Isle of Sodor Premier League – matchday 31 (4/6-7) – Sun., #1 Dryaw hosts the Bad Boys of East Coast Diesel

Matchday 31 (Sun., 4/7) preview      (Sat.’s match previews precede this post)

#9   Glennock            vs.     #16  Ulfstead
#4   Crovan’s Gate   vs.    #10   Suddery
#5   Kirk Ronan         vs.    #20  Arlesburgh Utd. (5-0 AU)
#13  Marron                vs.     T14  Vicarstown (8-6 M)

plus the Sunday feature match        #1  Dryaw   vs.   T7  East Coast Diesel

Season-long followers of IoS PL coverage might assume Noob simply camped out in Dryaw for yet another week.   It was tempting, this being a little Paris of sorts, an idyllic haven for writers and intellectuals and all sorts of unscrupulous rabble. Image result for Doug Barr me  But my best friends American author Daniel J. Heck and Doug Barr (1980’s TV “The Fall Guy”, screenwriter and vintner) both hopped back across the pond.   Saturday’s feature match was in Brendam, and so there I b&b’ed for the week.

But now Noob’s back, baybeeeeeee.     And the mood in town Noob sensed Saturday night was surely odd.  Naturally, everyone’s riding a wave of elation that Dryaw’s been leading the league for weeks upon weeks.  And they now lead by four – not a huge cushion, but a little margin for error’s been managed.

Yet there’s no mistaking an air of worry here.   Two matchdays weekends ago, E.C.D.  Image result for east coast diesel creststormed back from a 2-6 deficit to earn a draw in the Walney Channel Derby.   This team that had muddled through just an ok season went back to their pre-Premier League identity, as one that plays seriously rough defense.   Remember:  even moderately hard defense has always been considered uncouth historically.

Yes, Dryaw supporters are scared.  Worried about the result, sure.   But terrified of their players getting mauled.  In the second half of that derby two weeks ago, Diesels earned 10 yellow cards in as many minutes.  They then cruised the following matchday to a 4-2 road win over Marron that was not as close as the score indicates.   They even retook their official 2018-19 team photo.   They look haunted and angry.

Image result for mean amateur soccer team photo

So since reclaiming their identity, they’re 1-1-0 and have outscored opponents 8-2 over the last three halves.  Related image   Dryaw, meanwhile, are 2-2 in their last four.   They’ve been more offensively-minded over this stretch, but who knows how many easy chances they’ll be able to muster today now that the Bad Boys are back.

Noob calls it:    I think E.C.D. are going to control the pace.   That said, the FA folks seem none too pleased with Diesels’ re-finding of their brutally physical style.

Noob’s not suggesting they’ve given explicit marching orders to the refs to keep the game Sudric-clean, but some sort of message has gone out.  They’d like to see their unique brand of football take hold and get a little international attention as time goes on.      The call:    2-2

The title race stays scalding hot.

Isle of Sodor Premier League – matchday 30 (3/23-24) – Sun. #1 take on the FA Cup winners

Matchday 30 (Sun., 3/24) Preview 

#2   Knapford Town   vs.    #15  Vicarstown
#4   Crovan’s Gate      vs.    #11   Castle Rolf
#13  Marron                   vs.     T7    E.C.D.
#6   Wellsworth           vs.     #18  Ulfstead

Plus the Sunday Feature Match:    #1 Dryaw hosts #14 Brendam Harbor

Hello from village Dryaw!   Noob usually attends both the weekend’s Feature Matches.   But no way I was going to interrupt my stay in Dryaw this week.   The preview’s a’comin’, but first, indulge Noob’s small peek into my long-term, part-time life here.

For those newer to all things Sodor, Dryaw’s a sizable village in the west central part of the Isle.  West and south along the coast are three of the large towns, all easy gets for finer dining.  Just east – estates, B&B’s, wine country.  And so, it’s become a haven for writers, whether for short vacation, extended stays, or even permanent residence.

me Noob’s been hanging and imbibing with his usual pair o’ pals.   American novelist Dan Heck (Google up his books, or even his new blog-archive of all things championships of all kinds) came for the week.  Image result for Doug Barr So did Douglas Barr, costar of 1980’s TV’s “The Fall Guy”.  Actor, writer, director, vintner – we’re all becoming best friends, it’s true.  He brought some of his newly available 2002 “2480 ” cab sav from his Hollywood and Vine Cellars.  Behhhst frehhhhnds.  So, Noob’s got more than a bit of a katzenjammer working as he writes tomorrow’s preview.

Related image Sportsball!   Ok.  Dryaw still lead Knapford by two in the table and Peel Godred by four (Peel’s Sat. result pending).  This, despite being just 1-1-2 their last month.  The road loss last week in the capital against midtable Suddery was a surprise.  Will they re-find their offense again today?  They’ve proven they can win high-and low-scoring affairs alike, but one goal is rarely going to get you any points on the Isle.

Image result for BHFC crest Brendam Harbor won the inaugural FA Cup this past summer, but surprisingly have not followed that up with a strong first PL season.   They’re just 14th in the table.  Being from one of the “main towns” on the Isle, they were certainly considered a league fave even before winning the Cup.

They’re one of the few teams on Sodor that play a reasonable semblance of defense.  They’ve certainly had their share of strong games on that regard, but when teams score much at all against them, the Harbormen have rarely shown they can compete in a shootout.  Motivation may start to become a question.   They’re safe from Relegation, yet have little hope of competing for a top-half table finish.

Noob calls it:      Dryaw  5-1        Dryaw’s been excellent at home, for the most part.   And they’ll be plenty motivated.  They know Knapford and Peel Godred also have home dates this weekend, matches against bottom half teams.