One-sided thumpings are part and parcel of grassroots football, but spare a thought for Nova 2010 FC who lost 58-0 recently.
The Torbay Sunday League side were hammered by local rivals Wheel Power FC – a record defeat for any side in British football history.
Brothers Robbie and Stuart Bowker scored 28 times between them – elder brother Robbie netting 18 – while eight players bagged a hat-trick or more.
The omens were bad for Nova from the start. Having lost 11-3 at home to Wheel Power earlier in the season, they could only pull together nine players – a man down to their opponents’ 10 men for a game that was living up to Sunday league stereotypes.
Nova trailled 5-0 after five minutes and 20-0 at half time. When they had finally had enough after conceding 50 goals – and one wonders how it took that long – they weren’t shown any mercy by either their opponents or the referee.
10-goal Stuart Bowker said: “At 50-0 they’d had enough but the referee told them they must carry on playing or they would risk being fined.
“After the final whistle a couple of their players shook hands but the rest just got into their cars and drove off, but you can’t really blame them for that.”
Wheel Power player-manager Andy Woodward added: “The referee’s biro went blunt after a while. It was a bit embarrassing but fair play to the other team for carrying on – they were really sporting.
“The result will certainly help at the end of the season if it goes down to goal difference.”
The league is set to be decided next month when the top two clash on 8 and 29 April.
It’s not all doom and gloom for Nova 2010 either. Despite their record drubbing, there is still one side below them in the table.
Applebys 2011 hold the dubious pleasure of propping up the record breakers, although their run of defeats this season may well qualify for a record of its own.
The side have lost 21 matches, including a 30-0 reverse, six defeats of 20 goals or more and 13 defeats of nine goals or more . Their only points have come from walkovers.
Wheel Power’s win beats Cornish side Illogan’s 55-0 demolition of Madron FC in November 2010, believed to be the previous record.
Dan Pope, Club Website editor
Tell us what you think!
What’s the biggest victory you’ve ever witnessed? Ever been on the end of a drubbing yourself? Is there any point in continuing a game so utterly one-sided?
And how do a team like Applebys keep motivating themselves after the season they have had? Is that just the beauty of grassroots football?
We’d love to hear your thoughts – have your say in our comments field below.