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Friday 19th February 2016 ko 19.45

Combined Counties League Division One

COBHAM 3 (Webster 15 France 25 West 68)

SOUTH PARK RESERVES 2 (Burgess 9 Campbell 54) Campbell sent off 85 (2nd booking)

Att c30

Entry & Programme £5

What is it about privileged areas and non-league football grounds? Just about every time you visit millionaires’ row almost invariably the local football team struggles for both money and support. You’re only about half a mile from Chelsea’s training ground here, and I did forget to check for stray air gun pellets…

More senior hoppers will know Cobham’s ground as the “Leg O’ Mutton Field,” but these days the name is the  “Reg Madgwick Stadium,” and given that Reg Madgwick served as player, committeeman, fundraiser, and left all his worldly possessions to Cobham FC the honour is richly deserved.

But that goodwill hasn’t attracted folk down Anvil Lane to the cosy ground, and the quite wonderful “Ecological” covered end. The club has never played higher than the Step 5, Combined Counties League, Premier Division and for the last few years have struggled in the lower division. The low attendance for this game seemed symptomatic of the club’s problems, although I’m fairly certain the reserve team opposition put off some of the hopping fraternity.

It was the absentees’ loss though as they missed a fine game. Both sides played good passing football, belying a difficult pitch, and referee Phil Paice had an excellent game too. He had just one major decision to make, dismissing South Park’s Kieran Campbell for two volleys of verbals in 20 seconds.

It made little difference to the result, Cobham were the better side, but after it was all over, and s I picked my way back through roads littered with Audis and Range Rovers towards the M25 it seemed such a shame that so little of that largesse isn’t aimed toward the local football club.