You can imagine content creators (as bloggers are now apparently called) all across the land are going to be scrabbling around for stuff to keep you amused during the virus panic, and we’re no different.
We don’t have viewer numbers to hit or advert revenue to make up, but we do want to keep you occupied when we can. A quiz went up earlier which apparently doesn’t work on Microsoft Edge and occasionally gives you a wrong answer when it’s right, so I thought maybe something a bit different might be in order.
I really liked the idea from Chairboys Central, who suggested that in the event of the season finishing early we should just play a load of five-a-side games. They picked their 5-a-side team and I’ve decided to do the same with our team. Tomorrow, because there’s little else to do, I might pick one from another manager’s era. If the lockdown on football goes on too long, I might end up with one for every manager!
Without further ado, here is our Imps 5-a-side team to play out the final fixtures of the season.
We have two goalkeepers and one is a name I keep getting mixed up with a bloke my Dad knew when I was a teenager, so there’s really no option here. The bonus of 5-a-side is Josh won’t have to come for crosses, so no mad punches to worry about.
If I had to pick a Lincoln City ‘1-a-side’ team, it would be Michael Bostwick. Whether it is 5-a-side, the full 11-a-side or the good ‘ol days of 25 on one team and 24 on the other down the park, Bozzy would be in the team. He’d be my first pick on any draft.
In 5-a-side his qualities would be obvious. Nobody would want to get around him, he would have less space to make up so speedy players wouldn’t be able to try to expose him either. Plus, I normally liked to see a 1-2-1 formation in 5-a-side so he’d definitely be the back ‘1’,
In 5-a-side you always have an engine, a player who seems to make things tick. Back when I played in tournaments for Jackson Building Centres Lincoln, we had a kid called Ben Middleton. Ben was class, great on the ball and direct but he was small. In a full game you might have heard the phrase too small, but in 5-a-side there’s no such thing.
Anyway, I’d pick Joe Morrell I think, because he’s the player who could easily drop further back if needed, but because you don’t have a defence as such, or a forward line as such, he’s the one I think could get all over the pitch nicely.
I think of 5-a-side as a game focused more on skills than anything, without much of the tactical conundrums, presented by a full-sized game. Jorge Grant is a bag of skill with a ropey beard (I know, pot and kettle) and he’s one I’d definitely want in a small-sided game. If we were playing with the wall (which is what I think of as ‘proper’ 5-a-side) then he’d be class, looking for those little flicks off the wall and neats tricks. I Also think without worrying as much about the physical side of the game, heading and the like, he’d be able to chip in with plenty of goals.
I’m convinced that my 5-a-side team would be fine playing Scully upfront. I firmly believe he’ll be a big player for us and, if he stays injury-free, I’ll talk about him with the same fondness that I talk of Peter Gain, David Puttnam and Gordon Hobson. He’s a footballer, a proper player who wants the ball and likes to frighten the opposition with a range of unpredictable skills.
I can see him thriving in a small-sided game, against Burton he looked to glide past defenders and was a constant threat pushing forward. As the attacker won’t need to be winning lots of balls in the air, he gets the nod over Tom Hopper to win us the points we need in our fictional 5-a-side finish to an utterly bizarre season.
On The Bench
Maybe a bit of a surprise here, but if I had to go for two subs I’d plump for Bridcutt and Jack Payne. Bridcutt is perhaps obvious, not needing the traditional centre back as much would make Bridcutt the obvious choice; he’s strong in the tackle, can move up and down the field and would be good as the last man back or joining any attack.
As for Jack Payne, I still feel he’s a cracking little player and any lack of size wouldn’t be such an issue in a 5-a-side. I think his skill set is suited to the smaller sided games, where possession is quick, instinctive and natural. He wouldn’t be as reliant on the centre forwards, plus without the aerial aspect to the game he wouldn’t be challenged quite as much as he is in League One action.
That’s my 5-a-side team, who would you pick and why? Add them to the comments below or, if you’re feeling brave, send me them to firstname.lastname@example.org, with why you’ve picked the players, and I’ll do an article of the best choices later in the week.
We’re all bored, aren’t we?