Saturday 3rd December 2016 @ Washwood Heath Secondary School
Midland Challenge Trophy
Erdington and Saltley 2 – 1 Gloucester
Goals: Liam and Jaiy
Man of the Match: Resharne
With the seven of the starting nine stepping up from the under 10s, we knew today would be a big test for the boys against a talented Gloucester side. This is exactly how it turned out too, which is why the victory is even more satisfying!
The younger Ton players were brilliant and were supported throughout by a small handful of under 11s boys. Whilst the under 10s have obvious reasons to be pleased with their morning’s work, the older under 11s (Taylor, Tiarno, Danny and Che) should be equally proud. They guided the boys with distinction throughout the game. More pleasing was the manner in which they maturely accepted their supporting role. The under 10s will certainly benefit from being in their company this morning.
Back to the action and the first twenty was very much all about The Ton. With Resharne causing problems down the left, we scored via the left boot of Jaiy, after he burst forward from centre midfield. Chances came and went, although a combination of the Gloucester keeper, who pulled off a cracking save to push a Che screamer wide, and the woodwork ensured the southern district remained in the game by the break.
During the second third Gloucester played their way back into the game and deservedly equalised after creating several tempting chances. Chances were less frequent for The Ton, although Liam showed great strength to hold off the Gloucester defender after breaking away, only to find the Gloucester keeper in his path.
It was back to basics during the last twenty minutes, with the lads looking far more composed and more like the team from the opening third. At the back Aidan and James were supporting Tiarno superbly, as well as bombing forward when the opportunity arose. With Liam back out on the right wing, chances once again started to flow. However with eight minutes remaining on the ref’s watch, it seemed the game would end in a draw. That was until a tactical fluke saw Liam pushed up front to partner Che, before scoring within a minute of his move forward.
All that was left to do was to see out the game, which we did in no short part to the tenacity of Danny and Taylor in the heart of the pitch, as well as a brave save by the out-rushing Tyrese.
Thank you Gloucester for a great game. It’s always a pleasure to lock horns with you and without doubt one of the most respectfully observed fixtures we play. Not once did any player, coach or parent question the ref. Not once was a bad tackle made. From start to finish the game was played in a great manner – competitive but sporting. A perfect advertisement for schools’ football.
Up The Ton!