On a glorious sunny day Hugin Vikings welcomed Chartham to Warten road for an earlier than usual 12:30pm kick off. Having not played a game since before xmas and not trained for 2 weeks I wasn't sure what to expect.
Chartham have always fielded very good sides and we have always had very close games which could have gone either way.
Hugin won the toss, captain Reece Igglesden electing to shoot downhill to start.
Hugin started the brightest of the two teams and played some nice joined up football, passing out wide getting crosses into the box. Reece held the ball up well bringing into play Charlie Steine who whipped in a fabulous cross for Mateusz to get onto and head the ball home. It was an absolutely great goal from the build up play to the finish itself.
Hugin then began to get a little lazy and invited Chartham on. Chartham lost a player due to a back injury but strangely this turned into their best moments of play. They played some excellent football, neat passing out onto the wings and crossing the ball in time and time again, Marcus made a great save from a header to deny them the equaliser.
Hugin picked up again and could and probably should have gone 2 or 3 up, Mateusz breaking well down the wing, cut inside to Ryan James who shot but saw it saved by the keeper.
Matuesz was at the centre of alot of the attacks, breaking down the left wing, into the area, shot but just pulled it wide.
Hugin had several chances but to be honest the Chartham goalkeeper was superb, it was going to take something special to beat him from distance.
Chartham had a few chances in the first half and they did equalise with a neat lob shot over Marcus's head after the Hugin defence failed to cleare their lines. A real disappointing goal to give away if i'm honest.
Second half started and it was more of the same, Hugin had the most chances and possession but could not take them. Chartham got more and more into the game, they managed to get back to 11 players on the pitch and looked dangerous in the final third especially due to the 'Rory Delap' throw in that one of their players had. They were also very strong on corners as they attacked them all.
Hugin's defence stood firm, excellent games again from Charlie Howard, Tom, Brad and Michael who came on in the second half. Michael Trann played a great game today, he covered so much ground, put in some great tackles and then in another minute he was up in the opposition third crossing the ball into the box.
With a little over 15 minutes to go, Chartham broke into our area and a Hugin player put a challenge in which I though could possibly have been a foul but the ref didnt give it. We cleared the ball and Mateusz broke into the opposition area and was pushed off the ball which the referee gave as a penalty.
After some discussions over who would take the penalty, Mateusz finally stepped up and slotted home to make it 2-1.
With only a few minutes to go Chartham pressed Hugin back looking for the equaliser but it didn' materialise and Hugin went on to win the game and take the 3 points.
Excellent performance from the whole team today, superb performance from the Chartham keeper and inparticular a brilliant performance from Man of the Match Ryan James !