Monday, 18 August 2008

A game on a Saturday...You must be joking!!!

Buckingham Athletic 0-1 Sport London e Benfica
Spartan South Midlands League Division 1Saturday 16th August 2008
Stratford Fields

This was my first Saturday game since April 5th, the day before I started working nights at a well known supermarket. I made a conscious effort to get up early so I could get to a game and rose at 1pm. This comparing to the previous Saturday when I didn’t get out of bed till 5pm! A quick look at some fixtures and I decided on Buckingham Athletic in the Spartan South Midlands League Division 1. This is not a league that I have frequented very often in the past yet here I am about to attend my second game in a row in this division. As the previous post states I attended the New Bradwell – Ampthill game on the Tuesday and thoroughly enjoyed the game. Buckingham are one of two teams in the town, the other - `Town ply their trade in the United Counties League Division 1 which is the same level in the non-league pyramid as ‘Athletic’. I visited `Town last October in a match that ended in a 1-1 draw against Huntingdon. `Athletic play on the Stratford Road (A422) that goes south east towards Milton Keynes. The drive down was easy and uneventful with the sat-nav taking us down the M1 to junction 15, then onto the A508 towards Stony Stratford and then finally onto the A422 which led us into Buckingham. The time / distance given on Google maps UK is 1 hour 8 minutes / 54 miles. The ground is slightly hidden by large conifer trees on the left hand side before you reach the town centre. Despite being my second visit to watch football I have yet to have a look round the town centre so I cannot tell you much about the place. Below is a few links on the town and district itself:

Buckingham University -
Visit Buckinghamshire -
Buckingham Rugby Club -

The ground has an open feel about it, despite being on the edge of town, with a stand on the Stratford Road side of the ground. Luckily the rain that was forecast never materialised in this part of the country so we didn't need the raincoat and / or umbrella! The only goal of the game came on the 2nd minute when the visitors were awarded a free kick on their left hand side and from the resulting kick the ball was headed home by Albert de Matos. The homesters didn't let their heads drop and felt they should have been awarded a penalty a few minutes later, the referee though waved away their claims. Personally I thought it should have been awarded having an excellent view of the incident. A lucky escape for Benfica came on the 13th minute when the keeper gave away possession when just outside the penalty area, only for a first time shot to come back off the post. Six minutes later it was role reversal when Buckingham had their own escape as the visiting no. 10 hit the keeper's left hand post with an angled shot after being put through. The remainder of the half was competitive with the visitors being given very little room and time to play their short passing game I saw at Bedford last year. A credit must go to Buckingham as they had obviously done their homework. The second half was again competitve with both sides evenly matched. Chances were created at either end with both keepers making saves, the visitors through probably created the more clear cut ones and should have made the game safe on 71 minutes when the previously mentioned no. 10 missed a sitter from what seemed no more than eight yards.

Overall an enjoyable couple of hours, though the game deserved more goals. Still no 0-0 since Easter Monday 2006 so can't complain.

Attendance: 29 (football mitoo)

club websites:

Buckingham Athletic:
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