Away league match played on 21 April 2013.
Kicked off at 10:15 AM

With Rob White absent at a One Direction concert, and Rob Minns selecting his organic vegetables at the Suffolk Food Hall, the entire masculinity of the Greshams squad was in question. Luckily there were 11 players able to resist the lure of boy band concerts and free range eggs, and on a fine day at Whitton, Greshams lined up with Josh in goals, A back four of Tommo, Cookie, Steve Ham and Phil; in midfield Cash, JP, Potter and Froudy; and up front Tom and making a rare appearance, Beardo. The late arriving Steve was on the bench.

After the previous week's debacle, it was important that Greshams started well. While the bobbling pitch made matters difficult,it was clear from the off the both teams were intent on playing football. Froudy and Tom for Greshams were looking particularly lively and were linking up well in the inside right channel. It was from just such a pattern of play that Greshams made the breakthrough. Froudy produced some brilliant skill to get to the bye line and cut the ball back from Tom who hit a great little shot goal wards, only to see it very well saved by the defender on the line.

The linesman was flagging optimistically for offside in a flagrant effort to distract the ref from awarding the penalty, but after some deliberation, the kick was given - though mystifyingly, the punishment for the defender was only a yellow card. Froudy stepped up to take the kick and although the keeper guessed right, the kick had just enough power to effectively go through the keeper and find the back of the net.

The game continued in a similar vein with Greshams in the ascendancy but without forcing the Eastern keeper into enough action. Eastern however were looking dangerous from set plays in particular and from one free kick, the ball was whipped in and the attacker just got in front of his market to send a decent enough header across Josh and into the net.

Greshams were continuing to play some good football however and nearly restored their lead when Froudy, having wandered across to the left, picked up the ball, cut inside, and hit a superb curling  shot that looked absolutely destined for the top corner but just failed to dip enough and hit the angle of post and crossbar. Another chance came and went when Cashen went past his defend and put in a decent cross which looked bound to be headed home by Beardo until the defender appeared and managed to head it clear.

Just before half time though, Greshams did get their second. Tom weaved across the edge of the box with the defenders consistently fouling him. The ref finally gave a free kick on the edge of the 'D' and once again it was Froudy who stepped up. His perfectly placed free kick was headed to the bottom corner and the intervention of the hapless defender on the line only diverted the ball into the back of the net. Greshams managed - not without a scare or two, to see out the last couple of minutes of the half and go in to the break ahead.

Half time Easter 1 Greshams 2

Eastern came out strongly in the second half, forcing Greshams on to the back foot and having plenty of possession but without really troubling Josh in the Greshams goal. However with Froudy struggling, Greshams were not the same attacking force and found themselves having to soak up a lot of pressure.

The equaliser on the balance of play was deserved, but came in the softest possible manner. The winger knocked the ball past Phil, but with far too much force and the ball was running out of play. However as he ran past Phil, the winger created some contact and threw himself theatrically  to the ground. To Greshams dismay the ref bought this obvious bit of gamesmanship and gave the kick just on the edge of the box. A weak free kick was chipped in but, as Greshams attempted to clear, the ball broke very kindly for the Eastern centre half who lashed it in giving Josh no chance.

Steve replaced Beardo and went up front only to have to move to right midfield as the limping Froudy was forced to hobble around as a very makeshift striker. The game seemed to be meandering to a stalemate when another decision went against Greshams. The Eastern striker quite clearly controlled the ball with his hand before hitting a decent enough shot that beat Josh and nestled in the top corner. Greshams waited confidently for the free kick, only to be aghast when the referee instead gave the goal and pointed to the centre spot.

This latest injustice riled Greshams and after this the game became increasingly fractious, with Cashen getting embroiled in a stand off with a defender, and Tommo producing a clattering challenge. Eastern meanwhile were crying about being head butted and punched, neither of which actually happened, while Neil Potter made some theatrical attempts to win a penalty. However there was still a bit more football to be played, and a through ball saw Steve scampering forwards, only to be involved in some pushing and shoving, which the referee luckily adjudged, from a viewpoint half the length of the pitch away, to be worthy of a free kick to Greshams. Unbelievably Froudy stepped up again and this time needed no assistance from a deflection as he curled an absolute beauty into the bottom corner.

The final few minutes saw no real chances to either team and the game ended in what was probably a fair result as a 3 all draw.

Full time Eastern 3 Greshams 3

Man of the match

No need for a vote this week - one outstanding candidate. Until the second half when he was too battered and bruised to run, Froudy had an outstanding game, and even once he was rendered virtually immobile, he was still able to produce a brilliant free kick to earn a point for Greshams. Very well played mate.

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