Old Stationers 4-1 Oldsmiths, League fixture.
Pre-season had been a bit of a mixed bag for us, with some decent performances being cancelled out by some equally shocking one’s – but the main aim for us was embedding our new players into the team and trying to develop a good understanding with each other on the pitch.
The day started in typical Sunday League/Stationers fashion, 14 players whittled quickly down to 11 before 12 o clock and no-one being sure if Pel was going to make it on time to start in goal. Luckily, he did and just like that the race for promotion was under way.
We had won the toss and decided to go up the famous slope first. The first half an hour flew by without much really happening in the game. A penalty shout for Simon the closest we came to creating anything in front of goal, but we looked solid at the back and were getting the ball down and playing nicely though Jacko and Wattsy. The referee didn’t waste any time in getting to know his new toy boy David – giving him a dressing down early doors for some abuse.
Towards the backend of the first half we took the lead. A nice move down the left saw Breen and Seany combine to set Bradley away and his low cross found Simon ghosting in at the front stick to finish nicely and put us ahead. We went into the break 1-0 up knowing we had done the hard part and if we kept to the same level of performance in the second half, going downhill, we would be toasting to 3 points after the game.
Just before the start of the second half I said to Jacko ‘A quick second would be lovely here’ and we got one through Elsey after good work from Simon. Just as it seemed we were coasting to three points we were hit by a soft goal to concede – an unmarked header from a corner left Pel with no chance. 2-1. We were shocked and nearly conceded another but Perry made a fine one on one save. After a resounding defeat in our last pre-season game it would have been easy for us to lose our heads at this point and capitulate but we showed good character to keep playing the same way and gained control again after a quickfire double from Seany. There was still time for some drama as Elsey broke away and fired wide despite screams for him to put the ball out as someone was down injured. Very unsporting. This resulted in some pushing and shoving and the referee finally got to get David’s full name and number. Booked.
We run out 4-1 winners. Shoutout to Wale and Brad making their competitive debuts for the team, very impressive. All in all, a very good start to the season for us. Old Blues away in the cup, again, next (heated balls in the draw I reckon) and the same performance will be needed to come away with a result. COYS.
Team: Perry, Wale Jacko Wattsy Brad, Jamo Elsey, David Simon Breen, Seany
Goals: Simon, Elsey, Seany (2)