Hastings United 3 – 2 Albion

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It won’t be much of a match report this post, as I only watched 30 odd minutes of it. That was due to it being a lovely day and wanting to have a good drink. I never even saw a goal go in. To be fair a lot of the reason for this total lack of commitment to football spectating was down to the daft interpretation of Football League Rule “Thou shalt not be able to see a football being kicked whilst thou hast a pint of ale in one’s mitt”. I don’t know whether Hastings themselves or some shady representative from the professional game decided to enforce this rule – but the whole point of non-league football is that you get treated like an adult and can have a beer while watching the game, without hi-vis bellends and the Polis breathing down your neck.

The bar at The Pilot Field looks out over the pitch, it has three windows, but only two roller blinds. I decided to roll up the two as the teams came out and the hapless stewards were on me in a flash. A small mob of similarly thirsty fans gathered around the one remaining outlook only to have the biggest steward literally stand in front of it and extend his arms in case the sight of a footballer doing his job might send us all into a drunken, rampaging mob.  So you had the spectacle of beer-drinking fans, young and old, trying to peer over a big bloke in hi-vis to see glimpses of the game outside, while he ducked about like Bruce Grobbelaar in a penalty shootout trying to block their view. A farce. So, after downing my lager I went outside to watch the remaining first half in the sunshine.

At half-time the bar filled again, and the three of us made the decision to bin the football, Vicente and all, and head down to the Old Town and “get on it properly”. And that’s how my first match of the 2012-13 season ended – in a haze of quaint old pubs and, after a train journey back to Brighton, another flurry of ale. Game over. I’m still suffering this morning.

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