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ROAD TO RIO 2014 AGENCY-STYLE

At 9am on Thursday morning, things were looking pretty dire. Registration for BBC’s World Cup 5-a-side Agency competition was at 12.45pm and already 4 players had pulled out of the team due to workloads, handovers and hamstrings. After re-reading the rules we found out that studs were not allowed and now we had people with incorrect footwear.

At the 11th hour, things started to look better when Jamie T put his handover and career on the line and decided to rejoin the squad. We now had a full team consisting of Garth, Echo, JT, Kouminho, Burzin, Jess and yours truly.

Immediate controversy hit the team when we arrived to discover we had been moved to a different group. 16 teams were competing in 4 groups and ours now consisted of Mediacom, MEC and BBC All Stars. The games were 5 minute halves, so action was fast as you needed to score quickly to win.

GAME 1: Match 0 v MEC 0 (Draw)

A slow start to proceedings, with the other team producing a female goalkeeper, and in proving chivalry was not dead, none of the Match boys were game enough to take a shot at her. Unfortunately the only person who did shoot (Burzin) had his banana boots on and hooked the ball to the left from right in front.

GAME 2: Match 5 v BBC All stars 0 (WIN)

After some stern words/threats from the captain, the next game proved a lot more successful. Not only another clean sheet but this time everyone scored except Kouminho (yeah that’s right Jess scored, Koumo didn’t). The account was open and the day was looking brighter.

Goals: Garth, Burzin, Echo, Jess, JT

GAME 3: Match 0 v Mediacom 0 (Draw)

You could see the fire in Garth’s eyes as we walked on the pitch for this one! Mediacom had to recruit a talented goalkeeper from another team, because a company with over 200 people found it hard to produce 5 players. They also found it hard to find a way passed Echo’s defence and a nil-all draw meant it would come down to goal difference.

MATCH topped the group and were off to the Semi’s.

SEMI-FINAL: Match 3 v Zentih Optimedia 0

Once into the Finals, there was no stopping Real Match FC. 2 quick goals in the first half and the domination began. Kouminho, Garth and JT all finding the back of the net. Project Peter Nicompoop was put into effect to ensure a victory and we were now going to the final without having conceded 1 goal.

Goals: Kouminho, Garth, JT

FINAL: Match 5 v Reprise 0

After dominating their group and semi matches, Reprise were looking very confident as the thousands in attendance asked (who the hell is Reprise?). Their star striker played with his Ray Bans on, but was soon looking for them when Garth bedazzled him and they flew off in the process. After this, we saw what may go down in agency history as the greatest goal ever scored – a rebound of one of JT’s shots bounced towards Jess and she proceeded to volley blast the ball into the back of the net (Van Basten-style). 3 more goals and the rest was history.

Goals: Burzin, Garth, JT, Echo, Jess

MATCH became the 2014 (inaugural) Champions of the BBC 5-Aside World Cup Competition!!

To pick an MVP is almost impossible as everyone contributed in their own way, but here are some key highlights:

  • Jess played every minute of every game in the 30 degree heat (and that volley!)
  • JT and Garth got top goalscorers with 3 a piece
  • Echo and Theo kept a clean sheet for the whole competition
  • Burzin did his best Carlos Tevez impersonation in the final and bulldogged the team into submission
  • Kouminho definitely had best nickname
  • Peter Nicompoop (that’s a secret we can’t divulge)

So there you have it, Match’s first trophy of the season…………..CAMPIONES!!!! CAMPIONES!!!! OLE OLE OLE!!!!