Tag Archives: Fulham

Match Report – Fulham 2-1 Dons – 02/04/2016

Not just A, but The Fulham Football Club
Not just A, but The Fulham Football Club

If ever there was a great day out ruined by the football, then this was it.

It started well – a beautiful sunny day in Milton Keynes, lots of coaches lined up outside the Arena (AKA the Semi-Colon) and lots of Dons fans milling about.  The wonderful people at Piglets’ Pantry had laid on free brunch for all (not sure whether that was a marketing exercise from them or if it was funded by the club – probably a bit of both) so having grabbed a sausage roll and a Coke, we climbed the stairway to Coach 10.

Coach trips are never the most entertaining thing, but twitter wars can raise the boredom threshold a little – #CoachWars and #CoachWarsSoundtracks kept us going a little, spread to Facebook and at one point had representatives from about half of the coaches, all talking bollocks about how great their coach was, and the rubbish/cool/odd music they were listening to.  Coach 10 won.  I love being a grown up 😉

For those of you who aren’t up to speed with the charitable element of the day – we had nine people who had walked the entire way from Milton Keynes to Fulham, and two who had Kayaked, all raising money for Willen Hospice.  The original plan was to raise £1,000, which then became £3,000, and then £5,000 as donations flooded in.  All along the journey, we were getting updates through Facebook and Twitter of the progress that the Walkers and Kayakers were making, with each group making the final stages of their three day journeys as we relaxed into our air-conditioned seats.  Everyone was due to meet at the statue of Johnny Haynes at 2:00pm, where the participants could receive our applause, meet Winkie, and the rest of us could bask in the reflected glory of those who’d done simply amazing things to get there.

The Walking Dead, The Kayak Brothers and a Winkie
The Walking Dead, The Kayak Brothers and a Winkie

Winkie was late (as usual ;-)) but not that late – much applause was applauded, great photos were taken, and many hugs were hugged.  It’s quite incredible what some people are prepared to do to raise money for others, and I applaud each and every one of you.

So into the ground then – nice and busy, and there was an atmosphere building, both in the bars and up in the stand.  The stewards were insistent that everyone went up the right stairway for their ticket, which in my experience never bodes well for a nice relaxed afternoon.  If you’ll allow me to rant for a while, this sort of stewarding ‘control’ always seems to be more than a little futile in a football environment.  The aim presumably is to ensure that everyone sits in their designated seat, but unless you’re in an environment where every seat has been sold (and I think we can safely say that’s not likely to happy very often for us) I honestly can’t see a single point in it.  It’s not the theatre, where you’re able to choose a specific seat – you’re given the next one off the top of the pile and you have no choice in where that seat is.  If everyone did sit in the seat randomly allocated by the order in which they bought them, you end up with friends separated, people wanting to sit in with those wanting to stand and vice versa, people wanting to sing in with those preferring not to and vice versa.  There are no security implications either, because no club has the faintest idea which tickets are allocated to any individual.  Frankly it’s all a bit daft.

A Cottage Earlier Today
A Cottage Earlier Today

Anyway, the atmosphere rocked – we were on good form in the stands, though almost nothing could be heard from the Fulham crowd except for the sound of 10,000 cardboard ‘clackers’.  I should point out that while a lot of people were loudly proclaiming how plastic the clackers were and how we’d never do anything like that, we would and we have.  The Morecambe game at the end of the JPT/Promotion season was awash with them, and plastic as they are, they were rather good on the day, and when accompanied by pretty continuous chanting they sounded great.  On their own though?  A bit crap really.

Football-wise, we weren’t good.  We looked like a side that was low on confidence and low on ideas, and we were lucky to go in at half-time on equal terms.  Fulham hit the post, and while they didn’t force any/many saves from Cody in the first half, they had enough opportunities that they should have.  It was good to have JFK back in midfield, but he looked a little sluggish, which wasn’t too surprising for his first game back.

The Kayak Brothers and a Winkie
The Kayak Brothers and a Winkie

Halftime entertainment was provided by the daft racist behind me who, when asked by another fan to rein in his ‘Abdul’ related shouts at the steward got all hot and bothered.  His insistence that the rest of us who were taking an interest should ‘turned round and watch the game’ seemed to be unmoved by the fact that as it was halftime, there was nothing else to watch.  To be fair, his mates seemed a little embarrassed by him, but weren’t able to or interested in calming him down (which is always a sign that perhaps you’re hanging round with the wrong people 😉 #justsaying).  One of their group suggested that it was none of our business, and that we were ‘grasses’ which was the first time I’ve found myself in the middle of an Eastenders episode at a game ;-).  Another of their group very politely suggested that I shouldn’t do anything to ‘wind him up’, but to be honest, if being asked politely to calm it down and stop being racist towards the stewards winds someone up, then fuck him.  A storm in a teacup of course, doesn’t mean anything in the wider scheme of things, but an indication of something that we’ll have to deal with as a fanbase.  I’ve got a lovely photo of the guy in question if the club are interested.

Second half – we conceded, then woke up a little bit and looked more likely to score for a while.  Then we did.  Then we looked more likely to concede again.  Then we did.  We did look more threatening in the second half, but the same old defensive frailties that have haunted us all season were on hand to make Fulham look like world-beaters.  The lack of goal threat that has haunted us all season was again on hand to make Fulham look like defensive masterminds.  No idea how that bloke who scythed George down stayed on the pitch – a straight red in any other game I’ve seen this season.  Wouldn’t have had a bearing on the game in any way though.

Not THE anymore then
Not THE anymore then

Robbo suggested in his post match interview that we deserved a point from it.  We didn’t.  They could have had three or four more in the second half, were it not for a great performance from Cody, and we very rarely came close to threatening their goal.  We’re not psychologically strong enough to win games against the teams that we have to be taking points from.  We look lost.

It’s not all over of course – the teams around us are down there for a reason, and while some (well almost all) of them are having some form of resurgence, it might not last.  We’d still have to produce the sort of consistency over the remaining matches that we’ve been unable to muster up at all this season, and I can’t see us doing that, but I’ll remain positive until it’s mathematically impossible for us to stay up.

If we do go down, we’ll brush ourselves off, whinge for a bit, then get back into it and enjoy league 1 again.

The one really sour point (other than the football) was hearing that some of the walkers had been denied entry into the game, having walked 54 miles to attend it.  I can’t quite imagine what that must feel like for them, and I really can’t understand what Fulham FC are doing to let something like this happen.  Complimentary tickets that were provided to the Walkers by Winkie and Andrew Cullen were said to be fakes by the stewards on the gates.  Personal intervention by Andrew Cullen helped out with some of them, but others ended up back in the pub, missing the match that they’d put so much into attending.  Poor show Fulham – very poor show.  Something significant needs to be done to make it up to the fans in question, AND something significant needs to be done to support the charity in question.

That looks grand that does!
That looks grand that does!

All in all, a great day out, marred slightly by an angry racist and the Fulham stewards attitudes to the walkers.

Feeling down, but not out.

Brando.

 

Gers on Sunday – We Don’t Give A F**k About Charity – 03/04/2016

When I was a wee small lad back in the mid-sixties (yes, I am that old) I loved footy. Went every other week. One shilling for kids. It was a serious amount of money at the time, when pocket money was two of the aforementioned bobs. We were poor, but we were happy etc, etc, etc. But as young men will, girls and music intervened, and the lure of standing on a terrace with someone pissing down the back of your leg waned somewhat.

The mid-seventies arrived. I was an original punk rocker, had a girl friend, and a stupid haircut, but more importantly, I was a skateboarder. Yes, you’ve read that correctly, I skated. I was 13 when I first started skating. I was in my mid-forties when I stopped. And yes, you’ve also read that correctly, I was in my mid-forties when I, a middle-aged man, stopped skateboarding.  

Skateboarding is a truly wonderful thing. Skating in the mid-nineties when you’re in your thirties, married, a father, have a mortgage and running your own one man business, well it takes a certain amount of dedication. It wasn’t like skating in the USA, where Mom and Pop would take little Johnny down to the local park and make a day of it, was it fuck. No! Skating in the UK was punk rock. If you’d managed to keep skating through countless winters, sought out fantastic architecture on which to display your amazing skills, and well, withstood the ridicule of everyone else, you were truly punk rock.

Radar and Bootsie
Radar and Bootsie Looking Foxy

There was one particular group of skaters from Harrow. The Death Squad they called themselves. You may have caught them on the Dirty Sanchez telly show. Now these guys were truly hardcore. Both in their skating, and indeed in their lifestyle. I remember one of them, a fella’ called Dan Cates (look him up on YouTube, you won’t be disappointed) being interviewed on the telly once. He was asked about some charity event that was going on at the time. A sponsored skate, or some such rubbish. His answer has become a catchphrase of mine to this day. Old Dan turned to the camera, smiled a gap-toothed smile, adjusted his cap, and opined… “We don’t give a fuck about charity”.

Now, I’m a cynical bugger, I really am. If someone dies that I don’t know, my initial reaction isn’t, ‘Thoughts and prayers with whoever has just pegged it’. Not me. I’m more likely to just shrug, and think, ‘Who cares!’. I didn’t pray for Muamba, I don’t know him. I wouldn’t hold a candlelit vigil if another member of the royal family pegged it. I just wouldn’t .

Okay, I’m joking. Sort of. I am very cynical, but I’ve also given significant amounts of money to charity over the years. Disaster funds, cancer, Shelter, and most importantly of all for me, the NSPCC. They’ve all had a lot of my hard earned over the years. I’ve also volunteered to work for charitable organisations for free. I do a lot for charity, but I don’t like to talk about it. 

So there you go, charity. I’m all for it. Just don’t tell anyone. Now, imagine that you earned £7 per minute. That equates to £420 per hour, £3,360 per 8 hour day, £16,800 a week, £67,200 a month, and £806,400 a year. Which is of course significantly less than your average Premiership player earns. It is however somewhere around the exact amount it takes to keep Willen Hospice running. It’s a lot of money isn’t it! It’s a charity. They have to raise that money by themselves. Or hope that others will on their behalf. 

The Walking Dead
The Walking Dead

So, while Samir Nasri is no doubt bombing around the streets of Manchester (average house price £85,000) in his £330,000 Lamborghini, a group of around 10 Dons supporters walked, yes walked, to Fulham. All the while two other supporters kayaked to the very same away game. I know! How on earth does one kayak to Craven Cottage? But there you go. They did. Well at least I hope they did, as I’m writing this before the attempt was made. Gonna’ look a bit stupid if they didn’t. And if they indeed did, it was all in aid of the aforementioned good cause. And if you haven’t already, then you should give them some of your hard earned money. (Links at the foot of this piece). Because if you don’t, then you’re worse that Samir Nasri, who no one likes. 

Both attempts are truly admirable. The average person can walk somewhere around 20 miles in an 8 hour stint. I’ve no idea how far the average person can kayak in an 8 hour stint, but as you’re sitting down all the way, then it must be the easier option. Skateboarders can obviously outdo both. It’s 56 miles from stadium:mk to Craven Cottage. Therefore, two 8 hour stints would still leave you 16 miles on the last day. It’s an early start. And when you get there you have to watch MK. Not a pleasing thought. 

So there you go. They either did, or didn’t do it. But irrespective of the final outcome, massive kudos to both attempts. This from a fan base from the universally loathed Franchise FC. So while the football world heaps scorn on us, and our estranged cousins post the most bizarre and vaguely disturbing thoughts online, our fans get up off their arses (apart from the kayaks who quite literally sat on theirs all day) and actually made a difference.

So don’t be like Dan Cates, give a fuck about charity.

Walking… https://www.justgiving.com/mkdsa-mkdonswalk2016/

Kayaking… https://www.justgiving.com/Richard-Nordsted

Gers.

Fulham Away 2nd April 2016 – Match Preview

The MooCamp Radio Show Issue 2.21So it’s starting to get serious then 😉

We trek down to that London tomorrow for a match that both teams will be desperately hoping to win, and one where a loss would see the other team sitting in the bottom three come 5pm.  A draw wouldn’t be the end of the world for either, but that would leave us in the bottom three, which will undoubtedly raise the pressure on the players.  At this time of the season, this is just as much a psychological battle than a footballing one, and as our results against the teams around us have shown, we’re struggling in this one.

We’ve not been to Craven Cottage before (well at least I haven’t, so it amounts to the same thing) so the chance to tick another ground off (I think I’m in the mid-sixties of the current 92 at the moment – will need to tot up properly) is one that will be taken by a fair few of our lot   It’s expected that we’ll take around 1500-1600, which is a fairly sizeable away following by our standards.  It should be added that of those fans, there are a number who are making their journey down there as difficult as possible, so they can raise money for Willen Hospice – Bootsie and Radar by kayak and Dan, Ashley, Emmaaaaaaaaa, Tracy and others on foot.  Good luck to you all – you have both my admiration and my money, so stop asking.

So what can I tell you about Fulham then?  Well as you will know by now, here at MooCamp Towers, we consider research to be cheating, so we go with what we know.

What I know about Fulham is:

  • Jimmy Hill was their Chairman at one point, and they ended up getting relegated on the basis of a goals scored rule (as opposed to goal difference) that Jimmy introduced
  • Mohammed Al Fayed used to own them, and might still do for all I know
  • They used to have a statue of Michael Jackson outside their ground, which is perhaps the most surreal of all the football-related statues that have ever existed in these isles
  • Richard Osman of Pointless fame is a fan, and was good enough to retweet about our fans sponsored travels
  • They have a neutrals section of their ground, presumably to cater for all the tourists who can’t get into the games at clubs that they’ve heard of.  A neutral area is an interesting idea, though not one that we’d ever use of course 😉
  • Lewie’s dad Ray used to be their manager
  • They’ve never won a major trophy.  Ever.  A good opportunity for our fans to get out the silver foil and cardboard replicas of the Portiamao cup, it would seem

In preparation for the match, we spoke to Andrew at CottageConfidential and gave him three questions:

1) Sum up your season for us – how’s it gone, how does that compare to your expectations and how is it going to end?

This is a season in which most Fulham supporters thought we would be challenging for a playoff spot, instead we’re flirting with relegation. At this point so little has gone right that I’m almost resigned to relegation

2) What needs to change at your club, and what mustn’t change?

I have no idea what is wrong. The players the club have brought in have played great defense at other clubs. They get to Fulham and they simply forget how to defend. It was easy to chalk that up to bad coaching. But now that Jokanovic is in charge, it’s really hard to use that excuse. If I knew how to fix this club, I’d certainly shout it from the rooftops, but I’m just as confused as everyone else.

3) What’s your take on the whole Wimbledon move to MK and the subsequent birth of the MK Dons?

To be honest, I didn’t really understand all the anger over it for quite sometime. I’m an American, and sports teams moving is just a natural thing here. The NBA team where I live (Seattle) moved to the place where I grew up (Oklahoma). It happens enough here for it to almost become business as usual. But I’m sure the first teams that moved in this country caused just as much commotion as Wimbeldon moving. In the future, this kind of thing might happen more. It’s going to be easier for a rich guy to buy a team in a smaller local and move them to a bigger venue that it will be to invest wisely in the small club to build them up the old fashioned way. I’m not sure what rules the FA has in place to prevent this, but it’s something I could see happening more and more

As to what’s likely to happen on the pitch, that’s anybody’s guess.  We’re capable of winning this, but we’re also capable of getting  good hiding from them.  My money is on a nil-nil draw, but secretly, I think we’ll do this 2:1.

Bdum Tisch! The MooCamp Radio Show 3.13 – Listen Now!

 Download

The MooCamp Radio Show 3.13 - Listen Now!The one where we came back from our holidays. The MooCamp Radio returns with all the excitement from the games that have happened recently, which means a draw against Fulham, a draw against Wolves and a defeat against Brentford. Exciting stuff eh?

We also talk about National HOG Day, the sponsors evening, the upcoming FA cup match at the Cobblers and this week’s visit of Ipswich Town. And our post-Ipswich trip where we’re all walking to Buckingham Town in Bletchley. It all makes sense really.

Along the way we’ll get your answers to the Question of the Week, the most stunning roundabout of the week to date, a new chant, a tenuous link and genuinely loads more. It’s like if we take a few weeks off, we’ve got enough material to fill a show!

Music came from The Pixies, Longpigs and Bernard Cribbins and one of those isn’t real.

The MooCamp Radio Show – it’s like you’ve had a gap in your life, but weren’t sure what it was until we came along and filled it.

 Download

Uncle Paul is Back! The MooCamp Radio Show 3.12 – Listen Now!

The MooCamp Radio Show 3.12 - Listen now! Download

The One Where Uncle Paul Came Back For A Visit

Issue 12 of season 3 of The MooCamp Radio Show – the MK Dons Radio Show that likes standing at the best of times, but loves standing in front of the terminally seated.

We revisit the highs, lows and mediums of our trip to Brighton, the warm welcome that we received, and the seemingly endless series of discussion points to not get too heated about. We get Paul Harris to sing us a song, we get Gers to tell us a fact and we get Modders to tell us a joke to our punchline, which he managed to do remotely.

We share some fantastic Franchise Watch entries from the Brightony and Charltony people, we look forward to our upcoming matches and realise that there aren’t any, so instead we prove that we have no idea who’s likely to get called up for international duty, and who’s fit enough anyway.

Music came from Devo, Barnes and Barnes (of course), Go West for which I apologise, with a smattering of ABC bubbling under the surface.

The MooCamp Radio Show – it’s like another language, but one where you can already understand about a third of the words.

 Download