Home league match played on 25 August 2013.
Kicked off at 10:15 AM


Manager Cashen’s close season activity in the transfer market was in evidence as Greshams gathered for the start of their 2013/14 campaign. New faces were very much in evidence in a crowded changing room – Greshams had an almost unprecedented three subs with Ryan unfortunately not even being required to play! The team for the start of this promotion seeking season was named as Josh in goals; a back four of Cashen, Rich Minns, Steve Hamblin and Froudy; in midfield, Matt, Tom, Rob and Richard Hunn; and upfront, a reunited pairing of Steve Burton and Steve Norfolk. On the bench were Sam Martin, Luke Bloomfield and Snelly.

After a rigorous pre season, consisting of one friendly, Greshams were quickly in to their rhythm and passing the ball around well. Very quickly they began to create chances but a combination of some decent goalkeeping and poor finshing was letting them down. The opposition Meadlands were offering little by way of attacking threat, and when they did it was usually in the shape of long balls through the middle. However they were looking reasonably threatening on their odd incursions into the Greshams half and took the lead when a good looking ball was whipped in from a free kick on the Greshams right. The ball curled dangerously between Josh and the defence and the Meadlands forward managed to connect with some part of his body and knock it into the net.

This setback didn’t trouble Greshams who simply continued to press forward in search of goals, with some fantastic play from the midfield and front two and Froudy also getting forward effectively from right back. Both Burton and Froudy had chances with set plays but both were unlucky. The clearest chances fell to last season’s Mr Reliable, Rob Minns. First he found himself one on one with the keeper after a super through ball from Tom, but with almost too long to think about things, blasted the ball straight at the keeper. The next chance was all Rob’s own work as he picked the ball up on the edge of the D and showed great skill to beat three or four defenders. However, just as he seemed about to round the keeper and knock the ball into an empty net, he took a touch that was too heavy and knocked the ball too far ahead of himself and out of play.

With Richard Minns always looking to get on the end of Froudy’s dangerous corners and both strikers looking lively, the missed chances were becoming a bit frustrating for Greshams who were glad to level up the scores shortly before half time through a complete fluke. Steve Norfolk knocked the ball out to Richard Hunn who advanced and hit a lovely left footed cross which however sailed over the keepers head and in off the far post!! After so many chances Greshams were happy to take this stroke of luck and go in level at the interval. However, they were grateful to Josh for preserving the one one scoreline, as on the stroke of half time, Meadlands had a decent effort from the edge of the box which Josh did really well to palm away one handed. Meadlands followed up but from a narrow angle, the ball went in to the side netting and Greshams could breathe easy.

Half Time Greshams 1 Meadlands 1

Understandably on such a hot early season day and a hard pitch, a bit of fatigue crept into Greshams play in the second half but nevertheless, the chances kept on coming. Shortly in to the half Steve Burton, struggling with a chest infection, was replaced by Sam Martin with Froudy going to right midfield, Matt to the left, and Richard Hunn up front.

However with Tom still pulling the strings in midfield and Froudy now prominent down the right, the chances kept on coming for Greshams with Steve Norfolk having a couple of chances that he would normally expect to put away - one in particular that he blazed over following a great team move to create the chance.

With twenty to go Greshams made another change as Steve Norfolk was replaced by Luke Bloomfield with Rob going up front to partner Richard Hunn.  Rob soon had another good chance as he was played through by Cashen to find himself with a one on one similar to his chance in the first half. Again however, he seemed to have too long to think about things and unaccountably blasted the ball high over the bar.

With the time ticking away, Greshams began to despair of ever getting the breakthrough their play deserved. With just minutes to go, the ball came to Froudy on the edge of the book, set up perfectly for the right footed shot. Froudy caught the ball an absolute treat but to everyone’s despair, it crashed back off the post, to confirm that perhaps this was not to be Greshams’ day.

Finally however, the breakthrough did arrive and Rob was again involved. He showed good pace down the left and got the shot away which the keeper could only parry on to the feet of the onrushing Richard Hunn, who literally could not miss from a range of about six inches.

Snelly then came on as Greshams looked to run down the clock and, although they might have expected a nervous last few minutes, they were rarely under any pressure and saw the game out comfortably to emerge 2-1 winners.

Man of the match

A difficult one this week with the team performing really well. Josh made one outstanding save when needed, the back four were solid, and the midfield and forwards combined to play some excellent football, with Tom as ever pulling a lot of the strings in midfield and Froudy causing all sorts of problems down the right.


However for an all action midfield performance the Moet goes to Rob this week.  Despite missing a few chances Rob was continually involved in the play and in the end set up the vital winning goal. Well played mate.

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