The View from the Bar

Welcome to the vast, vague hinterland between Christmas and New Year, where the only way of actually figuring out what day it is is by seeing if there’s a football match on. So, today must be Saturday then…
I hope you’ve all had a suitably relaxed / peaceful / inebriated / debauched (delete as applicable) Christmas. No doubt the mood around PO31 was suitably elevated by the result against Fareham on the 22nd. For a while there it was looking like Santa might not have quite read our Christmas wish-list correctly, what with the litany of chances that went begging, even before John McKie fired us into the lead. With the season of goodwill firmly in our minds we gave the travelling Fareham faithful something to cheer about as we staggered around like a collection of drunken uncles in allowing them to equalise, but after the break we dominated and delivered the perfect Christmas present ten minutes from time when the sharpest move of the game ended with McKie firing in a pinpoint cross and Gareth Bricknell powering a diving header into the roof of the net, sending the vast majority of the 142 crowd (and the significant number who snuck in for free after half-time) into raptures. Great stuff.
Speaking of crowds (and great stuff, as it goes), it was brilliant to have such a large crowd again for the Fareham game. It really does add so much to the atmosphere and I know the players really appreciate the support too. Our average this season is just under 130 – would be fantastic if we could raise that even more, so with a surfeit of home games coming up in 2019, do your best to bring a pal or two up to the game and let’s keep Westwood buzzing all the way to the end of the season.
Unfortunately the season of goodwill hasn’t extended as far as the SWL fixture computer, which unfortunately has scheduled our (rescheduled) annual bunfight in Brockenhurst as a midweeker on the 22nd January. It’s still possible by train from Southampton (there’s a 9.40pm departure from Brockenhurst), but it does mean we’re unlikely to turn up in our usual numbers at Grigg Lane (or The Meadens Skoda Arena as it is now somewhat comically monikered). The match at Hamble Club on 2nd February looks eminently do-able, however – so keep an eye out for future plans on that one…
Now, be the envy of your workmates… make Cowes Sports F.C. the first thing you think about every morning… Yes! The Mugs Are Here! Indeed, the long-promised merch that had begun to take on the mythical status of unicorns, bigfoot, or a warm, sunny day at Whippingham has finally been proven to actually exist. Available today for the bargain price of £4.50, and I warn you now, they’re selling like hot cakes, with 30-or-so of the 60 already accounted for, so get yours while you can.
All of which begs the question of what merch we should be looking at next? The scarves have been a roaring success (there could be a new design on the way, by the way), and the mugs are looking like selling out quick-smart, so what’s next?: matching bedspread and pillowcase set?; Vic Sanders gnomes?; Lego model of the old East Stand? Actually, I might have a go at that last one…
Looks like being a tough one today (don’t think we’ve ever beaten Baffins since they rose up to Wessex League level, so it would be nice to start now…), so make sure you get behind the lads and show plenty of support.
And before I sign off, here’s wishing everyone involved with the club a happy and healthy new year. See you all again on the 12th January for the Bournemouth game, if not before…
Enjoy the game,
Toby

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