BWFC ENGLAND WORLD CUP RUNNERS UP
If you would like to watch the video made by Keith Phipps on YouTube. Click on this link – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HW2GxcYVHXM
And in addition the professional Dutch team video can be seen here at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UnnMNFEgPw
BWFC DEFEAT HOLLAND BUT LOSE WORLD CROWN TO SCOTLAND ON SUDDEN DEATH PENALTIES!!
BWFC again represented England Over 65’s in the Super Veterans 5 a side Walking Football World Cup which was held in Bristol on May 12th.
The format was different from the previous year when BWFC won the Cup when they topped the table after a round robin of matches.
This year the two top teams had to compete in a playoff final.
England began their campaign against Wales in a bid to retain the Trophy they won 12 months ago.
After a slow start England settled into their pass and move game which stretched their opponents and the inevitable England goal arrived from the boot of Derek “Decka” Thorpe.
Result: England 1 – 0 Wales. A good steady start to the competition.
England’s second match was against Scotland, and this turned out to be a very tough encounter indeed with some very dubious tackles and overzealous challenges going unpunished by the referee who at times seemed to have no regard for the safety of the participants.
Scoring chances were scarce and when players from both sides did manage to get their shots away the two goalkeepers were at their best to frustrate the opposition. Because of this, it was probably no surprise that the game ended England 0 – 0 Scotland.
Next up for England were Canada who seemed to have recruited one or two players from the West Midlands area. Again this was a hotly contested match. Canada seemed to have done their homework on their opponents and targeted England’s strike force of Decka and Malcolm Thorp for special attention. This was a big mistake. With Barry Huntington in great form at the back, England’s John Crampton (BWFC’s answer to Martin Peters) ventured forward and ghosted in at the left side of the penalty box to sweep home the winning goal. Result: England 1 – 0 Canada.
Now it was time for the big one. England v Holland!!
Holland arrived at the competition with every intention of winning it and showed it by putting more than a little aggression into their play. They had four Dutch former full Internationals from their 1974 and 1978 World Cup Final team. One of them Kees Kist was the Winner of the 1979 European Golden Boot Award!!
England adopted a close marking strategy to the game by not giving the technically adept Dutch any time on the ball. It worked very well. England harried the Holland team out of possession time and again and then went about their own pass and move game and kept possession of the ball extremely well. Within 8 minutes England were 2 – 0 up courtesy of two goals from Decka Thorp ably assisted by every member of side. Shortly after, the Dutch pulled a goal back. Superb build up play allowed them to get within striking distance of England’s goal and Kees Kist added to his tournament tally by rifling an unstoppable shot past the England goalkeeper Keith Phipps into the far corner of the goal. The ball hit the net support and rebounded back into play. The referee pronounced no goal, much to the surprise and anger of the Dutch players. He appeared to think the shot had hit the goalpost. At this point a member of the media team from Holland covering the event appeared with a video camera and showed the referee evidence that the ball had indeed entered the goal. There was no mention in the rules of VAR being used at the Tournament but no-one in the England camp complained as they wanted to beat the Dutch fair and square. The referee then, quite rightly in everyone’s view, reversed his decision and awarded the goal to Holland making the score 2 – 1 to England. However within minutes another sustained attack by England resulted in Decka completing a well deserved Hat Trick after being on the receiving end of some rough treatment from ex World Cup team member Dick Schoenaker.
With around 3 – 4 minutes left on the referees watch Kist scored again to make it 3 – 2, but the England players did not let this deflate them and carried on fighting to the end to record a memorable victory.
Team Player / Manager John Limbourne said “This was probably the best performance I have seen from this side. We played very well last year to win the trophy, but had to be at our very best this year to beat the Dutch and qualify for the Final and that is exactly what we were”
Result: England 3 – 2 Holland.
The win over Holland guaranteed England a place in the Final against the Scots irrespective of the result against their last opponents Gibraltar. England took this opportunity to rest three players in this game, Malcom, Decka, and Barry Huntington who was nursing a sore knee from the first match against Wales. Although hampered by this he played a sterling part in holding England together at the back. Malcolm had been battered all through the tournament and deserved a rest. In came Player Manager John Limbourne, Del Whitmore and Dave Burgess.
England played very well defensively and in attack, but could make little headway against a surprisingly well organised Gibraltar team. Towards the end of the game a shot from John Limbourne was destined for the top corner but was deflected by the upraised knee of an opponent.
Result: England 0 – 0 Gibraltar.
FINAL: England V Scotland
And so to the final match of this year’s competition against the “Old Enemy “
The rules of this competition seemed to allow shoulder charges, heavy tackles from the side and also SLIDING BLOCKS!! Scotland took every opportunity to take advantage of this in an effort to knock England out of their impressive stride.
In what turned out to be a rather feisty match England matched their opponents desire to win the ball in all areas of the pitch and let their superior passing game take its toll on the Scots.
However, after pressure from England and one or two good saves by the Scottish goalkeeper, Scotland took advantage of some slack marking by England and their very agile centre forward took his one on one chance to put Scotland up 1 – 0.
England then made two substitutions with John Limbourne taking over from Malcolm Thorp and Dave Burgess coming on for John Crampton.
The fresh legs seemed to make a difference as England continued to attack and with 3 minutes left on the referees watch, John Limbourne was left in space and he made no mistake with a powerful left foot shot that beat the goalkeeper at the near post. 1 – 1 and all to play for but unfortunately Father Time caught up with them and the match went to penalties to decide the winners.
The penalties stage of the match finished all square at 2 – 2 with both sides having 1 penalty saved by the respective goalkeepers.
The match then had to be decided by sudden death penalties. England had their first penalty saved when the Scottish goalkeeper deflected a goal bound effort over the bar. Scotland converted their next kick to win the tournament and take the World Cup back north of the border.
Player Manager John said after the game “I am proud of all the players today. Everyone gave everything they had. We were unbeaten in the round robin stage of the competition for the second successive year and we were only beaten in the final on sudden death penalties. Well done to Scotland, but the trophy is only on loan until Paris 2019 “
Some consolation for England was that ironically, they beat Scotland 4 – 3 in the separate Penalty Shoot Out Competition to retain the Trophy they won in 2017.