Jeff’s Chippy 6-1 Shepherd’s Tuesday Clapham Common
29th September 2019
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth...On the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work.”
Those words are from Genesis - the first book of The Holy Bible, not the 1970’s pop group with Peter Gabriel on vocals and Phil Collins on drums. The book is believed to have been written around 1400BC, over 3000 years ago. It is the story of creation and the origin of all life.
Arguments have raged for centuries about the validity of the Bible’s creation theory. The most popular and convincing theory against The Bible’s version of events was developed by Charles Darwin when he claimed that there was evidence suggesting that humans had in-fact evolved from apes through a process of natural selection, adaptation and survival. His book “On the Origin of Species” created shockwaves across the world when it was published in 1859, Darwin was almost single-handedly destroying the teachings and key foundations of the church – understandably there was uproar. He faced criticism and derision from the church and even fellow scientists alike, his life was completely changed upon publication of his work until he died of heart failure 23 years later.
Up until his death Darwin conceded that there was one paragraph from Genesis that all experiments and studies couldn’t disprove: “On the eighth day God created Charlie Mitchell for Jeff’s Chippy and God saw he was good!”
To those who believe, God is regarded as a shepherd watching over his flock but even he would’ve been forced to look away on Sunday afternoon as Shepherd’s Tuesday were ravaged by one of his own. Chippy got off to a Biblical start when Lewis Crossland gave the Clapham side an early lead in the first-half. The winger took a touch to compose himself six-yards out before slotting in to an unguarded net after the Shepherd’s allowed Mitchell free reign of the penalty area.
In ancient Jerusalam those who had been sentenced to death were nailed to a cross to serve as a warning to anyone wishing to commit a similar crime. The preferred spot for these public executions was a hill called Golgotha which overlooked the city, it translates as “place of the skull” and that’s exactly where Crossland placed his cross midway through the first-half. Despite missing several good chances earlier in the game Mitchell, Chippy’s top scorer from last season, made no mistake in heading home the accurate corner from two yards out to double Chippy’s lead.
In Christianity the death and resurrection of Jesus are the two most important events in The Bible and are a key foundation of the Christian faith, celebrated today by Easter. The two most important events in recent Chippy history are the retirement and immediate return of former manager and club legend Harry Ingham. If his form continues then his resurrection could well be celebrated by lifting a second successive league title. For the majority of the Jeff’s Chippy squad - with the notable exception of “Buffet” Stu Barraclough – another trophy is far more rewarding than Easter’s offering of chocolate.
It’s said that one of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, denied knowing Christ on three occasions – many Christians claim that cowardly act is on par with Judas later selling out his leader to the authorities. New Chippy recruit George Robinson recently claimed that Ingham didn’t possess a left-foot, an act of denial seen as blasphemy on Clapham Common. Early in the second-half Ingham brought down a long Phil Gray punt on his chest before turning, driving towards goal in his own inimitable fashion and firing past the Tuesday goalkeeper with a left footed strike. It’s said that Peter “cried bitterly” after he realised the mistake he had made, tissues are on hand for George if he chooses to regret anything he’s said recently.
Chippy were in their stride and made it four very soon after with Ingham and Mitchell linking up well. A long, accurate ball from the back once again found Ingham’s chest before Mitchell picked up the ball and after some quick feet fired a powerful shot past the sheepish looking Shepherd’s goalkeeper.
David and Goliath is a story from the biblical book of Samuel and describes how a Philistine giant was defeated by a young boy with nothing more than a slingshot and a stone. Neither a young boy nor a stone were required for Chippy to beat Shepherd’s Tuesday, it took Barnsley born Crossland breaking down the right before launching a low, stinging cross across the six-yard box. With Chippy captain Jon Walton waiting to tap-in a Shepherd’s centre midfielder herded the ball in to his own net to make it 5-0.
When the Israelites were forced in to slavery by the Egyptians in 1250BC God chose Moses to lead the exodus. When the escaping Israelites reached the Red Sea they realised it was impassable, with the Egyptian army advancing on them they were trapped. According to legend, Moses held out his staff and God parted the sea so they could safely pass through. Taking inspiration from the Israeli prophet Mitchell once again drove at the Shepherd’s Tuesday defence and they duly parted before bringing him down inside the box.
Despite Gray never missing a spot kick and being the designated penalty taker for the Chippy, Mitchell grabbed the ball and demanded to take it. Despite being one of the most dangerous strikers in the Central London Super Sunday League the future does not look bright for Mitchell, if you reference The Bible it claims: “Thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers will inherit the kingdom of God!” Regardless, the Chippy striker made no mistake in slotting home the spot kick to claim the match ball and a sixth for Ant Stonehewer’s side.
When Diego Maradona cheated England out of a World Cup quarter-final in Mexico 1986 he claimed the goal he scored was: “a little by the hand of God and a little by the head of Maradona”. Up until Sunday that decision was the biggest travesty in English footballing history. But God bettered himself 33 years later as he was on hand to help Shepherd’s Tuesday to a penalty in the final few minutes of the game. Despite the arm of Walton clearly being by his side and despite no movement of the arm towards the ball and despite the arm being in a completely natural position, the referee somehow pointed to the spot for the second time, truly a gift from God for the Shepherd’s.
Very much like the gold, frankincense and myrrh Mary and Joseph were given after the birth of Jesus Christ, the penalty was a gift too good to pass up for Shepherd’s Tuesday. They made no mistake in dispatching the ball past the outstretched Chippy ‘keeper Chris May.
Chippy are back on Clapham Common on Sunday to face Clapham Southgate. The last time these two sides met, Southgate knocked Chippy out of the cup. The Bible preaches about forgiveness and to “turn the other cheek” but forgiveness is not a word in Chippy’s dictionary, they’ll be out for revenge.