MATCH REPORT - SELKENT LEAGUE VASE: JR Spartans v Kenningwell Utd & Danson White - 3rd Feb 13
After a two week break due to a snow covered pitch and then a waterlogged pitch, we were back in action in the Selkent League Vase competition facing Kenningwell United from the division above us and Danson White from our very own league D. We had the oppurtunity to see both teams perform as they played first and were superbly refereed by Kerim. The game was very close and ended up with there being only one goal scored late in the second half, which was in Kenningwell's favour.
Our first game was against Kenningwell United and we showed great composure in every area of the park. So good was our performance that Kenningwell were kept very quiet and had very few attempts at goal to trouble Ben. Defensively, as every week, Shemar and Kaci kept the opposition at bay, time after time making brilliant tackles and forcing the opposition wide. They were continually supported by Taran who is growing every week in the central midfield role. We showed great wide play as well with Jack on the right and Lovell on the left, each boy providing great support to the striker William. We had some great chances throughout the first half with Jack, William and Lovell having strikes at goal.
Half Time Score: Kenningwell Utd - 0, Junior Reds Spartans - 0
We started with a few changes in the second half, Finlay & George went into defense for Shemar & Kaci, Ugo replaced Lovell in midfield and Callum went up front for William. I was nervous that making so many changes would unsettle our strong start to the game, but it didn't and we continued in the same way we had finished in the first half. After all the hard work and pressure the boys put on Kenningwell Utd we were finally rewarded early in the half with a goal from Callum. Our opponents were rattled and we had to absorb some pressure from them. Finlay made a great last ditch tackle to stop one attack, but unfortuanetly had to be subsituted due to an injury sustained in that brave tackle. Shemar came on to replace him. Ben also pulled off a great save very close to the end of the game keeping the score line in our favour.
Final Score: Kenningwell Utd - 0, Junior Reds Spartans - 1
Our second game saw us play Danson White, who we had previously beaten 9-2 in the League. However as we knew from previous match results and how they played in the first game they had dramatically improved. We started again with nearly the same line up as we had started our first game, with Shemar & Kaci in defense, Lovell, Ugo and Jack in midfield and William up front. This game proved to be very even and very few chances fell to either side. However positionally the boys showed a great understanding of where they should and needed to be. Placing throw ins down the line worked well giving opportunities for both Lovell and Ugo to get down the wings.
Half Time Score: Junior Reds Spartans - 0, Danson White - 0
The second half began with a few changes, Callum was on for William and George came on for Kaci. The game started to turn in our favour with Callum hitting the cross bar and both Jack and Lovell going close. After 5 mins Lovell made way for Finlay on the left hand side. Shortly after Ugo was injured and came off and was replaced by Taran. The boys continued to pile the pressure on Danson but to no avail. However it didn't matter as a draw was enough to take us through to the next round.
Full Time Score: Junior Reds Spartans - 0, Danson White - 0
Managers Comment: Wow what a great afternoon of football. At the start of today I wasn't sure how it was going to end up, given we were facing a team from the league above us and a team we had beaten before, but were improving. What today did show me is that EVERY boy is getting an understanding of their role and others. This is starting to show in what is expected in the position they are playing and how that relates to others. The wing play was great, players taking it down the line and crossing the ball in. Defensively marking each member of the opposition and pressing them hard when they had the ball. Fitness appears to be high, while both Kenningwell and Danson looked tired in the second half we still looked fresh and were full of running. I'm so very proud of every boy in the squad, you deserve to be in the next round.
Remember football is a team game and whether you are playng or a sub you are ALL playing a part in the overall success of the team.
WELL DONE BOYS :-)
Can I extend my thanks to Kerim for stepping in at the last minute to ref the first game, also thank you to Sukh and William for supporting with the match cards in repect of obtaining player signatures and generally running around with the cards. Thanks guys you help is great appreciated.