With a rushed start to the game due to an early kick off, Dan picking Oliver L up and just general shitty traffic through the A24/A264 roadworks we finally got a quick warm up in..... Only to be disrupted by the coach that left it until the last moment to tape the net to the bar (only in the goal that we were playing in though funnily enough)!
The players voted for Dan to wear the pink wig of shame but of course, he promptly passed that on to Oliver Lucas :).
With nobody able to run the line, it was my first go for the season... Gary Crosby (now known as Bing - THE OLDIES WILL GET IT) has torn a muscle and Joe has bad back (probably from carrying my ironing to and from the car, that is another story!!).
It is hard to coach and run the line as you can't really give information but I tried. All I can see is that I don't cheat like their lino does!! As Ben reminded him a few times.
On with the football..... Aidan and Oscar were communicating very well from the start and had the back 4 organised.... We did lack support from the wingers but we dealt with the threat they posed us. We know they will give the ball to Omar (their big lad) and he will launch it long and when they don't have it they slide tackle continuously until they get it.
Jack C was constantly caught out as he didn't get the protection from Tommy but in attacking sense we looked great down that side with constant through balls from Jack, Oscar and Tyler with Tommy, Jack H, Owen and Connor running on to them..... Ben, working with Ollie H and Aidan with long range one two's had their full back on toast all day long...... His pace and aggression in his running saw him break the lines numerous times and constantly putting crosses and a few shots into the box.
The breakthrough came when Connor chipped the keeper from the edge of the area and I think this spurred the keeper on as he had an absolutely superb game. If it wasn't for him, we would have had 10!
We coughed up a few unnecessary chances to Perrywood and they took a punt from long range and Harvey was beaten by his former team mate. I think it could have been saved but easy to say from where I was standing!
Rio came on wide left, although we wanted his trickery and guile through the middle. He presented a different type of wing play to Tommy and got his breakthrough when he made a run that Aidan spotted and a long range pass, no shorter than 40 yards, was dropped on to his toe..... There you go.... back in front.
Then, to round off the first half goals, Rio turned provider for Jack H to latch on to his flick round the corner and blast into the net and making it 3-1.
The ref warned us that we needed a quick break as the light was dwindling quickly.... We hurried and I think he shortened the duration of the second half as he wanted to get back to watch Ex on the Beach or TOWIE ;).
We started the 2nd half much better and then we made more subs and then we became a bit disjointed. I think we need to accept that players will be on the bench for longer periods of the game when we are on top and the game is tight. Too many changes can cause chaos. That said, it was pissing down and everyone made the effort to get there so they all had a run out.
Antos, wanting to play a little higher up the pitch, was on the ball A LOT.... Beating players by steamrolling through them but the end result didn't seal a breakthrough until about 18 mins to go when he was assisted by Rio to knock in a goal to put us 3 in front..... Surely game management kicks in and we compose ourselves... NO.
We rushed a lot of our play and switched off at the back to conceded another 2 goals. Both long range efforts and both preventable...... When we close players down, we have to know that we are going for the ball or standing them up to delay their movement. Too many times tonight we just ran at the player and they just jinked past us.... That has to improve lads.
That said, a gritty win against a hard working side that had 3 chances and scored 3 goals. Well done lads on tough, hard working performance. Tonight was about the 3 points and winning when you don't play that well. The positive is that if that was Hawks on a below par performance, I wouldn't want to play against us when we are on fire!!
Let's go again on Sunday as we take a break from league responsibilities for the cup game v Furngate and earn our place in the next round.
Well done to Tyler who was voted MOM and will choose the 3 song playlist for pre game on Sunday (I owe him the MOM gift too).