U8s; away v Flackwell Heath, 27th March 2011

31/03/2011 at 11:00 pm | Posted in Match Reports, Under 8s | Leave a comment

We arrived at Flackwell Heath, mostly on time (not a bad achievement given that the clocks went forward last night), on a pleasant spring morning. We have played Flackwell Heath 3 times in the last 2 seasons and always had close fixtures (played 12 matches, won 4 drawn 3 and lost 5); today would prove no different.

Pitch 1 Match 1

Squad: Alex J, Alex W, Gabriel, Kian, Luke, Matthew, Milan, Rishi

The players were given a thorough warm up ( something we had identified as a reason for some slow starts this year was the lack of a well organised warm up for both outfield players and goalkeepers) and started very well. The pitch was very dry and hard which made it difficult for all the players to bring the ball under control and pass it around. However, both teams tried to play good football and the result was an excellent game of football; although chances were few and far between, that had more to do with good defending than any lack of opportunity. Goalkeeping duties were shared by Alex W and Kian; both made good saves and were quick to come out and get the ball. Alex’s distribution from goal kicks was very good; 2 or 3 times he started attacks with intelligent goal kicks to the flanks, particularly to Milan on the right. Milan and Alex J, as solid as ever, were excellent at the back. Milan is improving all the time and is rarely flustered in possession, even when under pressure. Matthew worked hard up front and with a little more luck might have scored. Luke, Rishi and Kian played in midfield; Kian in particular had an excellent game, full of energy and making tackle after tackle while Rishi, playing in the centre tried hard to prompt attacks and make his tackles. Gabriel came on for Luke in the second half and had his best game in a Westwood Park shirt, all energy and good, firm tackles.

Pitch 2 Match 2

The second match was to prove just as hard a challenge but this Flackwell side was very different from the first. A much bigger and physically stronger team, who preferred to play long balls to a forward rarely venturing out of our penalty area, gave us a very different challenge. We fell into the same game with several long balls causing them problems but on balance they probably had the more chances, particularly from some well-flighted corners (Alex W produced 2 or 3 good defensive headers to clear the danger). Matthew and Rishi donned the keeper’s jersey for this game; Matthew, after a tentative start, made 2 very good saves to keep the score equal at half time. Alex J, Milan and Gabriel covered the defensive duties with Milan again the stand out performer. Gabriel moved into midfield in the second half and again proved that he is an improving player, tackling, passing and trying hard to join in our attacks. Flackwell scored after another long ball over our defenders produced a bit of a scramble in our area and their forward scored from close range. Rishi also made a couple of smart stops and couldn’t do anything to prevent the goal We tried hard to find an equaliser; one fine bit of play on the counter attack ended with a smart pass from Alex W to Luke whose first time shot from distance just went wide.

Overall, this was a very good performance in what may prove to be our last league match of the season (I am trying to rearrange 3 postponed matches but we seem to be more enthusiastic than the opposition at the moment). Despite the hard, bumpy pitch we tried to keep and pass the ball and made our tackles. We are also lucky to have so many boys prepared to take their turn in goal, and produce good performances. Well done to all the boys.

Ian and Nick

Pitch 2 Match 1

Team: Arjan, Aaron, Robert W, Archie, Jacob, Alfie, Charles

This was always going to be a tough game for our lads as the Flackwell Heath team had some big lads playing for them compared to our boys!

We started the game well and took the game to them with some great attacking play from Robert, Alfie and Charles! I think we have found a corner taker in Robert as nearly every corner was delivered into the box perfectly (nearly scored a couple from his corners as well)! Archie was fantastic in goal and even though he stopped one shot he could do nothing with the rebound. We conceded a couple of good goals just before Robert fired a corner into the box with Alfie on the end of it to score a fine goal.

In the second half we were able to contain them with some good tackling and passing from Jacob, Ajan and Aaron. We really worked well in the second half with the boys showing a fantastic attitude.

Pitch 2 Match 2

It seems to me that it takes our boys a game to get going as we hit the road running in this game. Archie, Alfie and Robert worked their socks off pushing forward with Charles supporting them from behind. Arjan and Robert worked well together at the back ensuring nobody got past them. Aaron played the whole game in goal and did very well indeed! Before we knew it Archie hit a low drive into the right hand corner of the goal. We kept on top with the pressure pushing forward with Aaron keeping them out at the other end. Just before the break Alfie smacked one into the top left.

Talk about a game of two halves! Flackwell were on a mission. Jacob and Arjan held the the fort magnificently until our boys were caught up field when Flackwell broke and scored a good goal. Just before the end a deflected shot looped over Aaron into the top corner. I think our boys as well as the mums and dads were a bit deflated when that went in as overall I think we deserved a win.

We were really proud of you boys yet again!

Cheers

Paul & Wayne

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