Cheryl spelt trouble.

As the much-adored niece of pub landlord Gerry Ford, she held a lot of sway. If Gerry felt that Cheryl was not being treated with respect by the committee members of Pooltown FC, well, as far as he was concerned, they could go bog off and find another pub.

From the football club’s point of view, The Golden Bell was their Coliseum, where many a battle had been fought over the dart board, card table and draughts board for over 50 years.

It was also a place of sanctuary. To the committee members of the club it was an escape from nagging wives and noisy kids.

So they had to tread very carefully with Cheryl and Uncle Gerry. Very carefully.

And they were facing a massive problem on that score. Cheryl’s heart-throb, striker Jake Riley wanted out.

He had designs on a bigger and better club and there was nothing to stop him.

In fact he had already held preliminary talks about a transfer. There was no big money involved but free petrol for the season, ten bottles of Brut plus new suits at 75% discount would prove attractive to any young man and Jake was no exception.

Chairman Smokin Joe Sweeney was on his ninth pint of dark mild. His eyes were glazed and his flat cap was on the wrong way round which may look cool now but not so in 1971.

The club had to survive. Cheryl had to be kept sweet. Jake must stay.

Joe raised his eyes to the Capstan-stained ceiling looking for inspiration.

Oh, Stanley, Stanley what would you do if you were me?

He awaited an answer from the Wizard of the Wing.

None came.

Only fate could step in and come to the rescue.

Find out what happens in the final episode tomorrow.







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