Flat champers at Tenerife farewell

We knew we were in trouble when The General started selling T shirts proclaiming CD Tenerife as champions. The other results had gone for us and a home draw was all that was required but Castellon hadn’t read the script and sneaked a 2-1 victory. The day was about so much more than just the game, and coach Oltra’s strange starting line up owed more to sentiment than logic. Club legend Cristo got a rare start for his final game and there was no place for Alfaro or Kome.

The biggest pre match cheers were for Cristo, hanging up his first team boots after 6 glorious seasons of pouring his heart and soul into everything he does for the club. Tenerife dominated the first half and should have been a couple of goals up within 10 minutes, Nino, Ayoze and Richi all spurned good chances. Cristo had the ball in the net after 19 minutes, and the stadium was ready to erupt but it was ruled out as the ball had already gone out of play.

Castellon had few chances and it seemed a matter of time until a home goal arrived, Cristo played a part when it did, setting up Nino to nip in and score after 41 minutes. This confirmed Nino as “pichichi” the divisions top scorer with 29 goals, a great achievement. Seven minutes into the second half Cristo was taken off for Alfaro, a chance to milk the richly deserved applause for a true local hero.

That was most of the boxes ticked for the night, time to put their feet up and relax, Tenerife didn’t just take their foot off the pedal, they got out of the car and went for a snooze in a layby. It all got a bit sloppy and casual, Castellon took advantage of the half awake defence to level via Arana after 55 minutes. That should have been a wake up slap for Tenerife but this was a deep sleep, the errors kept coming and even the introduction of Kome, the Whip of the Atlantic (see banner) couldn’t lash them into action. Alfaro and Iriome both missed late chances before the unthinkable happened on 90 minutes, Sampedro hit the winning goal and the championship was gone.

A bit of a let down, but after such a superb season, we can take this one on the chin. The crowd swelled onto the pitch at the final whistle and the slightly subdued celebrations began.  Cristo was carried round the touchline shoulder high and fans danced among the sprinklers that had sprung into life. There was some serious scavenging for souvenirs going on, chunks of turf were dug up, someone got the penalty spot, and a few people used lighters to burn off bits of goal netting, I tried to tuck the blonde security guard under my arm but she wasn’t having it.

Personally, I am so in awe of what the club has achieved this season, all on a small budget, everyone from the President down to Gladys the tea lady, should be bursting with pride. Next Sunday, the B team have the big final of their season at home to Sporting Mahones from Menorca, and a chance for promotion to Segenda B. The Armada Sur will run a coach is their are enough numbers, The General awaits your call. If anyone is after some natty t shirts, The General says he has a few of the “promotion” ones left, in fact he has a wharehouse full in Las Chafiras.