The UNITS travelled to the sleepy village of Hallow in the first round of the WFA Junior Cup. It was always Cuzers intention to rotate and rest a few today, Seeks and Millette had the Sunday off and Kieron Power was holidaying down under add to this we were still without Kieron W, Azza, Ginge and Jim due to injury. We welcomed into the squad for the first time Ryan Smith and Greavesy as we lined up: Mala, DJ, Chinner, Taylor, Barney, Acer, Newt, Si, Ashton, Trigger and Pountney. Bench was Ryan, Greavesy, Coco, Baker and Gilo.
It was clear early doors the UNITS had a little too much about them for Hallow as we pressed from the off and the flow of football was towards the home team’s goal. Within the first 10 minutes Acer had gone close twice, DJ went on one of his Alves runs and had a left foot shot flash just wide, Ashton tested the home keeper twice and Trigger fired wide from a good position. As is often the way in such games after 15 minutes of total dominance we found ourselves 1 nil down, a real soft route one goal to concede. From a long kick from the home keeper Barney lost out to a flick on and the striker got a yard on Taylor and poked the ball past Mala from the edge of the box. Despite this the UNITS continued to miss chances, Pountney going close, Taylor heading inches over from a corner and Trigger again shooting at the keeper from inside the box.
On 30 minutes we finally got level when Trigger did well to cushion a ball forward into the path of Newts who with one touch released Pountney who raced away and finished clinically first time from 18 yards past the keeper. Ashton was having a fine game and it was fitting he put us in front shortly after. Taylor raked a lovely 50 yard ball from the back which Ashton controlled, cut inside his man and fired into the top corner with his right foot from 15 yards, the impressive home keeper getting a hand on the shot but failing to keep it out.
HT Hallow 1 v 2 TS UNITS
Cuzer told the boys to relax and play a bit more as it was only going to be our complacency which would give the home side a way back into the tie. Barney was replaced by Ryan at half time due to his on-going back injury, Ryan making his competitive debut for the UNITS. Greavesy then came on for Acer shortly after to also make his competitive debut and on 55 minutes Pountney put the game beyond doubt with his 2nd and the UNITS 3rd after some patient build up play Chinner got forward and beat his man in the box, before pulling back to an on-rushing Pountney who fired low into the bottom corner. Tayl's had gone close on numerous occasions already from set pieces and finally got a goal on 65 minutes when from a vicious in swinging Pountney corner Greavesy forced the keeper into a good save and Tayl's poked home from a few yards out.
The UNITS continued to press, Trigger having his own personal dual with the home goal as he was unlucky not to score on 4-5 occasions. Coco came on for Si Hollick with 20 left, dropping into centre midfield. On 70 minutes man of the match Ashton scored a screamer to make it 5-1, from a UNITS free kick some 30 yards out Greavesy passed short to Ashton who took a touch and rifled in an unstoppable shot into the top corner. Pountney had looked lively all game and wrapped up his hat trick on 75 minutes, some excellent football down the UNITS left involving Newt's and Ashton released the now marauding Strap into the box, he cut inside before crossing low for Pountney to finish clinically to make it 6-1.
The UNITS could and maybe should have added more goals in the 2nd half but after a slight wobble we ran out comfortable winners and progress into the 2nd round. We wish Hallow Village well for the rest of their campaign.
Man of the match was Ashton who scored 2 and was superb all day.
Next up the UNITS travel to Malvern to take on Malvern Radar out of the Worcester Prem in the Nursing Cup.