On a lovely, level pitch at Alfreton Town FC, the u12s took on their elder rivals in an end of season friendly. All the players were excited to be there and both dressing rooms were buzzing prior to kick off.
It was the u13s who started more brightly with the u12s chasing after the ball before they began to settle down and pass the ball around. It was hard work though on the large pitch and against bigger boys. Shots began to fly towards the opposition goal with a number of chances going narrowly wide or straight at the keeper. Vardy opened the scoring. He picked the ball up on the edge of the area and hit a low shot into the corner of the net. This was after he had already hit the post.
The u13s had a chance to equalize before half time. A near post corner was headed towards the net and Carter cleared off the line. The back four were resolute and Bate had very little to do. Booth and Cook working well together, Langham supporting Hardy. Sprengel was colossal against the tall u13s midfielder.
The second half was very similar, although the u12s had much more possession and looked dangerous going forward. Hunt scored the second after clever play between Hardy and Birks. The ball threaded through to him and he steered it past the advancing keeper. At 2-0 the u12s looked comfortable.
However, the u13s clawed a goal back. A free kick was hit high into the box and Bate was caught in two minds. The ball bounced right in front of him and into the net.
Always looking dangerous, the u12s had other chances. Lowe hit the post with a sweeping shot, Birks was narrowly wide with a thunderous cross shot. Hamisi, always lively, waltzed through the area a number of times but just could not get a shot off. Richards worked hard in midfield and put in some ferocious tackles, as did Mogford.
The u12s were worthy winners of this hotly fought contest, although all the lads of both teams enjoyed playing in a Conference League Stadium.