It was a rainy day at the house of Paine. Perfect conditions for breaking legs, and that’s exactly what BUFC’s “fantastic 4’s” accomplished. An astounding defensive performance by BUFC landed them their first clean sheet this season. This all came down to the tactical genius Sir. Paul Middleton 3-5-2 formation he has been meaning to test out. Starting line up featured our start keeper MARCEL! In the back, BUFC’s towering CB – Richie, Joe and Anders (about time you came back). Midfield line up: Wynton, Dan, Chris, Ferg and Gaz (from left to right). Up front BUFC lined the “nimble” nick that has been in great form and Walsh.
In exchange for unrelenting firepower, the 3-5-2 formation relies heavily on midfield possession as well as the capability and stamina of the Left and right-winger to defend and attack constantly. BUFC was ready to experiment with this formation for the first time. Thanks to BUFC winning mentality and their vast selection of wingers. The 3-5-2 brought a well-deserved 2-0 victory.
First half whistle goes off and BUFC exploded. Pressuring to win every ball they could. The passing on the left was world class with the ball eventually landing between Wyntons feet… Everyone cried “Shooooot” being the outlaw that he is, he decides to pass instead and very nicely delivers the ball to nick in front of goal where he strategically placed the ball in the bottom left corner. GOAL!!!! 1-0 BUFC was on fire.
Maroubra came back stronger after the first goal. They had short skilled forwards who prefer to attack from within the box only to be blocked by the long legs of BUFC’s massive CB. Anders was looking particularly in form for being away all season. Joe was also in top shape considering he had just run a half marathon before the game… (Richie, your always a beast).
Second tempo of the first half BUFC opened up the taps again and delivered great balls to the strikers. Washy took a near impossible control on a lob, beat his defender and even paused in front goal to smile at the keeper to let him know he was about to score. He didn’t.
Second half came about. Four key substitutions were made. It was time for the wingers to be subbed with fresh legs. Tony subbed in for Wynton on the left, Dave for Gaz on the right and Brendan for Chris in the middle. Eddy replaced Nick up front and BUFC was ready to go.
First 10minute of second half was a bit iffy. BUFC touches were not great and they were forced to defend. BUFC regained composure and started to control the game again with some beautiful passing up front. Walshy lays the ball back to Brendan. Brendan had plenty of options: Tony down the middle, Walshy at near post and Eddy at far post. Brendan tries to lob the ball to Eddy who was not covered at far post, the ball bounces off one of Maroubras defender and lands at Eddy’s feet, he shoots! He scores!. GOAL!!! 2-0 – it seemed as though nothing could stop BUFC now. (I would also like to add that Eddy has just only rejoined the squad after suffering a life-threatening ankle injury at the beginning of the season, what a way to regain confidence in front of goal!)
Pressure was back on against Maroubra. Brendan steals the ball in midfield and makes a run to goal… Takes a shot in the 18yard box only to find the crossbar. It was unlucky, but BUFC spirits did not break. Last fifteen minutes of the game Maroubra decides to pick it up a notch with a few good 1-2 plays up front. An interception of Marcels pass to Wynton in front of goal could have been fatal. Fortunately, the outstretched Maroubra striker couldn’t get a proper foot and had a near miss.
BUFC held their ground till the end with defensive substitutions. Phenomenal display by the men with championship gold in their crosshair.