April 2nd 2022. No, do not adjust your sets, that really was the score line in a match that can only be explained by some kind of collective
meltdown in SW20.
RPV have played some sublime football this season and have had some remarkable results and have played with a gusto and style that few would recognize from a few seasons ago.
However, this was a game devoid of flair, of ambition, of imagination. One can only wonder at what was going through the minds of the Balham players and bench when, having capably snuffed out Vale’s Plan A as if it were a candle on a 6 year-old’s birthday cake Raynes Park responded with an uncharacteristic lack of spirit. If there was a Plan B then clearly someone had forgotten to pass on the news to the team, because as Balham feasted, wide-eyed, like kids in an unattended sweet-shop at the goodies just waiting to be pinched from the Vale Pick ‘n’ Mix the home team looked lost and bewildered by the sudden requirement to play football. For a match like this the blow-by-blow account is almost irrelevant when it can be summed up as: Balham came, they saw, they damn well conquered and they are probably still grinning at just how easy this win was for them.
Let’s be honest Vales romp up the table has been wonderful and we all knew that dreams of promotion were wishful thinking so early in the development of this new, exciting squad but, as the season rolled on it started to look like it could be done and we know that in 22/23 we won’t be just dreaming of promotion we will be fighting for it with every game but, when we look back at this season, this match against Balham will stand out as a stark reminder of why we will be enjoying another season in the CCL RPV didn’t play badly exactly but were definitely found wanting by a Balham side who, with
due respect, should have been there for the taking.
Raynes Park Vale 0