Ferard WAGS spotted in the crowd.
SC Basel Nord vs Ferard
Sitting in second place in the fourth league just behind the undefeated Munchenstein, Fc Ferard were the visitors to Rankhof. Not since Mehmed the Conqueror decided he fancied getting himself a little holiday home in Constantinople have you seen so many overly-aggressive, walking, talking haircuts descend into one place. Approximately 5000 males (I use the word male loosely), took to the touchline to support Ferard. Fresh from ending the Byzantine Empire, equipped with nothing but jeans with holes, an awful taste in music and one eyebrow which they share between them, they were there to face the mighty Basel Nord Ultras.
The Ultras led by Mad-Dog Marcel, who was sat on one end of a bench (it was counterbalanced by a forklift on the other end) Marcel wasn’t his usual self, mainly due to the 97 bottles of Magners he drank celebrating his birthday the night before, Alles Gute zum Geburstag Marcel. There was a farewell to Sandy, our half-Brazilian/half-English maestro. Sandy who invented love, Instagram and hashtags was leaving for America. Best wishes for the new job and the future mate, from all the Bears. Also Sandy, if you manage to bump into Trump (he’s the ambitious hot dog salesman who escaped from a rural Alabama fairground, stole an unattended wig, hopped a freight train to Atlantic City and never looked back), please ask him about the Golden Fleece that is his hair, it consumes a lot of my time thinking about it. It doesn’t appear to come from any starting point or go in any direction and you cannot stare at it for too long, it’s like staring at the sun. Sorry got distracted there. The Good Doctor Bryan was also in attendance with his trademark sunglasses and Dom the moral compass of shady global conglomerates, had turned up en masse with the family, preparing for their trip to see Beauty and the Beast. By this I am not referring to when Nacho and Armands walked out of the changing rooms together.
Right, enough of that, let’s get this over with as quickly as possible.
Hunt Measor John Bryan
Milan Juan Joe© Luca Nacho
From the start you could see that Ferard are a team pushing for promotion, they were comfortable on the ball and there movement upfront and on the wings was superior to anyone else the Bears had faced this season. Yet Basel Nord is not the team it was in the first half of the season, the team is far more settled, organised and the defence especially looked like it could hold its own against a strong Ferard attack.
The Bears neutralised most attacks with Measor and John boy looking superior dealing with anything in the air at the back. Unfortunately chances were few and far between for the Bears, a lot of balls were getting played long but rather than over the opposition full-back they were straight down the throat of the Ferard centre-half who had no problem clearing these away with ease. With the Bears full-backs obsolete and with no possession of note, the Bears simply battled away and both teams struggled to impose themselves on the game. Ferard kept the ball better but didn’t look like breaking through the Bears defence, and although the Bears had struggled to keep the ball and play the short pass, they had a few moments where they looked dangerous – their final ball and finish in the final third of the pitch let them down.
The Bears, for a pleasant change had a competent referee and the first half saw our Turkish brothers pick up a few yellow cards, mainly for kicking and screaming, as and when something didn’t go the way they liked. Our skipper Joey in the midst of the battle in midfield also picked himself up a yellow card.
Alas, after 43 minutes the Bears who had played a very strong, high defensive line, pushed up and thought they had executed another great offside trap. They turned and saw three Ferard players ranging between 5-10 metres offside – this was to be their undoing. The players they saw were so far offside the back four simply raised its hands and stopped, waiting for the referees whistle, at this point, one second ahead in his mind, a midfielder from Ferard simply kept sprinting and ran through as the offside players simply raised their hands showing they were not interfering with play. It was too late to catch-up with him already being a couple of metres ahead and he made a cool finish to take Ferard into the second half in the lead.
Basel Nord 0-1 Ferard
The second half kicked off and the game resumed in much the same fashion as the first half. Jock had been introduced to the game towards the end of the first half but despite his incredible performance the week before, he couldn’t bring that spark to the Bears and they again were wasteful in possession.
Knowing they were losing the Bears started to push forward more and more, playing long balls down the wing and getting the ball forward as quickly as possible – what they lacked in composure they made up for in endeavour. Persisten pressure forced a corner and a good delivery from Luca saw the ball find its way to Joey, coming in at such pace the skipper turned his header over the crossbar the sigh of disappointment from the Bears players and fans, matched only by the sigh of relief from their opponents.
In the 60th minute the Bears were applying pressure when Ferard struck on the counter-attack, three Ferard players racing away on the break. Their movement split the defence and the ball found its way to the by-line as they capitalised on the high-line of the Bears. The ball was played with pace back along the face of the goal, the dive of Armands couldn’t get near it, and the little legs of Hunt couldn’t reach the ball as it found their striker who smashed it past Hunt into the corner.
Basel Nord 0-2 Ferard
Jimmy had taken to the pitch to replace Bryan on the left and Xevi had come on to try and give more options upfront as the Bears looked for some way back into the game. As Ferard sat deeper and the Bears pushed on, forcing more and more free-kicks and corners, it looked as if there would be a ray of hope for the Bears as Joey smashed in a low volley from a corner. The ball flew towards the bottom corner of the goal, as Juan managed to leap out of the way it looked dead certain to be a goal. Now let’s be clear, I am prone to the odd drop of exaggeration but this goalkeeper was carrying a few extra kilos – he was an aisle blocker. His very, very generously proportioned body used every bit of the gravity it struggles with on a daily basis and he got down brilliantly to make a fantastic save around the post.
The game was decided 10 minutes later around the 70th minute mark, I’ll be honest things are pretty much a blur at this moment for most of the defence but all I remember is that people were screaming offside loudly or maybe that was the second goal. I don’t know and apologies for the shoddy reporting but I had had enough of Ferard constantly screaming and crying at this point. When their whinging turned to them laughing in delight as they scored their third on the break I was finished with remembering their goals and started focussing on not ever having to think about them ever again.
A quick thank you from all of the Bears to Armands for his yellow card on the 77th minute for running flat out into the striker of Ferard. When the dust settled, the look of regret on the face of the Ferard striker (who hadn’t noticed the world’s fastest fridge sprinting at him) was obvious. Armands, who claims he’s in his twenties despite being 42 years old, is an enigma for the Bears fans, the question on everyone’s lips though, is he growing or are his clothes shrinking?
The highlight of the match came just before the lowlight. In the 91st minute the Bears scored – step forward Mr James Richardson, hailing from the cultural metropolis of Sunderland. Jimmy/JimmyCarter/Rambo is a touch player, I don’t mean that his touch of the ball is that wonderful, I just mean he will touch all of their players at some point, and you don’t want that touch. You do not want that, trust me. If Marvin and Kaiser were to have a love child who had spent his early years hanging about Mordor with only Chuck Norris for company, well this would be Jimmy. Don’t let his big smile and his understated demeanour fool you, if you piss him off he will kill you then take your mother out for a lovely seafood dinner and never text her back.
A lovely corner got whipped in and Jimmy who is formidable in the air, attacked the ball and smashed in a header from around the penalty spot into the far-right corner of the goal. Should be noted, that for a Sunderland fan his celebration was very Shearer like. Congrats on your first goal for the Bears Jimmy.
Basel Nord 1-3 Ferard
The 92nd minute came, and I promised myself not to write about this as there is nothing funny to be taken from it. Still, we often speak about other teams and we frequently have a dig at teams like Ferard, this might explain a little where this animosity comes from, as I wish I could say this doesn’t happen each time we play. John had played well all game and had quite simply kept one of their players in his pocket, on the 92nd minute this player waited until the ball was at the other end of the pitch then spat in his face and ran off. The only thing fortunate about this situation for John was that you can’t catch AIDS twice in a row, so he should be fine. In the following commotion the referee simply ended the game as the number 13 ran off to hide amidst the group of haircuts and mouths on the side of the pitch. Apparently Jimmy after scoring was in such a good mood he offered to kill the number 13 for a massively discounted price compared to what he normally charges. I for one, is more than happy to start up a crowd-funding page for this.
Polizei sketch of said incident.
Overall, Ferard won because they were the better team on the day in terms of how they moved the ball. They were fast and strong, with a big squad and they should get promoted this year as they are the best side we have faced in the league. The Bears are physically strong and organised but we didn’t create enough chances for our strikers and being wasteful with the ball meant the midfield had to spend the day chasing shadows. Once you are behind chasing a game, getting hit on the counter is always a possibility.
Still, the Bears remain the Bears, we fought well, kept our heads and I imagine we’ll bump into Ferard again one of these days.
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