The Owls. I (along with many other Brits) always find it quite amusing/ridiculous that our friends from across the Atlantic like to give teams ridiculous monikers often based on animals. The Miami Dolphins. The Chicago Bears. The Japanese do it as well, but at least they manage to achieve a subconscious tongue in cheek. The Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters and The Hiroshima Carp are my two baseball teams. (Yes, I can have two Japanese baseball teams that I support).
The recent Hull City Tigers debacle shows how little appreciation there is for animal tags in the UK. However, I have found a reason for them. It turns out Gy has the ability to remember football teams by their mascot/animal. So the conversation goes something like this:
“Who are Frem playing this weekend?”
“C? What are you talking about?”
“Ah. The Owls. Why didn’t you say?”
Other teams include The Bumblebees – Bronshoj, The Goats – FC Koln, The Nazi Eagle – Ferencvaros, The Elephant that Loves to be Touched – B93 and so on and so forth.
Martin and Colin fascinated by paper. Colourful paper.
So this week, Frem play the Owls. It turns out that I have seen them before (this is not a huge surprise to be honest). Now they are coming across town, in a first plays second Match of the Millenium (SkySports, you have my number. Actually I don’t think you have) which may go a long way to deciding which of these teams will be playing second tier football next season.
Frem messed up what looked like a very winnable game against Middelfart to mean that they have been pulled back towards the promotion chasing pack somewhat. I blame myself. I have not seen Frem lose. Or at the very least, I do not remember seeing Frem lose. This means that if I attend every game that Frem play for the next four seasons, Frem could be the smallest club ever to win the Champions’ League (the proper one). Unless, they go on an improbably long sequence of draws that sees them stagnate in whatever division they are in.
As alluded to in the previous post, we had visitors for the weekend whose excitement soon evaporated as they experienced the full force of a spring day in Copenhagen, but returned once we sat down for our first beer at Frem HQ. Given the weather, we had actually arrived some 150 minutes before kick-off, leading to several rounds of beer and a game of Kaste Gris (my only Danish – Pass the Pigs). Kaste Gris is a game of skill and destiny that is actually an ancestor of an early agricultural sport that involved the tossing of piglets which is believed to have originated in the small Buckinghamshire town of Cheddington. I won.
Martin and Colin then went merch crazy before chastising the size of the shop versus the number of staff in said shop in a dialogue that could have sounded like a McKinsey report executive summary. Still scarves around necks, beers both from bar and bag drunk, we stumbled into the arena.
Still not entirely sure how selfies work. They scare me.
To be honest, this was the first time that I had a) felt nervous pre-Frem game and b) I had felt the nervousness of other people pre-Frem game. There was a genuine tension in the air. This was very much a game that would probably allow the victor to put a toe or two across the line to Division 1 and send the defeated team into the arms of what was beginning to look like a very crowded chasing pack. We also edged ourselves closer to the edge of the crowded home support (that sounds clumsy rather than poetic as I intended, but hey ho, go with the flow).
The importance of the game seemed to rub off on to the players somewhat with neither side creating any clear cut chances and Frem being restricted to shots from distance that forced the keeper into making saves that he would have been expected to make. AB seemed to be going to ground fairly softly, but the opposite conclusion that Frem were holding nothing back in the tackle could also have been reached.
Something exciting was happening.
Then AB scored. And despite being only the end of the first half that seemed to kill the game. Frem seemed to lose all momentum. AB started to knock the ball around with fair ease and were pretty happy to let Frem try and break them down. They couldn’t.
A day that had started with the hope that this would be the start of a procession towards inevitable promotion ended with increasingly cautious glance over shoulders and confusion as to where the early post winter break form had gone too.*
Dance little man.
Anyway, best not to let football get in the way of a good party. Once again, we had a party in the stands and a party afterwards. It is great starting to recognise some friendly faces and I am even remembering some names. Roll on the next home game because in the terrible, yet immortal (in the loosest sense of the word), we go again.
No owls were knowingly hurt in the drafting of this post. I like owls. (Weird word to say though).
* Because I have been so slow in putting together this match report (hence the scarcity of any real analysis of the game and a focus on Kaste Gris), Frem have played another game away in Thisted (halfway to the Faroes) and lost 3-1 dropping out of the top 3 in the process. Games against HIK and Bronshøj (bumble bees) are looking increasingly winnable if not for the points then for the sake of some momentum. AB are winning this league.
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