano... Deano... Can’t you talk about anyone else?
ND: Well that was two in two for him boss, and from the bench as well.
BW: So you got them back to PVR. What happened?
ND: We decided to change systems and go with a flat back four.
BW: And were 0-2 down in ten minutes. Who were the centre backs then?
RB: Farley and Honey boss.
BW: Ah right. A bloke who has played ninety minutes in two months and the other one barely recovered from the 'flu.
ND: We went 0-3 down but Raph pulled one back on half time.
BW: I take it you gave them all what for at half time and made some changes.
RB: Er... well... er... not exactly boss.
ND: Yeah but we did get it back to 3-3 within ten minutes of the restart through Hoggy and Raph.
RB: They scored straight away with a free header from a corner which is unusual for us.
ND: We missed the influence of Ray in the middle.
RB: Ah thanks Nige, that’s really kind of you.
BW: So you get back to all square and chuck it away again. ******* hell.
ND: (weeping uncontrollably) Boss! Boss! Please watch the language. I think we should get a swear box at the ground.
BW: **** off Nigel. At least Raph got a couple, I suppose. That makes him top scorer and although he still misses some, there is definitely some potential to work with there.
ND: Slight problem there boss... we’ve just sold him to Woking.
BW: So did you make changes for the Tiverton game then?
ND: Sure did boss but we managed to keep Deano on the bench. Also got a defender in on loan from Farnborough called Tim O’Shea.
RB: Yeah and the lads told me that he has a brother called Rick who’s supposed to be a bit tasty so I might take a look at him.
ND: Hoggy got a nasty whack at the end of the first half so we had to put Deano on earlier than expected. Went 1-0 up early second half and sat back to soak up the pressure.
RB: Well, boss, they scored three in the last half hour.
BW: So lads, correct me if I’m wrong. We’ve now lost the last four league games and scored precisely two goals. We’ve also lost the last four games at PVR and conceded 13 goals in the process and we’re out of the Trophy.
ND: That’s about the size of it boss.
BW moves away to the side of the training pitch and gets out his mobile phone.
BW: Hello luv it’s me. Don’t unpack those cases just yet... ...