Arjowiggins Stoneywood Park, North Region SJFA, First Division, 3/8/21
Entrance – £5 me £0 Wee Man
Attendance – 48(twice counted)
Pie – Didn’t bother(rare)
Pint – N/A
Stoneywood Parkvale Football Club
Founded – 2016
Nickname – The Vale
Honours – None
Random Fact – The club impressively reached the last 16 of the 2019/20 Scottish Cup before being defeated 4 v 0 in Dyce by eventual semi-finalists Beith (the tournament was abandoned due to corona).
Top of the table clash twenty minutes from my house. Aye go on then. The evening started with cruising round Dyce getting fuel and a wee food shop done pre-game, this while not realising the bloody game had in fact started, I think that’s a first for the two of us. It kicked off at 19.00 and not half past as stated online, so our 19.15 arrival was late but not really critical as by all reports not much had occurred so far.
Arjowiggins Park is basic in appearance. It is a fenced in pitch(easy to watch without paying) with a wee enclosure “The Keith Millar Stand” and dugouts. But it has its quirks. First of all the first thing you see when you walk in is the god awful eyesore TECA building which as good as ruins what would have been a decent view. Then their is the fact it is found directly under the flight path of ABZ and given less than a mile proximity the traffic is very low, so low you feel the rumble of the turbines in your feet, which was to Wee Man’s delight. There is also a nice wee touch to the ground its self which I was a big fan of. In three corners, there are five seat bothies which look to be made from reused pallet wood or something along those lines. These are reserved for season ticket holders. There is also a great view of the city too which we only got half of as corona rules prevented movement right around the park. But the Northfield Mast was more than in view and seemed to loom over despite being almost 4 miles away. Not the greatest ground but its a new one on me and this fact and the ticking of Rothie off last week made me realise that I am only four grounds away from watching a match at every North Region SJFA ground now.
The fitba in the first half was pretty dire with not much going on. It was end to end without much of note in either final third. There were a decent couple of moments, but not much. The Vales best chance was when a decent passing move up the park led to a pinpoint ball landing at the striker who as he was away to shoot was robbed by the defender who nicked it off his toe. A great piece of last ditch defending which any later and it would almost definitely have been one-nil to the home side. Sunnybank had the better of the chances and will rue not taking one of their two decent chances. The first was actually very strong goalkeeping from the home keeper when he not once but twice got down in swift fashion to save from under ten yards, with a third effort from the Black and Whites 11 being cleared off the line. The next chance was a bigger and more scoreable with the number 4 finding himself with the freedom of Dyce around ten yards out. He took the touch well then went for the melting it as hard as possible option when he could have picked his corner. High and handsome was to be the outcome. Poor stuff from the 4 and the half time whistle went not long after, and it was poor stuff overall in honesty.
HT 0 v 0
The second half could not have been as bad as the first and within two minutes the opener was scored and it was for the visitors. Number 5 had made his way up for a corner and was left unmarked for the whole set peice sequence. The ball landed right at him leaving him to mash the ball home at pace with his head. A simple goal for Sunnybank and a completely avoidable one for Stoneywood Parkvale. This fired the game into action and The Vales 10 was unlucky not to equalise when he beat man after man, with his 18 yard effort just avoiding the bottom left corner of the Sunnybank goal. At the other end the visiting 7 should have doubled the lead when he let fly from inside the box, however he got his bearings all wrong and sent it feebly wide. Just after this I heard a rustle behind us, it was the unfortunate SP committee member finally finding the ball that went out the park into the waist high gorse and jagged bushes in the first half, he must have been at it for half an hour. Sucks to be him. Stoneywood made a couple of changes and one made an immediate impact. The 12 received the ball on the touchline then in the most ungraceful fashion, bulldozed through a battalion of players in quick succession, at a guess, six. It looked clumsy and bullish but he kept the ball at his feet somehow and when he saw a gap he hit an incredibly delicate finish which went against the build up to the strike, but it curled across the goal into the totally stranded Sunnybank keepers right hand corner. A cracking finish and deserved due to the determination of the run. The Sunnybank keeper was not stranded soon after when he pulled of a fantastic save at full stretch. The SP number 9 did well to create space and played in the 4 who did everything right with the effort but unfortunately was met with a top drawer save from the big injured keeper(I noticed early doors he wasn’t kicking due to his injury). The winner came with around fifteen minutes to go and if I was the Sunnybank manager I would have been apoplectic. His 22 decided to foul the attacking Vale player who was away to run into three black and white defenders. He was booked for his troubles but it was a challenge that was beyond rash, it was bloody idiotic as the Vale man was more than likely running into trouble. Then guess what, the resulting free kick was struck through the wall(as I said apoplectic) and nestled in the same corner as the equaliser did. A crazy decision to make the challenge, a terrible wall and three points staying under the planes and choppers. Sunnybank could have and should have equalised but instead created miss of the game late on. The 11 had skinned a couple of Vale men out on the right an put a ball right on the onrushing number 9 for a tap in but somehow he managed to completely miscue and send wide. That was about that for our entertainment in this full mouthed encounter* .We may have missed the first fifteen minutes but it may have been a blessing as the following thirty was as dull as I have seen in a long time. But ill take the second half. Entertaining, and at the end of the day that’s what we want.
* I played fitba for about 25 years and have watched for 30 and I swear this takes the record for most swearing I have ever heard at a match. Players, dug outs, fans. It was obscene. I swear a lot and I couldn’t believe the language. The over head traffic must have seen the blue air hovering over the ground. A truly impressive next level display of profanity.
Me 198, Wee Man 64