Well done GFA and Craig

THEY were nervous about going cap in hand to Jersey, but the GFA summoned the character perhaps previous administrations would not have and posed the question that had to be asked for the integrity of the biggest football match in the Channel Islands.

THEY were nervous about going cap in hand to Jersey, but the GFA summoned the character perhaps previous administrations would not have and posed the question that had to be asked for the integrity of the biggest football match in the Channel Islands.

‘Do you mind if we push back the Muratti final? See, we are in a bit of a sticky situation as if we push ahead we will have to field a second team and nobody will want to come and watch. It will hurt us both in the pocket.’

Well... I’m sure the language was a good deal more formal than the above, but that was the message that hardly needed disguising and the Inter-Insular Committee, the actual people that run the Muratti competition, agreed to the request.

Sanity in football, I am going to have to sit down.

The role that Jersey team bosses Craig Culkin and Dave Kennedy, his assistant, played in this, cannot be under-estimated.

They did not have to come out and say, ‘hold on, we don’t want to play the Guernsey B team, the integrity of the game should be preserved’.

But they did and we should applaud their stance because there will have been plenty of Jersey coaches down the years who will have pushed ahead and been only too happy to take advantage.

Across the islands the old guard will no doubt be irritated and I can understand why, but they simply have to realise that the entire footballing landscape has changed. This is not 1955 any more. The world is moving on apace and new ideas, new opportunities open and football, like other sports, needs to be brave enough to tinker.

The likes of Culkin and Kennedy can see that what is happening in Sarnian football as being positive for the sport and, I’m sure, would love to see Jersey follow the Green Lions onto the UK pyramid.

I hope for the sister island’s sake that Jersey do hop on the same competitive route because it will rescue their domestic game from sliding mediocrity and they will have begun the fightback against the new heavyweight in Jersey sport, rugby, which has shown everybody the way.

This is a good day for CI football and thanks Jersey.

*

WEDNESDAY was a miserable night, not least if you were a Rovers player or follower.

The thickest brand of drizzle was blowing across the already sodden Track from first whistle to last. But the game was played, Bels got the three points they wanted to stay on course for a seventh Priaulx League title.

Just seven league games to go for Glyn Smith’s men. And if star player Craig Young is sidelined for a lengthy period, at least Bels’ season is very advanced and the impact of losing a key performer is minimised in comparison to a club like North, who still have 13 to play, plus cup games.

Bels have, it could be said, not always been so keen to put their pitch at risk, but to their credit, and also groundsman Paul Franklin, they have got more games played in this most miserable of winters, than I imagined they would.

The players have, as it happens, made the most of the situation and they remain strong favourites for the championship in many people’s eyes, including my own.

By highlighting Bels’ positive approach it will, probably, infuriate others at a perceived insinuation that they have been mollycoddling their grounds.

But that’s not the intention and not the case.

Clearly St Martin’s have drainage problems that past generations of St Martin’s players and followers would have considered unimaginable.

Blanche Pierre Lane was always the driest pitch in the island, up there with the most hardy of them all, Delancey.

Vale Rec, too, have often belied the natural swampy surroundings they were dealt when the decision was made to make the Corbet Field their home ground leaving North at their higher pitch across the Grand Fort Road. So many North games have been lost this season that immediately the assumption is that they have been unduly careful and, as a consequence, paid for it.

But closer examination of the list of postponements proves that has not been the case. North have probably been a tad unlucky in that many of their scheduled away games – five since the start of November – did not beat the weather.

Consider that alongside the four home postponements in the same period and you have the reason why their season is less advanced than Bels, unable to put any pressure on their big rivals through little fault of their own.

All these little things make a difference in the course of a championship chase when invariably, the top team gets the rub of the green, the bottom one no luck at all, as we have seen again this winter.

This season, Bels have made a lot of their own luck and, it gives me no pleasure to say it, Rovers compounded their ill-fortune by bad preparation and planning last summer.

*

JOHN WATSON has won a second term of office as president of the Guernsey Kart and Motor Club, holding off a close challenge from Karl Marshall, his vice.

Marshall, I am fairly sure, will get his chance to take charge of this highly successful club responsible for much of the road racing scene, motocross and karting, but Watson has unfinished business and he has some big plans which will only further raise the profile for motorsport and provide added opportunities for an impressive bunch of hardened and so committed sports people.

And if anyone needed proof of the racers’ love of what they do and how it is managed, how about noting that 115 went along to the AGM.

GREAT to see a couple of youngsters making their mark in the GFC squad this past few weeks.

Joe Alvarez, 19, James Hamon, 17, and let’s not forgot the ‘ancient’ Nigel Hutton, 22, make a nonsense of the suggestion that the Green Lions do not develop youngsters.

Well they do and it is not their fault if some of the island’s better under-18s do not challenge themselves and get along to training, which is the only avenue for any of their players to get involved on match day.

I am certain it is not a closed shop and the coaching team of Tony Vance and Colin Fallaize would love to see a crop of hungry under-18s pushing for recognition.

Comments for: "Well done GFA and Craig"

laurie carre

more snide remarks, is there nobody at the press that can teach rob to report without them.

Blue

So this week it's the biggest football match in the Channel Islands is it? Bit different last week when it was the past and Guernsey(GFC) had far more important things to focus on. Tripe Batiste, absolute tripe. If Rex Bennett could read the durge you churn out week after week.....

Spot on again Laurie, this soapbox is getting beyond a joke with nothing but back biting

Johno

Your your a little bit sensitive aren't you boys. Can't see anything 'snide' about this report, it's just reporting, get over it!

laurie carre

johno. all about opinions you have said, but wont turn this into a saga,just read robs column again, but i was brought up on rex bennett reporting,so i accept i was spoilt, the best and rest come to mind.

Johno

Hi Laurie

I too was brought up on Rex Bennett and agree he was an excellent reporter, but things do move on and reporting I'm sure you'll agree has changed a lot over the years.

Blue

The only thing that has changed over the years is the integrity of the reporting which is my personal opinion.

What Rex reported on was what he saw before him. He certainly didn't try to 'stir things up' via his column.

Ex Northerner

I'm confused, on Saturday on the radio I distinctly heard Garry Cortez saying the reason for putting the Muratti back was to allow both Guernsey AND Jersey to complete their domestic seasons and also play the Upton.

Accordingly to Mr Batiste and his band of brainwashed followers the reason is purely down to GFC, so who's telling porkies?

Does anyone want to bet that GFC's league matches won't be finished by May 18th?

GFCFan

Ex Northerner

The CCL will need toe be finished before the 18th as any extrnsion to the season has to be done with the agreement of the FA. This is so they can decide on relegation and promotion allocations. As of course the pymarid is nationwide it is unliley they would agree to an extension for one league/club as this would screw up the entire program nationwide.

Gurn

None of you think of the good that GFC do for the Island, last week full 40 mins of nothing but praise for GFC on Radio 5, and the fact that clubs that have played us at home are impressed with The Island, team members will return on holidays if we have any hotel left,which another point that you should all get on your soap boxes about.

Ex Northerner

Gurn

Absolutely, the island will soon be overrun with these visitors and the economic benefit to Guernsey will be enormous.

No doubt this argument will be trotted out when it comes to the taxpayer being asked to spend hundreds of thousands (if not more) on improving GFC's facilities. Absolute bunkum of course, but then again so is most of the tosh we have seen so far by the illustrious sports editor.

JJ Lehto

Gurn, I think most people in Guernsey think that GFC is a great project, that the players themselves are keen to play at a higher level, that it should hopefully mean we beat the crapauds every year in the Murati and very good for the island in general. You only have to look at the crowds each week to see that the negative comments on here are from the minority.

But everyone is entitled to their opinion, and some of the people who doubt GFC (such as Laurie) do make valid points.

Ex Northerner

That's an interesting grasp on numbers you have there JJ.

Based on the crowds "each week" (we'll leave aside the 11, yes that's right 11, week gap in between home games) approximately 98.5% of islanders choose not to attend GFC matches. Quite a significant minority I'm sure you'll agree, and one whose views will hopefully be taken into account when the begging bowl comes out for taxpayer funding, which it undoubtedly will.

JJ Lehto

I don't agree with the the taxpayer giving any funds to GFC beyond what is given to other sports and I will be a staunch opponent if this happens.

But you seem to have a more interesting grasp on numbers. How many other sporting events in the CI attract 1000+ spectators on a weekly basis? Does that make all sports just for the minority?

And if you compare the attendances at your beloved Priaulx games to the whole island population, we may as well just turn all the pitches into car parks.

Ex Northerner

Dear old JJ, once again you prove the level of intellect amongst Rob the Baptist's followers......

First of all, GFC does not attract "1000+ spectators on a weekly basis", that's just a simple fact. Secondly, your phrase "beyond what is given to other sports" is an interesting one, and doesn't make much sense. Surely it's football in general that should be compared to other sports, rather than one football club?

And lastly, of course all sports are "for the minority" if you are measuring those who take part against those who don't. Simple enough for you?

Johno

JJ

Couldn't agree more. Whether views are positive or negative it has certainly got people talking about local football again, which can only be good!

Rec'ite

Hate this arguement about crowd numbers!! 1,000 max and falling. What about the 60,000 that don't go? By very rough numbers 1.6% of our small population think the project is good. No doubt the states will need to chuck money at it at some point too (At least on the pitch). Its not a bad experiment but built on a shoddy foundation of finances and being against the interests of the majority and youth.

To be honest i don't mind GFC, I'm totally indifferent, but i watch the murratti every year on the same date so if its been moved for GFC i'll be fuming as i'll miss the rearranged date. More people watch the Murratti than GFC by far so they should come first (I acknowledge that GFC has not been given as the reason but lets face it it is).

Andy Le P

Petty snide digs at those that do not agree with your opinion....

Only time will tell on youth development but for me Youth emcompasses 100s of kids (under 18). To say one may or may not be better off for being a regular sub is missing the point for me.

laurie carre

hello alias johno. are you saying that reporting standards have dropped, or how does reporting facts change, whether now or in a hundred years. ANDY LE P EXACTLY. GURN. WHO WOULDNT ENJOY A FREE WEEKEND IN A GOOD HOTEL.

valeite

Oh no Rex Bennett was not biased or anything, he did not care who the North beat, his own phrase not mine.

Johno

Laurie

I'm not saying that the standard had dropped, just that everything changes in time. Very cheap shot talking about a free weekend in a luxury hotel. They are giving up time with their families, particularly with mid week games where some of them are giving up a days wages. What about SOME of the Priaulx clubs where players can,t even commit to a nights training

Ex N

Your post doesn't even warrant a comment!

Jimbo

Johno

I agree with you. Laurie, I normally sympathise with most of your views but I'm not at all impressed with that comment of yours about free nights away in a hotel when playing away. You don't seem to have any idea of the sacrifices that these guys, many of whom have wives, girlfriends, young children, make in terms of training and midweek trips away, often giving up a day or half day of work and having to makeup the time. Sorry but that did NOT happen in your day.

If you are really bothered about youth football development, then take a look at today's results page.

Under-16 league: Sylvans 11 Rangers 0

Under-14 league: VakeRec 12 Bels 0, Sylvans 14 St Martins 0, Rovers 6 St Martins 0

Corbet Cup: Vale Rec Green 2 Rovers 10, North 0 Vale Rec Yellow 6, Rovers 0 Sylvans 6

Mismatches and one-sided games galore, from which nobody benefits. How on earth is that good for youth football development?

About time the GFA got to grips with this and started creating more even age group leagues, otherwise young players at some teams will go through their most important development years with perhaps only a quarter or a third of their games each season being remotely competitive.

So Laurie, instead of continually whinging about how GFC is damaging local football, how about doing something more constructive and trying to solve a far more obvious problem? These are our future Priaulx players, future Muratti players and future GFC players after all. Personally, I'd take them out of the minis at age 11 and for the GFA's youth overseers to allocate them to clubs between 11 and 16 to ensure competitive leagues. Then at age 16 they would be free to sign for their club of choice.

Shed Ender

Laurie, Northener and co; just imagine what your beloved game of football would have been like in the 1960s if those who ran the game wanted to keep how it was run in in the early 1900s?

That's right your harking back to a time that was 40-50 yrs ago!! If you like old journalism, old football etc. go to the Priaulx Library where you can find stuff that is even older to salivate over.

Every generation thinks 'their time' is the best, whether it's 50s Rockabilly, 70s Glam Rock or 90s Rave.

Time moves on I'm afraid, and in 50 yrs time GFC will be an outdated project that will have been replaced by something else in Island football, and no doubt there will be similar whingers going on about the 'new' changes that have been brought about.

laurie carre

johno. i dont do cheap shots, i was refering to the uk teams and people coming over on holiday. if they dont train they shouldnt play

GFCFan

That is exactly the policy that GFC have in place.

laurie carre

shed-ender, obviously a new fan.and im sure wont be about in 40/50 years supporting football. i am grateful that i have been involved for many years,and successfully at club and island level.i have been lucky enough to work with and watch some great players,you hang around long enough and you will be able to say the same.i wont go into the technical reasons that i fear for the future of all football,you im sure wouldnt understand,noname and possibly chelsea fan, says it all. just charged up the wheelchair and popping up to the priaulx library to find some interesting reading

laurie carre

jimbo, i refer to my answer to johno, i wasnt refering to gfc players, i was talking about uk teams and people coming to gsy on holiday ect. totally agree with your points on youth football, the question i would ask is that when i was involved in football there were many good coaches involved at youth level, and all of the great players i saw come through were developed at youth level. You tell me what has happened ? I do feel that i dont whinge,i like you feel changes must be made at youth level, i dont blame gfc,but i feel that the press do nothing to support youth football,but fill the pages with gfc, and i cant see how that helps gsy football as a whole

Jimbo

Laurie

Thanks for the clarification. It appears that I wasn't alone in misinterpreting your earlier post re hotels. Apologies for that.

Not sure about your comments on youth football. All of the current GFC squad except Mackay came through despite rather than because of the local youth system. In your day I think there were probably more high quality "imports" playing for Guernsey, such as Laurence Graham, Andy McMillan, Johnny Reid, Drew Pollock, Brian Knight etc who were outstanding players but did not come through local youth football

laurie carre

thanks jimbo, yes we had some outstanding none locals, but i am talking about the recent past, and i am talking about strength in depth, you are as aware as i am that many of the gfc squad in the not to distant future will be past their best, and at island and gfa and gfc level i see problems. i would love to be able to help raise standards at youth level, but my life is ,im sure you are aware totally different now, and age doesnt come into it.

GFCFan

Don't the Press have a midweek pullout that covers all youth sport? I would say there is more coverage of youth sport now than say 20 years ago?

Johno

Laurie

Point taken on hotels etc.

Jimbo

Very good point about the "imports" you could probably add quite a few more to the list!

I'm sure we would agree though, that they all contributed to the local game, lets face it without Dessie Black we would have no Zico!

Sara Thompson

As predictable as night following day, laurie carre ranting about a Guernsey FC story in the Press. Does anybody care what you think? GFC's FA Vase run must really hurt.

Ex Northerner

As it happens there are many of us who do care what Laurie thinks, the opinion of a man who was involved in Guernsey football at the highest of levels for many years is worth more than that of a doris who has waved the odd scarf at a GFC game over the last couple.

laurie carre

sara.i really dont care what you think, we ,including you are entitled to our opinions, but i wouldnt call it a rant, and you must really read what i say properly, i wish gfc all the luck in winning this competition, but care more for the all round future of gsy football.

cancel

i know whose opinion I'd trust. As usual GFC fans being so defensive against someone opinion.

Julie

Sara

Rant over?

Shed-Ender

Laurie, IF GFC get to the FA Vase final at Wembley, will you kindly be the caretaker while everyone else is walking up Wembley Way and enjoying a grand day out?

I am sure you will busy putting out bins, watering flower beds and carrying out other jobs Islander's having a grand day out will need doing while supporting GFC at Wembley.

Or if you don't fancy being the Islander's caretaker, it will be an excellent opportunity for you to write another Luddite post telling everyone on their return [having won or lost at the home of World football] how good the GFA and Priaulx League were back in the '60s.

Ex Northerner

Shed-Ender

Fancy having a bet on how many Guernsey fans make the trip to Wembley? Go on, name a figure and I'll go higher or lower, as much as you like

GFCFan

GFC took around 500 to the CCL Premier Cup final last season.

Ex Northerner

Crikey, that's getting on for 1% of the island's population, Guernsey truly will be empty that day (if it arrives).

gafa

Shed-Ender. I don't think Laurie Carre has ever said getting to Wembley wouldn't be a good day out!

Expressing concern is not a reason to crtiticise someone.

If you took out the fact you get a day out at Wembley most people would agree the Vase is low down the order of priorities

Kevin Graham

My views are often at odds with Laurie's when it comes to matters discussed on here, but I don't think people are actually reading some of what he writes on here, and he will be proud of any team that wears green and wins football matches I'm quite certain.

He was the assistant to Alan when I was a football mad kid and will always be someone I look up to as well as enjoy talking with about the game - I think we have some healthy disagreement over the relative strengths of respective eras and that will always be the case regardless of the individuals. Football's generation game always throws this up (and it won't be long before I'm accused of being a dinosaur I'm sure!).

One specific point I would make is that the Island side of the late 80s and early 90s was almost entirely made up of local born players - Dyer, Marley, Hamon, Le Tissier, Chalmers, Coutanche etc - so I think Lawrie is well positioned to talk about local players and their importance.

That said, I think you only have to look at the example Gus Mackay has set to see how local players young and old can benefit from the influence of "adopted" locals.

Johno

Ex N

Told myself I wouldn't waste my time replying to your posts but to good a chance to miss......10

Your turn!

laurie carre

hello kevin, hope your well.you are right, a lot of people either dont read what i say or really dont understand football, of course we cant agree all of the time,and i always want gsy to win.We were lucky to have many talented local players, but would have used non-local if good enough. I dont know Gus as a player or person,but stevie Sharman told me about him a while back, and i have only seen him a few times,and im sure he is good influence for the team,but i was a little disappointed when i have seen him play,with the goals gfc are conceding, i would like to see him a little deeper,but as they say, thats my opinion.Kevin good luck for the big one[muratti]hopefully i will be over.

Johno

Hi Laurie

Should point out that Gus hasn't played the last few matches because of injury, hence I think the goals conceded. I personally think he makes a huge difference to the team as he reads the game so well.

laurie carre

Thanks johno , yes thats what i mean about playing deeper, gfc need a defensive boss, of the fwe times ive seen them, very quiet at the back,we always made sure we had good talkers within the team.

Kevin Graham

Not going to go into my thinking on this too much but all I will say is there are less "talkers" per square metre than there used to be! Cockers is this group's leader and IMO probably the best leader I've ever worked/played with which is saying something given his relatively young age. There's still more to come from him as well but his character, influence and presence are immense.

Not sure of the reasons why but players influence the game in different ways these days with the odd exception and Gus is probably a good example - he speaks more sense than I used to on the pitch but just does it quietly!

Hope to see you in May Mr Carre!

Blue

The way Cockers plays reminds me of Joel Avery in his heyday. Nothing was rushed, read the game superbly and nothing seemed to much of an effort. Always seemed to be in the right place at the right time along with very good decision making.

Johno

Where are the Peter Blondel, Chris Dyers of the world eh!

Probably a problem not just just in football but generally maybe that the younger generation don't communicate as well?

Blimey just realised I'm getting a bit deep boys, sorry.

gfcfan

With today's Laws of the Game, not sure how long Peter would have lasted on the pitch. Class player though.

Toffee fan

Personally he for me he's a John Terry. On the pitch for his commitment rather than ability.

A lesson to young players that whilst you may not be naturally the best working hard can make up for it especially at this level.

Hollis

Thanks for finally talking about > Well done

GFA and Craig

Johno

gfcfan

I doubt that Pete, Richard Harvey, Kevin Le Gallez etc would have seen out the first 10 minutes! The forward line would be a tad twitchy too.

laurie carre

johno. why ?

Johno

Laurie

They would have been red carded after the first crunching tackle!

laurie carre

JOHNO. THE PLAYERS YOU MENTION WERE NOT JUST KICKING MACHJNES,THEY WERE GOOD FOOTBALLERS, AND YOU DONT MENTION THE BEST PLAYER I HAVE SEEN PLAYING IN GSY COLOURS, Colin Renouf. but i do agree in todays game of non contact football they would have had to adapt, but they were good enough to do that

Jimbo

Laurie

You are right. Colin Renouf could have been a huge star in professional football.

You are also right that those other payers would have soon adapted to the modern game. They played the game in the way that the game was able to be payed at that time, but great players will always adapt their game.

Johno

Laurie

I know Laurie, Kevin particularly was an excellent all round player as they all were. I Agree that Colin Remouf was on e of the best if not THE best local player we have produced.

Good to see both the U21's and GFC win yesterday.