On to the Final!
Saturday night was one of the best games I've been a part of with VPS. We won 4-0, but that only tells part of the story. After a rocky first five minutes which included a missed penalty from Mariehamn, we dominated the game and the score was fair.
Fortunately because of the comfortable scoreline I was able to come on for the last 10 or 15 minutes. It was a good first runout back with the guys, though it was terribly cold and my feet were frozen. I can't wear the same shoes anymore in cold weather. As for my play there wasn't much to say. I didn't touch the ball once until the last play of the game, but my touch did result in a scramble and goal by Nganbe Nganbe.
Speaking of that goal by Frido (Nganbe's given name), it must put fear in the hearts of every coach and defense in the league. In roughly 15 seconds, we took the ball from the goalkeeper's hands to scoring at the other end. At one point in the attack, the IFK Mariehamn defense would have seen Frido, Steven and me all running at them full speed with Sebastian having the ball and his choice of who to play. Even though IFK had four guys back it didn't help and we scored. It definitely won't be the last time we score a lightning fast counterattack goal this year!
The trip home from Mariehamn was typically horrendous. While I like the ferry, I absolute hate the trip itself. We have to leave a day early when we play Mariehamn and spend most of the time between leaving Vaasa and arriving in Mariehamn in transit which is terrible for match preparation. And I don’t want to hear about how Mariehamn has to deal with it every game. They travel overnight so they get a proper night’s rest and then travel in the morning by bus like every other team. It’s not a fair comparison. It sucks that we have to make the trip again in only a month. It takes a lot out of the players.
Since we’ve gotten back to Vaasa I’ve been in full fledged getting situated mode. I’ve been looking at apartments and trying to get my new cell phone to work over here. I’ve also got to get a residence permit again for some reason, which is an expensive and god-awfully slow process.
Tomorrow is a free day so I’m popping down to Helsinki to take care of a few things. Someone needs to run for president (prime minister?) of Finland on the platform of simply lowering train tickets. I’m sure if you promised that and nothing else you’d be a wildly popular candidate. I’ll be in Helsinki for 18 hours, and it’ll cost me more than a typical trip to London! I’ll be sure to take some pictures to remember my short visit.
That’s it. I’ll talk more about SJK going into next weekend’s game. Or maybe not since I don’t know a single thing about SJK except that they’re from Seinajoki, wear black and gold and have a small army of players signed. Maybe I'll look some stuff up on wikipedia.