Away league match played on 04 February 2023.
Kicked off at 9:30 AM

A not too cold morning and a lovely team to play against for the majority of today. I found the opposition caring when the boys took a somersault or 2, and really wanted to make sure our boys were ok! They showed a great amount of compassion to both Ollie and Leo when they both took huge tumbles and the sportsmanship shown by both teams today throughout was commendable!

Last weeks match seemed to still be hanging in the air, and maybe overshadowed us as we tried to move on from what can only be described as a farce!

Having a real ref today made a real difference!! We played some lovely football but the end product eluded us time and time again in both halves today!

Team spirit today went to Matthew for the second week in a row - this reflected his performance at the back, standing players up, cool and calm under pressure winning tackle after tackle, and using the ball positively to play forward! A goal line clearance today and almost more than one!!! Listening to his keeper for shouts and a couple of well timed pass backs today too! Well done!

Partnering Matthew at the back and stepping in to the role of centre back was our rather little Reece, normally a towering person fulfills this role, but Reece stepped up and stepped in effortlessly it seemed. He read the game well and was getting to the ball time and time again, partnering really well with Matthew. Let’s work on that partnership with the full backs too - but a really great game from you today! Full committed and getting stuck in in both halves!

Archie, our towering big man! Some fantastic positive play from you today, a force to get to that ball first, if it wasn’t Matthew tracking back with a player it was you. Good comms across that pitch and even with the change of having Reece as a centre back I heard the comms constantly from you! I want to see you pushing forward and higher more and more, and using that full back role fully! Would have loved to see you shoot from your free kick today!

Harrison - you are a captain through and through and wear your heart on your sleeve. You are technically brilliant on the ball and your comms with the team are also fantastic, caught out once in the first half but your head was straight back up and such positive play from you throughout the match.

Pheen - you are always one to track back and help out in defense and you did this tirelessly today! Your work on the wing was brilliant, let’s now work on that central play too, you use those silky skills every week to beat players - don’t get down heartened when things are not going your way, positioning is key to goals and no one know this better than you!!

Raith - a solid performance today on the right as striker, you helped out with the midfield, but I’d like to develop this role a little further with you, and let’s work on that. Your first touch today, was eluding you at times, but when you found it, your footwork was neat and quick and you were able to get your passes away as needed!!

Ollie H - a huge somersault a massive winding and a nose full of mud summed up the effort you showed in that first half! That massive knock came as you were flying through their defense not knowing when you are beat. Queue a return second half, and we saw you getting stuck in again until your ankle flared up! A true engine that we miss in midfield when you aren’t there.

Ollie C - came on for Ollie H and showed us how versatile he was in the first half! The second half when he came on again for Ollie H he seemed so different, your positioning was off at times, leaving the centre of midfield wide open. Where in the first half you used this space to run at them with the ball, we found ourselves a little on the back foot at times.

Harry - a fantastic first half and second half with great crosses into the box, following these up ready to get your shot away time and time again! Helping out in the midfield and back in defence at corners too!! Your comms and read of the game really are commendable!!

Leo - managers man of the match! You got stuck right in today - a change to your position, but boy did you run with it!!! You made so many challenges and tackles and tracked back to help Archie, made intelligent passes and followed those passes to win the ball back if you lost it! A real true grit performance today and great to have you on that right wing with that left foot!

Fin - a much better half of football today using your strength and height really well, getting goal side and a couple of close chances today!! Much improved and I look forward to seeing you build on this performance both at training and in the next match!

Tom - a strength up front and gives me food for thought always. Good footwork, with the ball getting away from you a couple of times before your shot. Sometimes crowded out. But still coming out with the ball, your effort today was second to none as always!

Chase - your cheerleading in that first half is second to none also! You drifted offside several times today and into a central role leaving so much space on the right and not giving Tom enough space. However your touch today was clever, your passes were great and you ran at them with the ball, don’t forget to look up and get that pass away a little sooner!

Caiden - a fantastic performance today and a real difference to your game last week. Your touch was clever and you used the ball well. Running at their defence and working well with Raith and Fin too! Always encouraging the boys on the pitch and when you were off too! Chayley - a testing first half today, not helped when the refs positioning couldn’t determine if the ball was indeed in your hands and then kicked out of! However your kicks were good, you played the ball out this week brilliantly from ground kicks with only one not quite going your way. Keep an eye on your positioning for that near post and those strong hands when that ball is over your head. The second half we saw confident Chayley - and you made a fantastic reaction save that made up for any mistakes today - yes it was that good! You were brave throwing yourself on the ball too!!

Overall we seemed sluggish at times, not getting to the ball first, or even second, standing off at times when we should be pressing. But we played some good football, when we did press, we looked like we would score each time. We need to see the belief you play with in training materialize on the pitch. We made mistakes and were punished for those and failed to take our own chances. We need to be more clinical in our decision making, make our passes count and get back to some simple football, at times making it difficult for ourselves.

We have no game next week - currently - but I will see if we can get together for a friendly of some kind, as I feel this will be beneficial for us at this time! Keep some momentum whilst having time off from a league game!

Thanks to Neil for running our line, George and Steve for running their line… linesman score was whitegrove 3 Woodley 0!

Terry - great call on the KitKats and biscuits, and all parents for your support of the boys as always!

Enjoy your weekend bees, keep those heads up!!

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