MATCH REPORT - SELKENT LEAGUE (Spring): JR Spartans vs Russellers JFC - 21st April 13 (Home)
Our seventh game of the spring season saw us face Russellers JFC at our home ground. Although the London Marathon was on in the morning, congestion in the area wasn’t as bad as first feared and most arrived early for the kick off. With a full squad of 11 players, for the first time for some weeks, the game was going to be a game of two halves given the number of changes that had to be made to ensure everyone got a game.
The starting line up was Ben (goalkeeper), George - the birthday boy (right back & captain), Shemar (left back), Jack (centre midfield), Finlay (left wing), Kaci (right midfield) and Callum (striker).
The boys started well with good work down both wings by Finlay and Kaci and great interlinking passing movements with Jack and Callum (a joy to see). For all our hard work, in the 6th minute Russellers scored from an attack down the right hand side and a shot which went across the goal to Ben’s right hand side. Despite being one nil down we continued to play attractive football with Finlay going close after 11 minutes, his shot hitting the side netting. After a sustained attack by Russellers winning three corners in a row the ball was played to Finlay who carried it down the wing and played in Callum who played a lovely ball to Jack whose shot unfortunately went high over the bar (another flowing movement boys). Shortly after on 17 minutes Ben made a great save to tip the ball over the bar. We continued to play well in all areas, both George and Shemar standing strong in defence, but also looking to pass the ball out from defence. A great move on the right hand side saw George play in Jack who then passed to Kasi who then put Callum into a great position for a shot on goal (really good possessional play). With the last minutes of the first half ticking away Russellers got a 3 on 1 break but the resulting shot hit the post. We immediately countered attack down the left with Finlay who again provides a ball into Callum whose shot crashed into the side netting, following a foot in from our opponents. With almost the last kick of the first half, there was some indecision at the back which unfortunately allowed Russellers to get a toe on the ball. Not sure if Ben had two hands on it or not. As a result of the goal Ben got injured and Kaci went into goal and Taran can into the action with Jack pushing out into the right midfield position. Almost immediately Kaci was called into action and pulled off a great save to keep the score at two nil.
Half time score : Junior Reds Spartans – 0, Russellers JFC – 2
The second half started with some changes to give everyone a run out. Callum was replaced by William, Lovell went on at the left wing for Shemar, Ugo went into the right midfield for Jack and Kaci remained in goal. Straight away Lovell dribbled the ball down the left wing and put a cross into the box, the ball finally fell to Taran whose shot just went over the bar. Ben rejoined the game in goal for Kaci after 4 minutes. With just 5 minutes into the second half, Ugo picked up the ball on the right hand flank and put a brilliant ball into the box for William to side foot the ball home into the net. (marvellous goal boys). The goal really boosted the boys and with a quarter of the game left, Taran put in a cross which William collected and shot at goal, only for the keeper to just scramble the ball wide. Shortly after, William went close again only for the ball to go just wide (I celebrated that attempt, as I was sure it was in). On the 20th minute Russellers scored their third after a goal mouth scramble which we failed to clear, resulting in a tap in for our opponents. With the end of the game approaching Lovell scored our second goal after taking the ball down the left wing and firing in a powerful shot that most keepers would have struggled to stop. This brought us right back into the game. With almost the last kick of the game, we failed again to clear the ball from our box and were drawn across to one side of the pitch. In doing so we left two players unmarked in the box and when the ball was crossed in, the ball was just nicked out of Bens grasp for their fourth of the game. As a result Ben got injured for a second time, but remained in goal for the last few minutes of the game.
Full time score : Junior Reds Spartans – 2, Russellers JFC – 4
Managers Comments : This was a game I thought we could have won, but it’s always going to be difficult when you have to keep changing the squad to give everyone a game. This is some thing we may have to look at for next season.
Saying that there was some fantastic passing in spells from the back right through to the front. If you play like that, no one can touch you. I’ve not seen anyone in our league play like that. If we can capture that and work together as a team we will win games like this one and be right up at the top end of the league. A big thank you goes to William for refereeing the game as well. A happy birthday also goes to George from the whole team.
Captain – George
Man of the match - William