Layer down and die

Saturday 26th November – Colchester 5-0 Gills

Every now then comes a game where you can hold your head high, feel pride in your heart, kiss your badge and say `I was there when we lost to…`. To a list which includes such classics as York 7-1 in 84-5, Aldershot 6-0 in 87-8 and Wolves 6-0 in 02-03 we can now lovingly add Colchester 5-0 in 05-06. And I have to say, that it was a worse performance than any of them.

So what can one say about a display of such brain melting incompetence that it induced laughter and tears in equal measure? How can you describe a second half performance that was so laughably inept that you simply could not take your eyes off it for fear of missing another humourous gem? How can you explain the utter disdain you felt towards players you have followed up and down the land because they quite opening and clearly didn’t give a fucking toss?

Make no mistake – this was a watershed for Gillingham FC. This was the day when loyal supporters who had suffered long and, in the most part, with extreme good grace, finally cracked and told the players exactly what we thought of their efforts. This must have come as a massive wake up call to some of the squad who so comfortably imagined they could simply turn up, take the money, and do as little as possible to earn it. Of course, this was also the day when the supporters decided to make their own entertainment which brought about a record breaking number of different chants.

So, gentle reader, what of the game itself. The bare facts are these:- Colchester took a deserved lead just after the half hour. Jamie Cureton`s astute pass found Greg Halford in the sort of space not normally associated with the overcrowded South east corner. The angle was difficult, but Tony Bullock was slow to react, and when he did he got his angles all wrong, before compounding the felony by laying down and virtually inviting the Colchester player to lift the ball over him and into the gaping expanse of goal he had so generously allocated for the purpose.

The Gills were fortunate to go in at the break only a goal behind, but that good fortune was not to last, as we were 3-0 down less than ten minutes into the second period. Halford’s long range effort on 52 minutes flew straight over a statuesque Bullock’s head and into the roof of the net, and two minutes later that little shit Cureton scored against us for about the 10th different club to end the contest as a football match and commence it as a comedy turn.

On 66 minutes Cureton made it 4-0, and just four minutes later former Gills loanee Wayne Brown added another as the Gills simply disintegrated in front of our very eyes. Curiously, for a man who had previously played like Coco the Clown on acid, Tony Bullock then elected to save everything that Colchester threw at him – which was quite a lot given that by the this time the Gills defence had disappeared into a parallel universe where they could actually defend properly (well, if the theory is right and there are an infinite number of them, they must be able to do that in at least FUCKING ONE OF THEM!)

And so, despite gifting Col U at least two of their goals, and playing a large part in the rest, Mr. Bullock emerged as man of the match – or more correctly, least shit man of the match. Sadly it was his last ever game for the club but hey, at least he went out on a high!

Champagne Moment(s): The many and varied chants of the Gills support, who showed the players what passion, commitment and pride in the shirt were all about.

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