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The Half-Time Team Talk

1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 The Half-Time team talk that had to be good

2 Leave a comment on verse 2 0 to turn what looked like certain defeat around.

3 Leave a comment on verse 3 0 I was once a youth team manager of Tring Tornadoes U/16s

4 Leave a comment on verse 4 0 we had led the league the whole season undefeated

5 Leave a comment on verse 5 0 but we had another local side hot on our heels.

6 Leave a comment on verse 6 0 They had lost one match at our ground earlier in the season

7 Leave a comment on verse 7 0 and were just 2 points behind us going into the last match,

8 Leave a comment on verse 8 0 with the final game at their ground .

9 Leave a comment on verse 9 0  

10 Leave a comment on verse 10 0 They went for a 9.30 am kick off on a Sunday morning,

11 Leave a comment on verse 11 0 with a 40 minute journey and to be ready for kick off

12 Leave a comment on verse 12 0 I had to get fifteen 16 year olds up at 7 am

13 Leave a comment on verse 13 0 to be ready to go at 7.45 am, not an easy task!

14 Leave a comment on verse 14 0 But to a young man they were all ready to go.

15 Leave a comment on verse 15 0  

16 Leave a comment on verse 16 0 At half time we were 2-0 down!

17 Leave a comment on verse 17 0 So my half time talk would have to be good.

18 Leave a comment on verse 18 0 It would have to be different, exceptional and memorable!

19 Leave a comment on verse 19 0 So what do you think I said? I said:

20 Leave a comment on verse 20 0 “Lads we have had a great season,

21 Leave a comment on verse 21 0 undefeated before this match and we have been top all season.

22 Leave a comment on verse 22 0 But with Stokenchurch’s’ gamesmanship

23 Leave a comment on verse 23 0 going for an early morning kick off on a Sunday morning,

24 Leave a comment on verse 24 0 it has caught us half asleep in the first half.

25 Leave a comment on verse 25 0 We know we can play much better than this

26 Leave a comment on verse 26 0 so we have to play our hearts out

27 Leave a comment on verse 27 0 if we are going to turn this game around.

28 Leave a comment on verse 28 0 We have to wake up and start the second half running

29 Leave a comment on verse 29 0 and keep it going until the final whistle.

30 Leave a comment on verse 30 0 I believe if we play like we can we can do it.

31 Leave a comment on verse 31 0  

32 Leave a comment on verse 32 0 Put it this way, it’s like we have been to a very posh restaurant

33 Leave a comment on verse 33 0 and had a fantastic main course, but the restaurant manager

34 Leave a comment on verse 34 0 has just told there are only enough desserts/ puddings for one team

35 Leave a comment on verse 35 0 and they were going to serve them to you, as you were top of the league.

36 Leave a comment on verse 36 0 But now Stokenchurch are top of the league,

37 Leave a comment on verse 37 0 they have nicked our puddings and there are non for you, as it stands.

38 Leave a comment on verse 38 0 So are you going to let them nick your puddings

39 Leave a comment on verse 39 0 or are you going to go out there and nick them back and say

40 Leave a comment on verse 40 0 get off those puddings they are ours? “

41 Leave a comment on verse 41 0  

42 Leave a comment on verse 42 0 The team laughed as did the assistant manager and parents

43 Leave a comment on verse 43 0 listening in to my half time team talk

44 Leave a comment on verse 44 0 “So come on lads get out there and get those puddings back,

45 Leave a comment on verse 45 0 they belong to you , not our arch rivals Stokenchurch.”

46 Leave a comment on verse 46 0  

47 Leave a comment on verse 47 0 Within ten minutes of the second half we scored !

48 Leave a comment on verse 48 0 Game on!

49 Leave a comment on verse 49 0 “Come on lads I shouted,  think about the puddings”

50 Leave a comment on verse 50 0 Their team hadn’t a clue what I was talking about.

51 Leave a comment on verse 51 0 Some of our lads were smiling.

52 Leave a comment on verse 52 0 Thirty minutes in we equalise 2-2 , the comeback was on.

53 Leave a comment on verse 53 0 “Come on lads we can get those puddings they belong to us!

54 Leave a comment on verse 54 0 We are top of the league not them”

55 Leave a comment on verse 55 0  

56 Leave a comment on verse 56 0 Fifteen minutes to go, end to end stuff, a draw would be enough,

57 Leave a comment on verse 57 0 but a defeat wouldn’t.

58 Leave a comment on verse 58 0 We would end runners up after leading all season.

59 Leave a comment on verse 59 0 One last big shout from me:

60 Leave a comment on verse 60 0 “Come on Tring Tornadoes you can do it!

61 Leave a comment on verse 61 0 Let’s take this game, we have got them!

62 Leave a comment on verse 62 0 Take the puddings off them! “

63 Leave a comment on verse 63 0 And we do just that within minutes of the final whistle, we score again.

64 Leave a comment on verse 64 0 3-2 to us ! We hold on for what looked like an impossible come back.

65 Leave a comment on verse 65 0 We won the league at Stokenchurch!

66 Leave a comment on verse 66 0  

67 Leave a comment on verse 67 0 You should have seen their manager’s face and their team and parents.

68 Leave a comment on verse 68 0 They thought it was in the bag.

69 Leave a comment on verse 69 0 but they didn’t know I had one special half time team talk up my sleeve:

70 Leave a comment on verse 70 0 ‘the pudding talk’…and it worked!

71 Leave a comment on verse 71 0 That was 21 years ago now,

72 Leave a comment on verse 72 0 but I expect not one of those lads

73 Leave a comment on verse 73 0 have ever forgotten Mr Icke’s pudding talk.

74 Leave a comment on verse 74 0  

75 Leave a comment on verse 75 0 On the way home with the League Cup Winners Cup on the table,

76 Leave a comment on verse 76 0 I treated all the boys to a big ‘fry up breakfast’ at Tesco

77 Leave a comment on verse 77 0 I’m not sure how many went for the black pudding option but it didn’t matter now,

78 Leave a comment on verse 78 0 that the Half Time team talk had made such a difference

79 Leave a comment on verse 79 0 and we won the league at Stokenchurch!”

80 Leave a comment on verse 80 0 ————————————————-

81 Leave a comment on verse 81 0 © Simon Icke

82 Leave a comment on verse 82 0  

7

Notes

The most extra-ordinary half time team talk that helped turn what looked like certain defeat in the last match of a league season 2020/21. The result of this match would decide who would finish champions of the league and who would finish runners up…
But how did puddings become so important to winning a football match? This special Half-Time team talk will be remembered by the Tring Tornadoes players for the rest of their lives. Enjoy the story of this very unusual Half-Time puddings talk by the team manager Simon Icke. ( Simon was awarded manager of the year 2000/21 Season by Tring Tornadoes JFC and the boys all received their league winners medals at the annual club awards evening.

ootball Poet and author of Touchline Shouting. Bolton Wanderers Fan.

Source: https://footballpoets.org/poems/the-half-time-team-talk-2/