The North of Ireland man makes the difference, on the second attempt


FC Británico2Win
CDE Venezuala1Loss

An interesting aspect of this league, and a great testament to the many different communities that have found a home in Madrid, is that it is not completely unusual to have a game in which the two sides represent not their barrio, an old school or a local bar, but in fact an actual whole entire nation state. This was the case last Sunday, when FC Britanico faced C.D.E. Venezuela at La Elipa.

The tension was palpable in the build-up. Questions swirled.

What would be the diplomatic repercussions of this game? Had London been on the phone to Caracas to discuss peace talks? Would Paco ‘the cat’ Garcia be able to continue his fine form in goal? Could FCB win the game and climb to the top of the table at the end of the day?

The answer to those questions: Don’t know – it was a joke, Obviously not (joke!), Yes!, and YESSSS!

That’s right, after a seemingly season-ending end to 2023, the FCB boys’ fine form in the new year has seen them reach the top of the league following a 2-1 win over C.D.E Venezuela.

This game was as clear a demonstration as any of the increased maturity and confidence in the face of adversity that this team has shown in recent weeks.

The game started as well as could have been hoped for by the boys in black. In-form striker Padraig found the back of the net in the first five minutes with a shot from the edge of the box following some good build up play by someone (maybe Ish), somewhere (down the right??).

FCB had a spring in their step but Venezuela were no mugs, keeping the ball nicely and developing some good passing patterns. Also, an early injury to Harry meant a key attacking threat was left nursing a pulled groin on the bench.

Ed came on, joining Will, Arren, Omar and Gonza in a back five, while Ish pushed up alongside Padraig up front.

FCB stayed resolute and disciplined as Venezuela grew into the game, and had chances to extend their lead after some fluid attacking moves down either flank.

EQ, Calum and Yarron stolidly blocked any Venezuela offensive play, and did well to find the time and space to link up despite the opposition’s high-press.

FCB were set to go into the interval one up before a mazey run from their midfielder left a couple of our defenders on their arses and a deflected shot fell to the Venezuela striker to was composed to slip the ball past Paco who had been faultless in goal.

Despite this FCB still had confidence, and this showed in the second half where they had much more of the ball and almost all the chances.

The pressure built and paid off as FCB won a penalty after a cross came in from the left hand side. Scoring a penalty is much harder than people make it out to be, and Paddy proved that theory when he saw his attempt saved low down to the keeper’s left.

Previous iterations of this team would have panicked, but FCB stayed resolute. This belief was emboldened by the headloss shown from the opposition, who had multiple players booked and one man sent off for dissent.

Rafa came on for EQ, and Will moved into the middle and still FCB were unable to break the deadlock. That was until another penalty was awarded and this time Padge was able (just!) to slip it past the keeper into the bottom corner. The North of Ireland man has now moved to 25 goals for the season.

The final whistle came and FCB were ecstatic with the bravery and perseverance they had shown.

They trooped to Argayo for beers in the sun where Paco was deservedly awarded man of the match and in one of the great injustices of our time Will was given dick of the day for the second week running.

Venezuela, you may have Angel Falls, Los Roques, the gorgeous city of Barquisimeto and arepas. But WE (by that I mean FCB not Britain) ARE TOP OF THE LEAGUE!

Man of the Match: Paco Garcia
Goal of the Match: Padraig Slane
Dick of the Day: Will Sewell

FC Británico

31Paco Garcia Midfielder
4Arren Sutfcliffe Defender
6Omar Majid Rodriguez Defender
8Calum Cant Midfielder
9Harry ‘Jax’ Newman 3 Forward
10Erik ‘EQ’ Quevedo 19 Midfielder 37'
11Padraig Slane Midfielder 5', 83'
15Gonzalo Yaya Defender
20Ismael Majid Midfielder 88'
24Yaron Bacher Defender
32Will Sewell Midfielder 80'
3Edmund Keith 9 Defender
12Joe Simmons Defender
17Dorus Leenaarts Defender
19Rafael Perez 10 Defender
21Karlos Wysom Defender
16Luigi Bosetti Midfielder
  2 4

CDE Venezuala

6 2