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Saturday 30th June 2012 ko 2.00pm

Pre-season Friendly

LONDON LIONS 1 (Keterman 48)

FISHER FC 2 (Oyettunji 11 Wadmore 43)

Att 42 (h/c)

Entry & Programme £5

Played at Rowley Lane Sports Ground, Arkley, near Barnet.

I don’t remember pre-season friendlies ever starting up this early, well not for clubs not involved in European qualifying. It gave me a small dilemna, as I normally use the FIFA rule that places June in last season. However the match-day programme has got 2012/3 so I’ve reset the counter!

The appeal of this one was the ground, London Lions normally play their home games at Broxbourne as there’s no lights at Rowley Lane. That may well change with the new floodlit 3G pitch adjacent to the main pitch. Our game was another step down the hill, on the training pitch. One of two hoppers ummed and ahh’ed but then realised they could come back again for the main pitch! Incidentally, the main pitch is used on a Sunday by Arsenal Ladies reserves, affording the hopper to break every purist rule in the book, all at once!

I do have a slight connection with Arkley, as my grandfather was born there, and was brought up in adjacent Barnet. The sports ground these days is very much a base for the London Maccabi association. It’s a trust aimed at promoting sport for London’s Jewish community, and its principal football team the London Lions, play in the second tier of the Spartan South Midlands League.

I would question the fiver to get in, but the 8 page programme was welcome, and an hour of the game was hugely enjoyable, until two tiring sides felt the need to make vast numbers of subsitutions, destoying the rhythm of the game. With Fisher having no players under contract, this was a game for the multitude of triallists to impress, and its didn’t take long for one, Olye Oyettunji to impress, cutting inside the left back and placing a shot in the bottom left corner.

The visitors were clearly the stronger outfit, and got their second from the penalty spot, Adam Wadmore converting after Aron Barnes brought down Ope Aromona. The second half saw the Lions come into the game a little more and made the game interesting on 48 minutes, Tony Junior Keterman converting Sam Sloma’s left wing cross. Sloma played last season for London’s other Jewish club, Wingate and Finchley, so perhaps there’s communication between the two clubs!