After a hard fought victory away at Wilmslow two weeks ago it was the return game with the ultimate prize at stake of reaching the final on the 15th May at Trafford FC. Wilmslow being still very much in the mix, had to win to maintain a challenge.
Wilmslow play some excellent football and on our pitch, which was in fantastic condition, they started the game brightly. Their two and three touch passing was causing us some problems across our midfield area and our two defenders, Thomas M and Thomas Dy, plus our goalkeeper, Daniel, had to be at their best to keep them out in the opening 10mins. Once we started to compete rather than give them too much respect and room we looked like a team. We started to play and pass the ball like we can and from a superb corner by Thomas H, Thomas Dy attacked the ball and beat their keeper to it to bundled the ball into the net off his head/chest to give us a 1-0 lead. The remainder of the half was tight with Wilmslow having their fair share of possession without troubling our goal due to excellent performances from the back three. We had a couple of half chances on the break through Nathan, Pearse and Thomas Da but their keeper made a couple of excellent saves. So the score at half time was 1-0.
We told the boys at half time that they had to be more alert and ready to compete against a very good footballing side, plus when we had the ball we needed to keep it better and look to make an easy pass rather than taking too many touches or trying to make an impossible pass. They had their hands on a place in the final but they had to go and grab it in the second half.
The second half started off in the same manner as the first with Wilmslow being in the ascendency without creating too many opportunities. Our boys started to step up their workrate and dominate the ball, chances were created for Flynn and Nathan but their keeper made superb saves. Wilmslow still were dangerous and from a corner which we didnt clear they equalised with a wonderful strike from the edge of the area that gave Daniel no chance. Last season at this point, we would have drawn or possibly lost this game, but not this season !!! Wilmslow drawing level was the kick start our boys needed and they started to play and compete like we know they can. Winning first balls, second balls and passing with composure and accuracy. After some marvellous football, Ryan put Thomas H through and his pass to Flynn was struck first time and the keeper made another wonderful save. From the resulting corner, again superbly delivered by the Captain, Ryan attacked the ball in amongst defenders and his touch fell to our ace marksman, Flynn, who was alert to turn the ball in and gave us a 2-1 lead. The boys celebrations was a joy to see. THey now knew what they had to do and this seemed to knock the stuffing out of Wilmslow, and we started to dominant all over the park, playing some great football and creating chances a plenty. Both Thomas H and Ryan had strikes from outside the box superbly saved by the Wilmslow keeper and Flynn, after a great cross from Nathan, was unlucky not to score. With only minutes left they were awarded a free kick just outside the area but Daniel made a superb save and the ball was cleared. The final scoreline was 2-1. The boys joyful celebrations and smiling faces at the final whistle was wonderful to see.
We congratulated the boys on showing the battling skills necessary to win a football match when you are not at your best. Wilmslow are a very good side, and we could possibly still meet them in the final, so hopefully the boys have learned a lot from today. Everybody played their part in a hard fought victory, but special mention was given to the three boys at the back Daniel, Thomas M and Thomas Dy, who were immense, with the latter deservedly getting the Man of the Match.
We have one Cup game left, against Fletcher Moss at home on the 16th April 11am kick off, which if we win, will see us for definite finish TOP OF THE LEAGUE !!!!!!!
We are away at Broadheath, in a friendly, on the 9th April 9.30am kick off.