Premier League unplugged [18]

It’s the exasperating stage of the season where an unsuspecting cat wants the home team, Cardiff City FC, to win in order to gain points aiming for Premier League survival; while also wanting the away team to win, Liverpool FC, so they gain the points to give them a fighting chance of winning the Premier League! A draw suits neither team.

Confused woman

Until we speak again, the final score was Cardiff 0 Liverpool 2… and football remains a massively frustrating game when a definitive result still doesn’t guarantee any of the permutations you want! Here’s looking over the cliff edge…

As Grand as it gets

Juno was one to take everything pretty much in her stride…

Sending the love

Even when all around her were flirting with the madness of events…

Leprechauns huddle

When history is in the making (one pint at a time it would seem)…

History in the brewing

As the fans make their way to the Millennium Stadium for the Grand Slam decider for Wales with a strong Ireland team standing in their way…

And particularly as the pre-match fireworks light up the scene…

Pre match fireworks

Juno would be totally relaxed while all around are tense with the expectations and trepidations of the occasion…

Pre kick off [2]

But 80 minutes later, Juno would probably adopt a zen-like pose while all around react to the final score…

Yoda eyes down [2]

Final score

And we then wonder what all of the tension was about… wasn’t it a forgone conclusion?

The Grand Slam Champions

Until we speak again, it is also the end of an era, with only one message to be echoed around the streets of Cardiff

Steamroller malfunction

The England steamroller trundled into Cardiff this weekend intent on crushing Welsh ambition. But the Welsh demeanour was a mix of typically nonchalant ‘bring it on’ combined with a generosity towards the profits of Brains beers…

Stadium

City Arms

Meanwhile, others gathered to debate just how much guano would be deposited on the passions of the home nation…

However, in the real world, a tense hard fought match saw the steamroller stuttering in the wake of the sleek limo of the hosts…

Until we speak again, Juno had previously made a far more elegant journey from England to Wales, but always thought of rugby as more of a dogs game, what with all that predilection for hunkering down to sniff each other’s arses!

Scrum      1907_cats

Premier League unplugged [13]

Another classy evening at the Cardiff City Stadium. It’s just a shame that it takes serious adversity to bring out the best in the football family. First it was dealing with the first match following the death of the Leicester City FC Chairman and others in a tragic helicopter crash; now it is even closer to home with the disappearance 12 days previously of the plane carrying the pilot and Cardiff City’s record transfer signing striker, Emiliano Sala.

Welsh men and women came together to show their grief at the loss of a young Argentinian man. The flowers outside the stadium were magnificent, the minutes silence before kick-off was impeccably observed, and it was accompanied by a tremendous visual display across the Canton Stand of blue and white colours of the Argentine flag with Sala in yellow.

Emiliano Sala

Until we speak again, even the team upped their performance to provide the occasion with a well deserved 2-0 home win against a confident AFC Bournemouth team.

Premier League unplugged [9]

The heavens opened, as so often happens in the vicinity of Cardiff City FC. The Saints came marching in, as Southampton FC fans like to claim. But the angels today were in blue!

angel-2548465_1920

Until we speak again, this particular religious experience finished Bluebirds 1 Saints 0.

Premier League unplugged [4]

Getting to the top is a big challenge; but, as they say, staying there is even harder. Take the life-affirming matter of watching your home-based team rising to the exalted heights of the Premier League… it doesn’t take long to realise it can often be a very cruel place…

pexels-photo

Until we speak again, Cardiff City FC managed to be by far the better team, created so many more chances, then showed just a couple of moments of naivety. The result is you end up losing a ‘must-win’ game 1-2 to Burnley FC… cue “sick as a parrot” and all the other inane football cliches!

Slam and Dunk

Deep in the Northern Hemisphere winter is a time when the egg-chasing sports enthusiasts get their moment in the limelight; when the Six Nations Rugby Championship takes centre stage; where some of the people of Wales connect with a strange kind of religious fervour.

This year it all kicked off with the biennial ‘Men in Skirts‘ weekend, as Scotland arrive in Cardiff. A brief moment when men can be true to their inner selves, and at least one shopping-laden woman can turn a blind eye…

1. a) Scary scrum

Scotland were in the rarified position of being tipped by many as favourites to win in Cardiff, only to be blown away 34-7 by the native dragon of Wales

1. b) City Road dragon [2]

Next up, it was the turn for Wales to be on the road, with the fixture that inspires thoughts of a clash with old enemies rather than a celebration amongst rivals. What would the marauders across the Severn Bridge take to the hosts of England, tipped to be champions before the tournament started? Well, with dragon-hearts in mouths for most of the last 60 minutes, it wasn’t to be, as St George stumbles to a 12-6 win, and the guest fire-starters prove at the final whistle to be a little more inert in portraying their true heritage…

2. Inert firestarters

Staying on the road, next up is the always welcome trip to Ireland, where the lotion joyously flows, and the red army have frequently found travelling success. As added-on time arrives Wales are only 3 points behind and in possession with the potential of a match-winning try; and then that wayward pass…… Ireland clinically strike for a 37-27 victory, as Welsh heads are bowed…

3. Fallen head [4]

With two oh-so close matches away, Wales return home determined not to let an unpredictable season slip on the banana skin that Italy may lay down at the Millennium Stadium (no Principality Building Society product placement accepted here!). A frenetic first half is followed by a procession to a 38-14 home win…

Banana skin

Which only leaves the simple matter of a victory in the final home match with France to secure a creditable second place in the Championship. If only… Wales don’t do ‘simple’! After most of the match watched through parted fingers, mouth agape, from behind the sofa, the final whistle brings that rarest of outcomes… Rabbits 14 Headlights 13…

5. Desperately holding on

Until we speak again, you may ask “but what about the other matches?” to which the carefully tutored Juno and Bella would answer “so what!” Another Six Nations comes to an end, with congratulations to Ireland for the Grand Slam of 5 wins in 5 games, and even greater congratulations to England for their Number 5… the Dunk of finishing 5th out of 6!

4. Pride restored