Wednesday, 20 January 2016

The Vault of Evil website reviews England 'B': Ninety Minutes of Hell by Richard Staines

Demonik on the Vault of Evil website has started an ongoing review of England 'B': Ninety Minutes of Hell by Richard Staines.

"Stainsy's 'Football is Horror!' masterpiece centres on the exploits of Vince Grinstead, the near-legendary Crystal Palace clogger, survivor of the Goboya horror of summer '70 and interim manager of the England 'B' squad from 1974-6.

No Such Thing As A Friendly: 14 June 1970: As Sir Alf Ramsey's England are busy blowing a 2-0 lead over West Germany in Mexico, the 'B' team are shunted off to play a meaningless friendly versus Goboya, a small island off the coast of South America. The England side, coached by glass-eyed xenophobe 'Mad' Mickey Clinch, are captained by Crystal Palace's Vince Grinstead, 34, who gives us a first hand account of the ensuing bloodbath.

Goboya are a disorganised rabble of a team who'd probably be no match for England schoolgirls, but they've a secret weapon in their swift and outrageously skilful number 10, Genio, a budding Pele who is soon tying Grinstead's blood in knots. Vince grudgingly concedes that the youngster has far more talent than anyone on the pitch and can't bring himself to follow Mad Cinch's orders to "break his f**k**g legs". So, with England 2-0 down at the break and staring humiliation in the face, psycho-coach takes matters into his own fists .....

N. B. This version of No Such Thing ... is essentially the same as that which appeared in The Fifth Black Book Of Horror save that Vince has now dropped his pseudonym.

A Game Of Two Halves: The horrific events in Goboya proved too traumatic for Grinstead, who swiftly hung up his boots to concentrate on assisting Big Mal in getting Palace relegated and running up an astronomical slate at his local, The Smuggler's Arms. Come April 1974, with the FA having agreed to play a goodwill fixture versus the Soviets on enemy soil, the search was on for a new patsy to succeed the late unlamented 'Mad' Mickey Clinch. Luckily for our National pride, chief Blazer, Sir James Bassingdon-Smythe, knew just the mug for the job. Which is how Vince came to assemble a squad of chain-smoking, skirt-chasing alcoholics to take on the might of Professor Ivan Hairnitz USSR Representative XI in the Molotov Stadium, Murmansk ....

To be continued ...

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