On Sunday Canterbury Eagles U15's played host to Tankerton Colts U15's. With many games being cancelled across the leagues due to the rain affecting the pitches, Eagles were lucky and pleased to get this game played, especially as the pitch and the weather on the day turned out to be quite decent. Eagles were hopeful to take their win streak to 2 games as they prepared to take on a team at the bottom of the table with no points from their first 5 games of the season. Eagles had a full squad attend today, however Cristhian Grist picked up an ankle injury the day before so wasn't taking part. New lad Eslam Elnashar also attended as part of the squad for the first time. Hugo Manning-Press and Alejandro Cobena got themselves starts this week, with Hugo at right midfield and Alejandro in an unfamiliar lone defensive midfield role. Eagles went with the 4-1-4-1 formation again, a formation that has proved popular with the players. Ellis Reid was captain for this one.
Eagles looked to take control from the start and show their dominance, which they did fairly well. It only took 8 minutes for Eagles to break the deadlock with a goal from Henrique Zanlorenze, assisted by Hugo Manning-Press. Zanlorenze with the help of his pace bagged himself a brace by the 27th minute, this time Ellis Reid assisting the goal. It wasn't all Eagles tho, as Tankerton had their fair share of possession and chances aswell in the first half. Eagles defence were doing a great job at keeping the Tankerton attacks at bay. With one minute to go in the first half Tankerton got a much needed goal back to keep the game alive for them.
Running in behind the defence to receive a pass from team mates when in a goalscoring opportunity was what Eagles had practiced in training and spoke about before the game started. This was because of the static nature of Eagles as a team in front of goal in the previous match, which prevented the goal tally from being more. Eagles had demonstrated some good runs to receive a pass behind the Tankerton defence already this half, so it was just reiterated and encouraged further at halftime.
It took 3 minutes into the second half for Eagles to get another goal. This time right back Ted Warne-Harvey floated a lovely diagonal pass, up the pitch into the path of Left midfielder Ellis Reid, who burst into the box and finished well. A flurry of tit for tat goals followed after this, with Tankerton scoring next in the 51st minute. Zanlorenze combined with Reid 2 minutes later to complete his hat trick. Tankerton pulled one back again 2 minutes later. In the 59th minute Reid got his second of the match, assisted by left back Charlie Woolford. Although Eagles were the better side for the majority of the match, this period of play was definitely end to end action. Tankerton were not giving up and clearly had hopes of a comeback. One minute later Eagles were dealt a blow when Warne-Harvey arguably fouled a Tankerton player in the penalty area. Tankerton stepped up and converted it well. Eagles luck went from bad to worse when Tankerton were awarded another penalty just 6 minutes after the first one. Warne-Harvey the culprit again, this time with a more blatant charge in the box. Keeper Kacper Bialek went the right way and got his fingers to it, but Tankerton converted it well again to bring the game level. With 14 minutes left of the match both teams were digging deep, looking for the win. The game winning goal came in the 73rd minute when Dylan Saunders in possession near the halfway line, picked out the run of Zanlorenze and hit a diagonal ball up the pitch into his path. Zanlorenze who had used his speed and timing well all game to run in behind the defenders had beat his man one more time and finished well for his 4th goal of the match.
The boys demonstrated well what they had worked on in training. Running in behind defenders and picking them out with decent passes. The majority of goals came in this way so well done lads.
Parents man of the match was deservedly awarded to Henrique Zanlorenze. Tankertons defence were no match for his speed today. He timed the runs and finished in front of goal well. Managers man of the match went to Alejandro Cobena who took on the defensive midfield role like a duck to water. He used his speed, energy and aggression to combat most threats before they reached the back 4. When he won possession he also did well to look up and pick out passes.
Two wins on the bounce, let's hope to make it 3 against league leaders Thanet Colts in the next match. Well done lads!