Date: November 30th 2014

Match report by Luca de Rozairo

It’s been a couple of weeks now since we last played, with both recent games having been called off, so we are looking forward to this game.
We’re playing at the Richmond Upon Thames College pitch on a beautiful sunny day, in our red and black kit again. Our game today was against the Ewell Saxons. They only managed to get 10 players together, and a man down with no subs was going to make it tough for them.

They definitely came ready to play, and we needed a great tackle from Alejandro, playing alongside Joel in central defence, to absorb some early pressure. We then started coming into the game, with more possession and more pressure at their end of the field, with some nice play down the flanks between Phin, Charlie and Rory on the left, and Francis and Luca on the right. Ewell Saxons kept two up front, and they continued to counter-attack. Our defenders and Jayden in goal all needed to be on their toes to keep a clean sheet early in the game.

The breakthrough came when Enrico slalomed through a couple of defenders, played a neat one-two with Joe and prodded it home for 1-0. Our second came shortly after, Francis passing to Charlie who put in a fantastic through ball back to Francis, who held his nerve to slot home for 2-0. A few minutes later, Rory put a strong shot just over the bar, and then followed it up with a great strike for 3-0.

There was great effort all over the field, with a lot of possession in midfield with Dylan, Sylvester, Phin and Enrico. Some great pressure from Phin won us the ball high up the pitch. Martin was unlucky to see his effort bounce off the post, but Nile was on hand to finish it for 4-0. Nile then turned provider as he put in a lofted cross which Francis volleyed in coolly for 5-0 from close range. Alejandro took a long range shot, which was kept out by an excellent save from their keeper, before the ball landed at Charlie¹s feet after some pinball in front of their goal, and the ball crossed the line for 6-0. Their keeper then put in another great save to keep out a great attempt on goal from Nile, tipping in a cross from the right from Martin.

Shortly after, Alejandro was fouled in the penalty area. With Gabby, our usual penalty taker, resting this weekend, Alejandro stepped up and converted nicely for 7-0. Some nice passing between Dylan, Phin and Charlie led to Charlie¹s second of the day, and 8-0 for the Sharks.

Despite only having ten men and no subs, Ewell continued to push forward when they could, threatening with counterattacks. Jayden and our defenders held up well, until a great shot from Ewell Saxons – Jayden dived and got a hand to it, but it was too strong, and it was now 8-1.

With this lead, players were given chances to play in different positions, with Joel up at left wing and Luca on the right.

Charlie was then fouled on the edge of the area. He stepped up to take it, and curled a great ball around the wall into the bottom left corner for his hat-trick, and 9-1. Sylvester, having won the ball in midfield, put a nice through ball for Joel. There was great work off the ball from Luca pulling defenders into space on the right, while Joel finished coolly for 10-1.

Ewell then had a long range effort, which was very well place and on target, and brought them back to 10-2. In spite on continued pressure from Luca and Martin, both of whom had a couple of shots saved, and a near miss into the side netting from Joel, the score stayed at 10-2.

We have to give a lot of credit to Ewell – they kept going, and almost directly from the kick-off. The game was a lot of fun – it was played in the right spirit. There was some great passing, and it was fun to see people in different positions, as well as playing in an unfamiliar spot. I’m looking forward to next week now…