Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Crystal Palace Hero

I've never liked football as much as rugby union. That said, as a youngster sometimes my Uncle Tom would take me to Selhurst Park, home of Crystal Palace Football Club - 'The Eagles'. Win or lose we always had a great time, Uncle's enthusiasm fuelled by pre-match refreshments at the nearby Robin Hood public house, while I was given coke. In those days, just the drink.

Over the years I've kept an eye on Palace. Buy the ticket, take the ride. Promotion, relegation, changes of ownership, bankruptcy, they've had it all in London SE25.

But last night, as I watched on telly, a new hero emerged. Danny Butterfield scored three times in six minutes against Wolverhampton Wanderers, and Palace made the final sixteen of the FA Cup. Butterfield's not a striker, he's a defender 'who likes to get forward'. Evidently. That said,
in his previous six seasons he's scored one goal.

He looked as if he could hardly believe what had happened. The result cheered me, but even more his banana grin, the almost nonplussed shake of the head after his third goal went skating in. Understandably, when he was rested a few minutes from time Butterfield received a huge send-off from the crowd.

Three more on Saturday then?

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