Season Annual excerpt: Barca Jim on West 3 – 3 Barnoldswick Town

This is an excerpt from the 2016/17 Season Annual, designed and produced by Lew Currie. While physical copies are sold out, digital copies are available now from the West fan club website for £1 – click here to buy. This piece was written by Jim Burke – better known as Barca Jim – about last season’s 3-3 home draw with tonight’s opponents Barnoldswick Town.

As the original Chuck D, Charles Dickens memorably wrote..

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” Arguably a decent shout as a club motto for West.

It has never been as appropriate as it was on a Saturday in late March when Barnoldswick Town arrived at Brockburn Road. West had a few players missing but the ever humble Matty Kay was back and the visitors received a welcome pre match boost with news that Saul “Beef” Henderson started for West.

What followed in the next 45 minutes was genuinely some of the best football I have seen at this level. Crisp,accurate passing, aggressive pressing and 6ft 5 “Beef” unexpectedly winning his aerial battles against the visitor’s 5ft 6 centre half.

The B’wick keeper who had a great first half had to pick the ball out the net three times. The first a beautiful finish after an intricate passing move, the second from a great set piece and the third a lovely bit of footwork from West’s centre half to make space for himself to finish with aplomb.

I even found time to congratulate Setts on the performance as I wandered round for a pint mentioning that he better hope the drug test lads don’t show up as the performance was so good that it was a “class A” first half.

As the teams came out for the second half Brock shouted over that my comments had found their way into Setts’ half time team talk so I was naturally buzzing..

What could POSSIBLY go wrong?

Well, every bloody thing possible as it goes. Passing got sloppy, pressing that would shame West’s Under 9s and Beef gave the appearance of a man jumping to his full height of 5ft 3”

We stood behind the goal that West were attacking and it became clear we were unlikely to see much action at that end. B’wick scored from a pen 3 minutes in and that familiar feeling of “here we bloody well go again” settled over us. In truth the only surprise came at the final whistle and we had only shipped another two goals to snatch a draw.

For all the disappointment it was still one of the most “West” performances of the season, one half of sublime football and a half where you’d have fancied Stephen Hawking with a flat battery to bag a hat-trick against them

And that, right there, is why we love them

West play Barnoldsiwck Town tonight in the NWCFL at Brookburn Road, M21 8FE. Read our match preview here.

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