Tag: Bromley

Review – “The Bromley Boys”, by Dave Roberts

When one indulges themselves with such a singular adolescent pastime as watching your local non-league team home and away, it’s easy to start believing that you’re the only person in the whole world that does this. Non-league crowds are, by and large, old. The average teenage boy turning up at a grubby semi-professional football ground will be disappointed by the number of people of his own age there (and in particular, considering that the optimism of the average teenage boy is surprisingly limitless, that there will be none there of the opposite sex), but this won’t prevent them from going back, all the while wondering whether everyone else in their school class is doing something sexier, more exotic and more debonair. They’re not, on the whole, but there’s not much in it. So, then, to “Bromley Boys”, Dave Roberts’ story of supporting Bromley FC throughout the 1969/70 season – a season which turns out to the the worst in their entire history. This is the story of Anywheresville, Home Counties, and Roberts has brilliantly captured the torpor and hopelessness of bad non-league football as seen through the mask of a fourteen year old boy. What is noticeable to me, as someone that was doing this in the mid to late 1980s, is how familiar it all feels. Non-league football had, in many of its defining characteristics, much more in...

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Match Of The (Mid) Week – AFC Wimbledon 3-1 Bromley

One of the more cunning ideas to have come about in recent years within non-league football has been the introduction of matches on the August Bank Holiday Monday. With the Premier League and Football Leagues not playing, it’s a day for bumper crowds right at the start of the season, although the effect of going to a non-league match when there is no other football on can be a little unsettling. Upon arrival at Kingsmeadow tis afternoon, we are treated to twenty minutes of Rugby League, with Bradford Bulls playing against Hull Kingston Rovers. It’s a strange fifteen minutes, sipping on a pint whilst trying to make sense of a game that I just don’t understand. “Fifth tackle? What does that mean? Why don’t they tackle, like normal rugbists do?”. In some respects, Rugby League, with its shoulder pads, summer season and teams with daft, marketing-fed nicknames, is like a warning for us. This is what our game could become if we’re not very, very careful. If I’d grown up in Yorkshire watching it, I don’t know what I’d have done. AFC Wimbledon’s start to life in the Blue Square south has been charmed, to say the least. They completely over-ran Newport County on the opening day of the season, but have ridden their luck somewhat since then. Against Thurrock, they needed two goals in the last five minutes...

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