Alonso Fan Club At The Sportsman

“Alonso, I don’t like him  – He’s a mardy t**t”

Rather than talk about Lukas Jutkiewicz’s injury time equaliser to earn Birmingham a point against big spending Charlton, I thought I’d kick off with the minority sport of F1.

Actually, I probably should just mention Blues’ point, as it will probably leave them safe for another year in the Championship.

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Watching it on Sky Soccer Special last night was absolute purgatory.  I don’t mean the actual game itself (although that probably was) but the absolute helplessness of being a football fan was on show here.

A missed penalty, the despair of falling behind and into almost certain relegation, then the absolute gut wrenching tension of Jeff Stelling saying an goal in injury time at St. Andrew’s…and the knowledge that a point inches your team to another season of toil in Division 2 awaits.

(celebratory pint – especially for Garden Hermit)

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I’m supposed to be on holiday but there was nothing relaxing about 90 minutes of ‘following’ Blues so I’m looking forward to this protracted campaign finally finishing next week.

Luckily, it hasn’t been stressful all day, as I paid a visit to what you would call a ‘no-nonsense boozer’ in Long Eaton.

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This is one of Derbyshire’s biggest suburbs and, as such has an abundance of pubs although is probably regarded as less cask connoisseur than its near neighbours such as Sawley and Breaston.

562 – The Sportsman NG10 4HA is on the edge of the town centre and was further proof that normality is returning.

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Once I’d done the obligatory book sign, hand sanitise and worked out the one way system, it was as relaxed as I’ve seen a pub.

Not that anyone was being anything other than sensible but it looks to me that if you let people show common sense they might actually use it.

(inaugural meeting of the Fernando Alonso Fan Club)

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Four sports screens with Sky sports on three and sky racing channel on the other, to is always a good barometer of your market audience.

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High stool and bench seating in equal measures showed signs of a smart refurb along with a random Lionel Messi shirt on the wall.

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Dark Fruits, Coors, and Guinness were order of the day for everyone else in the boozer but, with the cask renaissance in full swing, I thought I’d go for the Doom Bar (Sharp’s) option.

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Whilst it didn’t reach the giddy heights of The Milking Parlour or Hardinge Arms it was more than decent and I would have had another.

Seven other punters in at 3.15 on a Tuesday afternoon isn’t bad and the four opposite me were in full flow and enjoying pub life.

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As they popped out for a fag break they were tearing into Fernando Alonso – F1 had just been on Sky Sports News – and whilst this isn’t in my top 100 ten favourite sports, they were giving him plenty.

“Alonso, I don’t like him  – He’s a mardy t**t and always has been” said the bloke on the Guinness and this was met with general approval and much laughter.

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I even managed to take a couple of decent pictures without Garden Hermit’s suggested selfie stick and a bloke outside having a fag even moved so I could take another snap.

A friendly boozer with friendly punters not giving two hoots about cask but having a pint, enjoying life and putting the world to rights – all at a sensible distance.


8 thoughts on “Alonso Fan Club At The Sportsman

  1. “(celebratory pint – especially for Garden Hermit)”

    Before I even attempt to return to Hampshire dining pub land it would seem I’m doomed…..

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah yes – very high proportion of pubs named The Sportsman in Yorkshire. Was one just along the road from my parents home near Scholes

        #Take me there…. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

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