For all the terrible reasons you already know about, 2015 is a year many will be happy to see the back of.
If it wasn’t the indiscriminate slaughter of innocent civilians, it was floods. And if it wasn’t floods, it was dead children on beaches. And if it wasn’t dead children on beaches, it was bombs on planes. And more massacres. And then more floods.
Fuck off, 2015. Just fuck off.
Still, at least football provided a respite from the horrors of the real-world – what with its unending procession of cartoonish villains, human rights scandals, and rampant corruption alleged at the very core of the world’s governing body.
The best we can say about the last twelve months is that they occurred and won’t occur again, and look forward to happier times ahead… once we’ve got through the sales. And I don’t know about you, but nothing screams ‘new year cheer’ than an unruly mob fighting each other to the death for the last remaining discounted wok set at Boots.
Boston United’s 2015 was certainly an interesting one, with the current team playing some of the best football down at York Street for years. In true Boston style, of course, things didn’t quite end up going to plan…
Is there a better place to be on the planet than York Street under floodlights on a crisp wintery night when Boston play as brilliantly as this?
Well, yeah. The Maldives, obviously. Or Cordes sur Ciel (voted France’s most picturesque village in 2014).
But you get the point – this was a scintillating performance against a team no-one round here particularly likes, on the kind of night that reminded everyone why York Street will be sorely missed when the old place is finally razed to the ground.
Perhaps the highlight of the evening was the straight-from-the-training-ground free-kick routine that afforded Nicky Walker the time and space to sing ‘Auld Lang Syne’ before plonking the ball into the net.
Take that Colwyn, you unspeakable bastards.
Player of the Year: Carl Piergianni
“I love him,” said the Forest fan.
“I wish I could be his friend,” said the Liverpool fan.
“Who IS that?” the Villa fan asked.
“It’s Carl Piergianni,” I replied. “Isn’t he a dreamboat?”
Okay, I may just be paraphrasing Marty’s mum in Back To The Future in that last bit, but the eye-catching, swoon-inducing performances of Piergianni really did have fans of rubbish higher-tier teams yapping about how they’d love to sign him on the train back to Nottingham on more than one occasion.
And no wonder – Dayle Southwell may have the goals, but he doesn’t have Piergianni’s hair. What a player. What a man.
God, I haven’t felt this tingly about a Pilgrim since Tony Crane went topless at Kettering.
Lowlight of the Year: Adam Roscoe’s overhead kick
Not since Damon Hill’s Arrows fall apart like the Bluesmobile on the last lap of the 1997 Hungarian Grand Prix has any sporting disaster stung quite as much as Roscoe’s ridiculous last minute equaliser.
Let’s move on before I start crying.
Worst Away Trip Of The Year: Harrogate Town
The away trip to Chorley doesn’t count, since I didn’t get within 50 miles of Chorley, so my pick for the most pointless waste of time belongs to the snowy tundras of Harrogate and Boston’s feeble 2-1 defeat on a pitch that looked a bit like a slightly more unplayable version of Everest’s Khumbu Icefall.
From Boston’s awful defending, to the strange man at the bar nailing double measures of whiskey, to the bafflingly hostile steward who spends his spare time picking fights with kittens, it was one of those Saturdays you wished you’d stayed at home.
Yawn of the Year: televised FA Cup games
I’m not sure what annoys me more: the unswerving commitment from the FA Cup broadcasters to pick the most obvious games for television involving all the obvious teams while hypocritically harping on about the diversity of the competition, or the fact that we always get knocked out by a factory team in the extra-extra-super-preliminary round, and thus aren’t available for selection for television anyway.
The FA Cup is fucking shit.
Award For Undying Commitment To The Cause: Nick Upton and Josh Butler
Lastly, a special mention to Nick Upton and Josh Butler for their impressive/baffling (delete as you see fit) decision to attend Boston United’s play-off game at Chorley in the knowledge they couldn’t actually get home afterwards. Instead, the two men opted for a sleepover in a waiting room at Crewe station to await a 4.59am train that may or may not arrive, with a carrier bag for company.
Photos published after the event showed one of the exhausted fans sprawled in the kind of unedifying heap normally only witnessed when someone has jumped off a tall building.
Now, I am such a terrible Boston United fan that there are times when Boston United could be playing in my back garden and I wouldn’t even open the curtains, so the dedication of these two men to take on that trip leaves me completely and utterly in awe of their…. er, honestly, I’m not entirely sure what you call it.
ToD salutes you, boys.
Shithouse Club of the Year: Leeds United
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