On Sunday Canterbury Eagles U15's travelled away to play Wye Juniors United U15's for an unusual early 11am KO. Eagles hadn't met this team before, but do remember coming to this ground last season, when in Division one to play Wye's A team. That result was unflattering to Eagles so a good result against the B side today was what Eagles was looking for. Wye are having a decent season so far and have got some good results against the top end teams, so Eagles would need to take the step up from last weeks performance to challenge Wye today. Eagles went with a 4-4-2 formation, adding another attacking option as opposed to the usual defensive formation. For the second week running all players were selected and available. Daniel Scott got a start in at right back today with Lucien Eske starting up front. Keeper Kacper Bialek was on captaincy duties today.
Eagles started the match well, getting themselves in attacking areas many times in the first 10 minutes. One soft effort by Cristhian Grist seemed to go over the line before being cleared out of goal, but was deemed no goal by the referee. Unfortunately this was to be the only decent spell from Eagles, as it all went downhill from there. Wye got their 1st goal of the match in the 9th minute. A decent strike at an angle, from the right of the goal was struck hard and high which went through the keepers hands. Eagles were dealt a further blow when in form left back Charlie Woolford came off a minute later due to feeling unwell. Wye doubled their lead in the 13th minute. With 7 minutes of the half left Wye took a free kick from the left about 20 yards out, the delivery made it's way deep into the box which met their player for a simple tap in. Wye had taken a firm grip of the game this half, with Eagles looking a shadow of what we have seen them produce before.
Eagles had to take the positives of only being 3-0 down at this point, courtesy of some great early reactions and shutting down quickly from keeper Kacper Bialek. Eagles also needed to find their form and desire to try and find their way back into the game. The formation stayed the same as goals is what was needed most now. No subs were made but a change of personnel in different positions did occur.
The second half started badly for Eagles, with Wye scoring in the first minute. An attack from Wye found it's way through the Eagles defence, only this time Bialek who had been saving the day with his numerous saves, mistimed a rush out. The Wye attacker played around Bialek who had committed to ground and slotted the ball behind Bialek into the empty net. Three more goals for Wye, in similar fashion to the last one, followed next before Eagles consolation goal in the 64th minute. With all other attacks from Eagles fluttering out, this one managed to find it's way through. Ellis Reid on the left spotted the central run from Henrique Zanlorenze, the pass squeezed past a Wye defender to Zanlorenze. With quick, clever feet he passed the last man in front of him then finished well beyond the keeper. Wye finished the game off with three more goals after this.
A bad day at the office all round for Eagles. Defensively the timing and commitment was lacking. The wide midfielders only interested in attacking and not coming back or supporting the central midfielders and the attack were not linking up well enough to progress into the final third. All things to address and work on going into the next match.
Although no one had the perfect game today, some players put in a decent shift, demonstrating good effort levels and a desire to do their job from start to finish. In particular Alejandro Cobena and Kacper Bialek.
Kacper Bialek was deservedly awarded both Managers and Parents man of the match today. Although Eagles conceded 10 goals, they were definitely not a reflection of bad keeping, rather the result of outfield errors. Bialek who is still in his first season of being a goalkeeper, is still learning the ropes. The week before he showed a lack of knowledge in what to do in 1 vs 1 situations. Since then with a chat or two and a bit of work, Bialek picked the perfect game to implement his new found knowledge and skill set. Bialek was a machine at timing when to rush out, make himself big and shut the strikers angles on goal down. He was so confident doing this and managed to collect and save the ball many times. He also pulled off some great saves in general aswell. Well done.