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WINTERS WORLD FEATURING BACK ON THE ROAD TO WATCH MIDDLESBROUGH AND RANGERS
17th September 2014

Since my last column to coincide with the international break I cleared off to Madeira for a week in the sun. I travelled on the day of the transfer window closing and both Boro and Rangers were seen to be moving out youngsters to "gain experience". Whatever happened to giving youth a chance?

As someone once famously said, "You win nothing with kids"!!! At least at the Riverside there were more high profile signings made. It really is shit or bust for Boro this season.

Steve Gibson has once again to be applauded for his continued financial backing of Boro; let's hope his judgement in the latest manager isn't misplaced. We now have three forwards so let's hope he dispenses with his one up front policy. I couldn't second guess his team selection. Can't wait for Saturday to see his starting line up.

Article continues below...



The build up to the referendum in Scotland gathers pace; cant help thinking that English politicians landing en masse in Scotland didn't exactly help the "No". Hopefully the majority will see through Salmond and keep our Kingdom United.

On Wednesday my weekly article appeared in my local newspaper (read it here) and it provoked quite a response on the @GazetteBoro chatroom. It seems that everyone agrees that the atmosphere at the Riverside could be improved. I will be continuing that aim in my next article for them.

Wednesday and Thursday and doing what I love best - two days of early starts to pick up my Grandson; decent weather so plenty of exercise and fresh air.

jeff winter
Tuesday night and the sight of the red, white and blue Union flags welcome Rangers onto the Ibrox turf. No matter what happens on Thursday that surely will never change. But then again some would try to outlay the flag of our country.

Friday and unfortunately due to work commitments, namely a speaking event in Cumbria, I had to miss Rangers game against Raith Rovers in Fife. I wish football and racing fixtures could be planned around my availability!

Acca tracker on the phone so I can get goal updates from Starks Park as Rangers ease to a comfortable three points. Not exactly revenge for that terrible day at Easter Road but perhaps an indication of the progress being made. Off the pitch good news as a little more financial stability is announced for the short term.

Arrived in Cumbria for the evening's speaking engagement with my mate and top draw comedian Gary Marshall. Small audience for Rafe Askam United FC Junior Section Sportsman's Dinner. Small audience but generous with it and a profit was made on the night.

As usual at these events an absence of parents, all around the country people use clubs as cheap child minding facilities. Thank God for the hardworking volunteers. Lovely people and an honour to help them.

jeff winter
Young Winter on the bottle, a great Thursday evening spent with Oliver and my Grand-daughter Heidi.

Saturday and homeward bound via a detour to Huddersfield to join over 3,500 Boro fans at the John Smith's Stadium; hopefully the season for Boro starts here!

My first experience at Huddersfield was with a local steward. Having been given clearance to enter the club car park because they found my name on the list I drove on into the parking area right behind the away entrance. I was stopped by another steward who enquired: "Are you here for the match?" My normal quick wit would have and should have given him a suitable answer. I was though for once gobsmacked and speechless as to why the stupid jobsworth twat would imagine that entering a football club car park on a match day would mean I was going anywhere else.

jeff winter
The balls in the back of the net the Boro fans go wild and Boro have deservedly won at Huddersfield.

Three hours till kick off but the time passed quickly as anticipation grew and the away end filled quickly with over 3,500 Boro fans in very good voice. I enjoy a very good relationship with the home club and the chairman informed me that he felt they had got the best of the Clayton/Butterfield transfer dealings. Well he would, wouldn't he? Let's hope he wouldn't be so upbeat post match.

With a new manager to impress the Terriers were in our faces from the off. This would test our foreigners aptitude for a fight.

We couldn't get the ball down as they were in our faces and things really kicked off when after a very poor first touch James Vaughan made a late challenge of the Boro keeper. Tension was high and it was clear that Lee Peltier and Grant Leadbitter started a long running feud that might allegedly have carried on in the tunnel post match.

jeff winter
Saturday afternoon, all new signings in and hopefully the season starts here for Boro against Huddersfield Town.

The home side looked the more likely until the game changed on a free kick. Grant Leadbitter fired a home 30 yard screamer and that was it, Boro completely took over and looked even more comfortable when the smooth silky Vossen and mobile Patrick Bamford replaced Tomlin and Kike. The only thing they didn't do was score a second goal.

Cue another Boro nemesis, Jonathon Stead, who scored with Town's only shot of the second half. The late goal looked to have condemned Boro to a loss of two points, then bizarrely in added time Tommy Smith inexcusably tugged on Adam Reach's shirt as he chased the ball that was going nowhere - dangerous.

Step up Grant - 2-1, three points and my three bets up, Get in there!!! Let's not get carried away, but there were definite signs that the team is coming together.

jeff winter
3,500 plus Boro fans are up for at it the John Smiths Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

I was introduced to Colson Smith, the actor that plays young Craig in Coronation Street. Fortunately he didn't have his pet rat with him!! Nice lad despite being an avid Leeds fan! Also at the game was Huddersfield fan and Yorkshire County Cricket captain who had the trophy that the county had won on Friday.

Monday and an Oliver day followed by an evening at the Darlington Civic to watch Dreamboats and Miniskirts, decent, but a bit of a con!! Not a miniskirt in sight, minidresses though so not too bad.

jeff winter
Boro players applaud their magnificent travelling fans after securing all three points against Huddersfield Town on Saturday afternoon.

Tuesday and missing my first Boro game of the season at Cardiff and also Sedgefield Races but still a sporting fix as Sarah and I met up with the Scarborough car. Thought we were dedicated but Andy and Andy senior are different class. Hardly ever miss home or away that's a minimum 10 hours return journey. Hats off to them, quality support.

Couldn't believe that ICT are over 2/1 to win, very good value but you can't bet against your own side. But the bookies rarely get it wrong and that was to be the case.

What a difference a year makes and after being outclassed by Butchers Cally in the cup last season, Rangers were the better side throughout. Black had one of his best games for the club, Moshni got away with one of his typical lapses of concentration.

The only disappointment was that it was only 1-0; we were lacking upfront. That is the key area for strengthening for next season. Thouroughly satisfying performance and result though. A great night all round as Boro win at Cardiff. Rangers play next Tuesday at Falkirk now the same night as Boro are at Liverpool. More choices to be made!!

jeff winter
Saturday post match and after I've done my stint on the stage its the turn of the Yorkshire Cricket captain along with the County Championship Trophy to try and uplift the home fans.

THE WEEK AHEAD

Thursday and a really important day for the future of the United Kingdom, the bookies make "No" a very firm favourite. As previously suggested they rarely get things wrong. Let's hope that's the case!!

Thursday night Sunderland Empire to see the Lion King. Friday night speaking in Glossop then Saturday ticket permitting up to Alloa, next Tuesday it's probably going to be Anfield.

jeff winter
Action from Ibrox and Boydy is still stood but soon to replaced by Daly to add pace up front!

Are you planning a Speakers Evening or fundraiser? You can be assured that as well as speaking I will give maximum help to fundraising on the evening with my auctioneering skills, contact me regarding availability on jeffwinter@jeffwinterentertainmentandmedia.co.uk.

Just a thought, nowadays many smaller organisations have stopped doing Sportman's evenings mainly due to the economic recession and the increasing costs. If your club doesn't have the numbers to support the traditional speakers evening then why not book me for a one man show, I regularly do these, my normal After Dinner slot followed by a Q & A session and fundraising activities. I can assure you there is more than enough content to fill the night.

jeff winter
Tuesday night and ICT prepare for the restart after Rangers have taken the lead at Ibrox.

My charity account for MND is still open and taking donations to try and raise funds for the society that works so hard to help people suffering from the disease and I am still hoping people will contribute. Please help me help them.

http://www.justgiving.com/Jeff-Winter

Have a good week.

jeff winter
Tuesday night and its all over at Ibrox, Rangers have swept aside SPL opposition and march on towards the potential of meeting them for the first time in three seasons!

jeff winter
The message is loud and clear - let's hope that the good people of Scotland vote wisely on Thursday.

jeff winter
Why, why, why, in England they reduce ticket prices for Cup ties like these? A tenner and a fiver would surely have made sense!!







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