Saturday 1st October 2016 @ Heartlands Academy
West Midlands County Schools’ FA League
Erdington and Saltley 8-2 Harborne
Goals: Ilani x 6, Taylor and Cian T
After making a great start to the season, winning accolades on and off the pitch, the boys continued their battle to retain the WMCSFA League with a commanding victory over a talented Harborne side. Two weeks ago, Harborne got the better of Erdington and Saltley A, when they beat us on penalties in the quarter finals of the BPSFA 6-a-side.
That morning our lads first proved their strength in depth when the B team lifted the title. Last week against East Birmingham the boys once again showed how much talent there is in this squad when they bagged 11 goals despite having 9 players unavailable. The squad was rotated once again today, with a number of boys being rested, for no reason other than 19 doesn’t go into 9! Every week we go to lengths to stress the importance of the squad. Very rarely will we have the same team two weeks in a row. So to have such a strong squad is a great strength.
The first twenty minutes saw the lads take a grip of the game, playing the ball around in a commanding way. The Harborne keeper made a number of great saves, although the boys still went two goals up thanks to captain Ilani and centre back Cian T.
Shortly after the second twenty started, the boys added to their lead when Cameron set Ilani up for his second of the game. Just as they thought the game was theirs, Harborne reminded the lads of their quality when their centre back scored a screamer of a free kick. However the boys refused to lie down and sulk and bounced straight back when Ilani completed his hat trick.
The substitutions continued to flow and could have disrupted their play, although to their credit, the boys saved their best until last, when they scored a further four goals in the last twenty minutes. Ilani grabbed another three goals but the goal of the game went to Taylor who scored a screamer that almost ripped through the net, such was the ferocity at which it was hit!
It is not all about goals though. Tyrese in goal pulled off a stunning save seconds before the end of the second twenty and with the game evenly poised at 3-1. Cian T, Kian B and Resharne formed a formidable defensive unit, despite having never played together. In midfield, Cameron was causing all sorts of problems down the right, due to his incredible work rate and blistering pace. On the left, Blessing was a bag of tricks, linking up well with Che, who used his pace to stretch the Harborne defence and whose hold-up play was a key feature of the first twenty. William added a touch of composure to both the left and centre of midfield, whilst the third of the Kians, this time O’Neil, slotted into the right of defence with ease. Jaiy and Liam continued to belie their tender years and looked right at home against their older opponents. In fact all four of our under 10s players did!
With Gerard, Eddie, Danny and Tiarno due to return and Aidan and Reece soon to step up from the under 10s, this squad could be our deepest ever.
Thank you to Harborne for playing the game in a sporting way and for being a great guest as ever. Good luck in your next game lads.
With the under 11s rested next week, it’s the turn of the under 10s to take centre stage.
Have a great week at school boys and thank you for your efforts so far this season!
Man of the Match: Ilani; six goals from centre midfield.
Up The Ton!