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Footieless Saturday still conjures emotions

04 September 2010

Empty grounds do not make for a riveting Saturday.

Just three matches into the league season and, on this Labor Day weekend in America, I’m laboring to get through a Saturday without (much) soccer. It just doesn’t feel right.

Most international breaks at least feature qualifying action on the weekend as a placebo, but all of the Euro 2012 contests came yesterday (or Thursday, if you’re Israel and avoiding a match on the Sabbath). That leaves us staring at a plate of MLS, English League One and below (hey, did you see Bury’s 9-goal thriller with Gillingham??) and the mighty Northern Ireland Premier League. I don’t even get to spend one weekend focusing more on Cardiff City, as “my” Bluebirds gun for an auto-promotion to the Prem. Sigh.

For footie fans who also follow the American version of football, this feels like those days when an NFL team could have its bye week in Week 2. You play about seven percent of your schedule, and just when you settle into a rhythm as a team and as a fan base, there’s an unnatural interruption.

Maybe I’m spoiled by Fulham’s 2009-10 campaign, where deep FA Cup and Europa League runs made it feel like the Cottagers played every three or four days for the second half of the season. Or maybe I’m just a fan who wants his fix.

That said, there’s always *something* soccer-related that can make you smile. Yesterday, it was Hamit Altintop’s beyond-world-class volley for Turkey in a 3-0 win at Kazahkstan. Today, I noticed that Carlisle United and Swindon Town drew 0-0 in League One.

Why is that game relevant? Well, it provides an excuse to link to this retrospective on Jimmy Glass, a goalkeeper who scored one of the most famous lower-division goals in English football history.

Glass, who was on loan from Swindon Town, scored for Carlisle in the final seconds of the last game of the season in the old Division Three (now League Two) to keep them from being relegated out of the football league. The sheer unbridled joy of the pitch-storming Carlisle supporters reminds us why we care about this game.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. 04 September 2010 2.24pm

    Awesome video. Thanks for sharing.

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