Famed for its pears and distinctive sauce, it was fitting that Penn Colts East were in such tasty form in the heart of Worcestershire this morning.
Against a mighty fine Worcester Colts side, the Green Machine were mouthwateringly good, notching up 4 goals against a team who had barely lost a game.
In winning for a second successive week, the Green Machine not only underlined their Alfa Romeo credentials, but reinforced their tag as boasting one of the meanest defences in the league.
Following games against the mighty Halesowen Town Colts, Trysull Tigers (x2), PS Olympic and now Worcester Colts, only three goals have been conceded in open play. Manager Ben Smallman – admittedly with a maths ‘D’ GCSE to his name – makes that over 4 hours of football.
The opening goal was a thing of beauty. George Evans whipping in a corner to the napper of Harry Cox, who powered home a header into the top bin. Maybe not one for the NHS health advisors, but frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.
The game ebbed and flowed with both sides creating chances. Penn’s determination epitomised by Lennie Brown up front, whose insatiable work ethic spread throughout his teammates.
The second period threatened to go the way of the high flying hosts, not least when their dangerous number 9 smashed home from distance.
Thankfully for Penn, the Sky Blues didn’t bargain for star man Harry Fallon, who collected a neat ball from the assured Arthur Smallman to dink a delightful shot over a stranded keeper to restore the lead.
Moments later it was 3-1. The Cat Henry Buchan, more like a lion with every passing week, enacted his own ‘Scorpion Kick’ to induce memories of ‘that’ goal in ‘that’ cup final against Old Wulfs, if not Olivier Giroud for the Arsenal.
Buchan then turned Butcher to slice through the Sky Blue defence to slot home a fourth, from yet more incredible Harry Fallon work.
But it wasn’t over by a long chalk. William Clarke, fresh from his sick bed, repelled many an attack with exemplary handling. Faultless once again.
Kyan Payne continued to dominate from the back, too. Whether he thought he’d be a defensive linchpin when he joined Penn Colts is debatable. But the fact he’s one of the most indispensable members of the squad speaks volumes for his outrageous progression in a green shirt.
In front of him, Arthur Smallman shimmered once more, featuring majestic first touch and cool, calm distribution from the back.
Then there was skipper Harry Cox. The leader. The legend. The Kaiser. In black boots and 1980s shorts (and strictly no vest) he was a mingled Bryan Robson and Mike Bailey (look him up folks!), scoring the first and leading by example.
Georgie Evans, oozing confidence and courage, easily won his personal battle and sounded gloriously vocal in his best ever game in green, boasting glorious High Definition vocal chords. A man of the match winner.
On the other flank, Harry Partridge, aka ‘Tenacious P’, put in a shift to make his coaches proud. Like sugar for the soul, Pea was selfless to a fault, first to every tackle and displayed every virtue that makes his manager so proud of him. Mentally, he was getting his head around a game in goal to help his teammates out in Clarkey’s absence before kick off, making this all the more impressive.
Quite which boy makes me more proud is impossible to say. Clarkey for insisting on playing through his medication or Pea for taking one in the net for the team. Both boys a credit.
Then there was Lennie Brown. A majestic athlete, featuring boundless energy, pace and a downright refusal to give in – even when the odds were stacked against him. His work rate laid the foundations for this win.
Final words though, for Henry Buchan and Harry Fallon. The former notched 2 more goals and refused to be beaten before that. The latter scored one, set the other three up and in fantasy football terms, was worth a good 30 points.
Or in manager Ben Smallman’s terms, like a dollop of Worcestershire Sauce on a slice of cheese toast.