Another tough match for AA4s this week against league leaders
Waverley, who were riding high on a perfect record of three wins from
three. Perhaps our toughest challenge, yet, but the coach was
optimistic, reverting to the 4-3-3 in view of the small Moore Park
pitch. The team was also benefitting from the return of Ross Mooney
and Richie Gadsby and their second game in consecutive weeks; eight
people had even stumbled upon training this week…everything was set
for a classic performance by Barnstoneworth.
But it wasn’t classic so much as typical. The team started brightly
and created lots of opportunities, soaking up any pressure that came
the way of the defense. Nice moves on both flanks exposed the Waverley
backs, and Ed’s constant chasing down kept their keeper on his toes,
but it was a bad pass out from keeper Gary into the path of the
opposition striker that gifted the first goal against the run of play.
Barnstoneworth kept their heads up and plugged away at the Waverley
goal, but Lady Luck was not on our side. A long-range effort from Ross
from the half way line was six feet wide of an otherwise empty goal.
Shots from Eddie, Alex and others all missed the mark or were saved.
1-0 at half time.
The second half started in atypical fashion, with Barnstoneworth fully
switched on from the start. But the opposition weathered the storm
before creating and finishing two chances of their own in quick
succession. 3-0 with 30 minutes to play.
And play we did. The whole team stepped up a gear, and some tactical
substitutions provided a bit of extra pace and energy. Shots from
Niall, Eddie and Ross, and a header from Wynton all went over the bar.
Eddie hit the post three times in a second when the ball ricocheted
back and forth. Stephen dwelt a split second longer than necessary on
the ball and missed the opportunity to shoot on goal. Finally, Ross
saved some blushes by scoring a well placed free kick, but that was
the only time we found the back of the net.
Final score 3-1. This team is surely on the verge of greatness…but
it will have to wait another week.