14th December 2013.
A bit of a cold and windy Saturday morning brought back memories of playing Blisworth last year when we won a tough game 1-0.
The game started brightly with both teams competing hard in midfield. It was nip & tuck until a fine break down the right by Liam ended in a cross to Ollie D who was standing in the ideal position in front of goal, two touches to control it and a right foot that went in past the despairing keepers hands for 1-0 on 5 minutes.
We started getting on top with Alistair and Ethan strong in defence, Tom coming off his line really well in goal. The midfield was being led well by Liam with Harrison and Robert battling to support him. Then Ollie R and Ethan exchanged passes, created a pass through to Liam, on to Robert who scored a carbon copy of our first goal, great shot into the bottom left corner for 2-0. Josh had also come on, showing some good control on the ball and working well with Ethan moving up the pitch.
Towards the end of the half Blisworth had a couple of good attacks and we were getting pulled out of shape. One of them ended in a good goal for Blisworth for 2-1 at half time, probably a fair reflection.
Second half was a bit more one-sided – in our direction. We were well on top for much of the half but for unknown reasons we were awarded none of at least 3 penalty appeals which we thought were rather clear cut! None of Blisworth’s tackles from behind were pulled up by the ref either – but the boys battled on showing great toughness. Shots started coming but didn’t quite find the net. Ethan had gone in goal for 10 minutes and made a couple of nice catches when the ball was bouncing into a dangerous position.
Then finally after about 6 corners which were forced through great passing play from Josh and Tom we got a free kick, hit by Ollie R through to Liam who turned it in for 3-1. Only 5 minutes to go and finish line in sight.
Blisworth were not done yet and had some strong attacks, one of which ended in a goal that none of us saw following a pretty bad injury to Ollie R’s ankle which really we felt play should have been stopped for, indeed our players were shocked.
We managed to keep the ball well for the 3 minutes of injury time played for a hard-fought 3-2 win to keep our 100% record for this section of the season.
Man of the match today was a tough decision as all the boys, once again, played with heart and got stuck in. However, the winner this week we decided it is Josh. He worried the Blisworth defenders with some good runs up the wing in the first half, but it was his second half performance that was stand-out as he took on board what Rob and I asked him to do in our halftime chat. He started looking up when on the ball and finding for the pass, several of which set up dangerous attacks for the Panthers. Well done!
Thanks Nick W for being the respect Marshall yesterday (not sure if you heard the “exchange” between the coaches near the end of the match?!) and Ryan again for keeping score.