Weekly football conversation since 2009, with Graham Sibley, Jan Bilton and Terry Duffelen. Listen on Apple, Google, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn or your podcatcher of choice.

Stop The Clocks

Johnny remembers a fortunate victory

Pundit: Timing everything
Pundit: Timing everything
Binkum: Solely Responsible
Binkum: Solely Responsible
Brooking: Also solely responsible
Brooking: Also solely responsible
Funny old thing, Football. For instance, clocks. Often helpful, sometimes disastrous. For who can forget England's lucky 1971 victory, and the part played by the clock at Leicester City...
In many ways it was all Bob Binkum's fault. If the legendary Filbert Street clock-winder hadn't popped his clogs two weeks before, at a time when his clogs were desperately required to stay exactly where they were, none of the resulting trouble would have happened.
For some reason England were playing obscure Eastern European country Vorania at Filbert Street. Both sides had to win to progress to the European Championships. Sadly, Vorania's genocidal maniac dictator Marshal Flem had died two weeks before the game, and the country was plunged into six months of official mourning. Every day, at sixteen minutes to five in the afternoon - the time of the Marshal's demise - the entire country would stand to attention, salute and sing the Voranian national anthem, which roughly translates as "Where would we be without Flem?"
Trevor's Floater
Mindful of this position, the FA moved kick-off back an hour. A dull predictable 0-0 draw ensued, with England bafflingly unable to break down a Voranian team composed of two postmen, an apricot picker, seven peasants and a rent boy named Alan. However, at 17.44 precisely, as Trevor Brooking floated over a corner, the entire Voranian team, no doubt mindful of their families back home, stood to attention, saluted and broke into "Where would be without Flem?" Mick Channon stooped to conquer, England won and all hell broke loose.

Selfishly dying
It was a few weeks after British Summertime had kicked in, y'see, and the Voranians - swept from B+B to team bus to pitch - hadn't bothered to put their watches forward an hour. They assumed our fair isle was still on the same time as the continent; and with thoughtless old Bob Binkum having upped and died, the Filbert Street clock was unwound, stock still and unable to help. I understand in Vorania there still exists the phrase, "You're as selfish as Bob Binkum."

Yours aye,
Johnny Pundit

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