• Ben Westwood

Poem - Leatheton United


Back in 2019 I wrote a fictional poetry book called 'Welcome To Leatheton', the first of what will be a series.


Here's a poem from the book, just a small snapshot of this fictional town. Can Leatheton make it to the first round of the FA cup? Or even further? Read more to find out.



Leatheton United


One Tuesday in early September,

Half a mile from the Birchtree Estate,

a group of men were doing their football training,

after work and it was now getting late.


We’ve got Don Rae the scruffy painter, whom doesn’t do

too bad in goal.

Although he often saves the ball, we’ve been on a bad roll.


We’ve got Jim Barr the electrician, right-centre mid, can

strike a ball.

Francis Robinson in left-central defence, at six-foot-six-

inches tall.


We’ve got Clive Clarke in left midfield,

whom in a moment creates play -

If he’s wearing his hair-tie that day, and dreads ain’t in the

way.


Martin Spencer’s one of two strikers, he plays the right-

hand side.

But every time he gets a shot, the ball will end up wide.


Abid Ali plays in left-back, he runs the phone shop up the

road.

He’ll sprint for around three seconds, before Abid has soon

slowed.


Simon Newman is our right back, he’s not too bad but

often misses training.

But his general stamina is withering, and the manager is

complaining.


Janaka singh he plays left-centre mid, the hardest worker

of the team.

He’s the one that often gets the ball, but don’t always

tackle clean.


Jack Murphy plays right-centre back, it’s true folk would be

lying,

If they said he didn’t scare a bit, he’d send everyone flying. We’v got Daniel Ștefănescu, whom plays on the right wing.

The fastest player on the team, but barely does a thing.


Michael Watson plays left-centre forward, but don’t score

much at all.

Because he thinks that he’s Ronaldo, and rarely once

passes the ball.


Nathan Gouth is our sub keeper,

he’s only now just turned eighteen.

They reckon by next season,

he’ll be the main one on our team.


Gavin Stuart, Tony Day, and Leroy Jackson-Jones,

Can often be seen on the bench, checking Facebook on

their phones.


Mickey Parker is the manager,

And he sometimes turns up pissed.

He’s even turned up to some games to find that they’ve

been missed.



The next week we have the FA cup, at Thonnington

Athletic.

Mickey said if they don’t take this chance, then they’ll

surely regret it.


Come on lads! Let’s do this thing!” Mickey to them said.

Join me in staying sober all week, and swapping to brown

bread.”


Saturday came, they won the game,

one-nil the final score.

They anticipated whilst they waited, for the FA cup draw.


The next match that they were to play, away at Hillston

United,

was one that they were to surely not win.

Until Francis Robinson ran, onto Clarke’s curling corner,

for a last-minute diving header that went in!


The lads did celebrate on that Saturday night, and again

waited for the next draw.

They’ve only just gone and beat the Metropolitan Police!

And then just done a right number on York!



Leatheton’s just made history, for this unknown little club.

The furthest that we’ve ever been, in the FA cup.

If we can somehow win the next game, we’ll make it to the

first main round.

And who knows then what from there, we could do this

town proud.


Don’t give us Barnet or Southport, and please not Torquay

United.

With a home draw against Hornchurch, the Leatheton Lads

had got excited.


They knew they still had to play well, and it wouldn’t be

easy.

Michael Watson’s only scored a hat-trick!

And we’ve won the game four-three!



It’s the first time in our history, that we’ve got to the main

first round.

But surely this trip is over, when we go to Yeovil Town.

We held them to a nil-nil draw, and played quite well that

day.

And only gone and won one-nil, when we played the

replay!


They’ve all now cut down on their drinking, except for

those that do not drink.

But the dream is almost over now, everybody thinks.

We’ve done so well to get this far, you all should be

proud and smile.

Don’t feel bad if we get thrashed, by Plymouth Argyle.”


We’re losing by the second half, the score is now one-nil.

We’re sixty-seven minutes in, only two shots we’ve had

still.

Then Clarke steps up for a free kick, looks like he’s hoofed

it far.

But what a lob! In off the keeper, a rebound off the bar!


And on the eighty-second minute, Janaka Singh had then

ran through,

with one mighty dribble, and passed it to Ștefănescu.

He’s right on the edge of the box, and Martin Spencer’s

free.

But their defender pushes him.

It’s a penalty!



Michael Watson steps to take it,

and you can see it means a lot.

He then kisses his closed fist,

and kicks the ball from the spot.

The keeper’s chosen to go right,

slow-motion - eyes lock on.

Right down the centre, in the net,

the score is now two-one!


Plymouth go all-out-attack,

but Leatheton hold the ball.

We are the Leatheton United,

And we’ll take on you all!



The third round of the FA cup, the whole town watches

the draw.

It will be the biggest ever sports event, that Leatheton’s

seen before.


It’s a home draw, and so we wait, for the next ball to be

drawn and there’s nerves.

And then comes our fate, as they draw out an eight, which

means that we’re going to play Spurs.


Just as expected, Leatheton were hammered,

but everyone in town had a great day.

The score seven-nil, but all of the town still,

will remember when Spurs came to play.


© Ben Westwood 2019



Welcome to Leatheton is available in paperback and as an eBook at https://www.amazon.co.uk/Welcome-Leatheton-This-Ben-Westwood/dp/1098989929


You can also read the poem 'The children's home' (also from this book) by clicking here





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