Catholic 0 SBV 2 , Benfleet continued their winning run and also extended the period of not conceding and goal to six matches. How one year has changed Benfleet's fortunes as those who can remember, it was not until the last game of the season against Laindon did we keep a Clean Sheet in 2011.
Team News before the game. Perry in, then out. Keith in then out as Mrs Keith and Keith Jnr made it difficult to get away. Tony Perry, it was his week, so in, but out as it was mothers day, as was Mathew. Darren Edmondon alas still out and lastly Lee who had broken is ankle but then did not so was out. In was Mark Dennison who stated could only do a half so was half in and half out. Gary therefore was playing out but because of Keith's late cry off was now in.
To the game……...
Game started, it was clear Catholic were up for Game. Benfleet found themselves on the back foot as in greyhound terms S.A ( slow away).
This however did not last long as the defence looked assured and Catholic were slowly pushed back. After 5 minutes a through ball played over the Benfleet back four after cleared Catholic a corner saw useless Mathew and Gary attack the same ball but from differing positions . Gary in goal and Mathew chasing back. Mathew then lobbed Gary with a deft header, But as we all know Mathew can't score from three yards so we all saw the ball hit the post and deflect along the goal line. In an attempt to score an own goal Mathew got to the ball first and sliced the ball wide of the gaping net. A SBV let off, but it did have the effect of awakening the whole team. The game changed.
Benfleet asserted themnselves. Drew went off injured and Harry walked on, the sideline wasn’t sure we had made a substitution?.
The Midfield then took control and the pressure was then all now in Catholics direction. This pressure saw three shots in as many minutes go slightly wide of the Catholic goal however the fourth saw the Goalkeeper save with Simonelli following up (which all good forwards should), he witnessed to his delight the ball squirm away from their keeper. He duly pounced onto the opportunity, rounded the keeper and slotted the ball home. 1-0 to SBV.
The game continued with SBV again pressurising the Catholic goal but Catholic strong on the counter. SBV defended well and saw plenty of pressure on the Catholic goal. Shots went over or were narrowly wide. Which is common when you have Cliff and Chris Miller Playing.
However after 35 Minutes a through ball was played over the Catholic defence and Mathew chased. Their keeper cleared the ball and hoofed the ball out which found Miller just inside the catholic half. Last year the same person from an equal distance ( but then playing for Catholic) received the ball from 35 Yards and hit an absolute screamer past Keith into the bottom corner however this time noticing the keeper was out of position, "Beckamesk" chipped the ball back and found centre of the goal 2-0
From then on Catholic huffed and puffed but created little whilst Benfleet continued to display dominance. Midfield showed we had the better of the opposition's Midfield. Defence showed we had better of their attack and the forwards demonstrated that SBV were a continued threat. Half time 2-0.
Morgan spluttered out his half time words which I think said SBV had a good half. In addition the plan to put Powerhouse Harding up top when Dennison went off for mothers day ( who's the mother we don’t know) and pushing Matt Back to the middle of defence.
Second half continued and it was clear Catholic showed more urgency but still only created one shot which Gary did well to save. Substitution made. This had the effect of increasing the weight of the respective forward line into Benfleet's favour by quite a bit ( this is a statistic often used in rugby) The game continued again Catholic pressed Benfleet countered. Harding saw a header go over. Simonelli had a shot go over whilst Gary swept up all they threw in Benfleet's direction. In all they had but one more chance all second half. Benfleet held and showed why they had kept so many clean sheets prior to this game -Yes they had given up w**king….. That what I was told. Final whistle 2-0
Benfleet showed what a strong squad it has. Dominated most of the game and showed resilience when needed. Two more games to go. Two more wins needed or this is all academic. Remember bob the builder " Yes we can ".