Top Communicator: B W
A beautiful Spring morning at Harletts saw the start of the tournament month with a fixture against Mytchett Athletic Eagles. A meeting at the start of the season saw Tigers run out 3-1 winners after a hotly contested match...
The Tigers started well, immediately pressing the Eagles as well as shifting straight into their own passing game. There was little between the 2 sides in the first 10 minutes before the Eagles' pressure resulted in a number of corners conceded by the Tigers; and that's where the danger was obvious. The Eagles had a terrific corner taker and a host of players who were delighted to have the opportunity to attack the ball in the box. On the flip side, the Tigers tended to watch what was happening and, more often than not, were second or even third to the ball. Tigers soon found themselves 2 goals down, both from corner situations, and the second a particularly high quality goal!
Once again, the Tigers didn't drop their heads and pulled a goal back, within a minute of conceding the second, with a delightful team move starting at the back, moving down the right hand side with M R providing the assist for L C in the manner exactly worked on in training on Thursday!
Other high points of the first half was A D in goal demonstrating sound goalkeeping technique as well as a fine stop before very bravely pouncing on the rebound with 2 Eagles bearing down on him! Also, the defence worked very well together with good communication and some very good hold up play.
The second half was something of a stalemate. End-to-end football, with some fine passing play from both teams. Tigers held their own, dominating for periods, despite turning the volume down a little before the manager reminded them of the need to talk. Possibly lacking a bit of thrust in the final third, the Tigers' opportunities were kept to a minimum by Mytchett, but the defensive and midfield work was sound - with the midfielders throughout the game tracking back with very little reminding from the manager!
Top communicator went to B W who, despite something of a sore throat, still ensured he talked with his defensive partner and made himself heard as goalkeeper.
MoM went to M R for a solid striker performance that offered a lot of running and pressing across the width of the pitch. His assist, provided in exactly the way that was worked on in training with good hold up and lay back to the attacking midfielder!
A D - Another sound goalkeeping performance with a couple of quality stops and good courage shown. He must slow down when distributing the ball from open play and give his team mates time to get forward. His usual self in midfield with some strong tackles and constant pressing; he must start to make space when team mates are on the ball.
O M - More commanding in defence this week and did well, with little prompt from the manager, to ensure he remained last man. Must ensure he stays calm and keeps it simple - under pressure, clear it out wide; with time on the ball, control look up and pass...wide.
B W - Calm defensive performance with good tackles, blocks and distribution down the line. Some good corner deliveries. In goal, he used his area well, coming for the ball to offload pressure on his back-tracking defenders. Must slow down his distribution and mix it up with roll outs and throw outs as well as drop kicks...but always to the wings.
D S - Played on the left side of midfield to good effect. Naturally using his left foot well, and played some nice skills, in the right place. When moved to the back, he worked tirelessly in holding the opposition up and carried the ball out very well. So unfortunate to see his header just miss to the right of the goal from distance!
T B - Made some crunching tackles in the centre of midfield and ran his heart out. Often involved in the Tigers' attacks and tracked back well to help his defence. Still needs to learn to open spaces up by spreading out from team mates who have the ball, and finding space from throw ins.
S G - Strong runs and tackles down the right side of midfield, helped his defence out as well as supporting attacks. Looking more comfortable when needed in defence, kept it simple when he won possession and distributed relatively quickly to the wing. Must learn to off-load a little quicker when instigating/supporting an attack.
C N - Played a good striker's role, often holding the ball up and made some good lay offs to supporting midfielders. Was quicker than he has been to get his shots/passes away, as demonstrated when only a superb fingertip save prevented a certain goal. Must ensure he stays strong and goes in for all 50/50 balls.
B E - Great wing play both attacking and defending. Hassled the opposition in to a number of mistakes that transferred possession, and drove the attack that led to the goal. Must work on his first touch as he often makes his own life more difficult with a heavy touch.
L C - On the scoresheet for the third week running! Strong work on the left of midfield, with good support to his defence as well as his usual strong attacking play - even went for a first-time shot with his right foot! Must stay calm when in possession as he can often over-run the ball.
M R - Won MoM for his running and pressing and the way he assisted the goal. Must ensure he uses his voice more to communicate to his team mates - often the quietest Tiger on the pitch.
Win, Lose or Draw, Tigers Roar!