Saturday 21st April 2018 @ Heartlands Academy, Nechells
BPSFA Chris Smith Cup qualifying tournament
Team: Padraig, Ethan, James, Mason, Klechai, Aidan, Toby, Reece, Daniel and Tavani
Goals: Daniel, James and Reece
Man of the Match: Daniel – Held the ball up superbly, tirelessly rain the channels and proved a force in midfield when dropped deeper.
Goals from Daniel, Reece and James ensured The Ton finished top of the qualifying table and will now contest the final of the BPSFA Chris Smith Cup for a fourth year in five. A trio of committed and positive performances from the boys, helped the boys finish with two victories and a draw from their three qualifying games.
There have been times this season when we have been our own worst enemy. Heads have dropped when they needed to be held high, tempers have flared when calmness was called for and silly arguments have got in the way of the business of being a team. At times we have played as individuals rather than as a team. However none of the above characterised today’s efforts.
This morning we were brilliant. From start to finish we were committed and hungry, working tirelessly for one another. The spirit amongst the boys was evident for all to see.
In our opening game we beat a battling Aston side by a single goal to nil. After dominating the game for the opening 16 minutes without reward, the boys would have been forgiven had they got frustrated. However, they continued to work hard and were rewarded when a sublime Reece cross was slotted away by the excellent lone striker Daniel.
After a scrappy opening half against South Birmingham, the boys turned on the style in their second game following the halftime break. With the South keeper in imperious form, it was left to centre-back James to break the deadlock via a stunning free kick from outside the area. Then with seconds left on the clock, Aidan pulled off an amazing game-changing block to prevent South from equalising, before releasing Reece on the break. As he closed down on the South goal, Reece controlled the ball and his nerves to coolly slot home to double our advantage.
The opening two wins were enough to guarantee The Ton a place in the final and meant the boys could enjoy their third and final game. With Toby rested following 40 minutes of selfless running, Ethan was restored to the team after recovering from a robust challenge in the opening encounter against Aston. The u9s defender once again made a mockery of the fact that he was playing two years up, putting in a great performance in the final game of the competition.
Just as Ethan had, Mason, Klechai and James all made a great contribution to the team’s defensive efforts, helping the boys to three clean sheets from their three games. Between the sticks, Padraig continued to build on the recent fabulous form that saw him chalk up a stack of clean sheets during the Easter holidays, pulling off two great saves in the South Birmingham game.
After coming into the side following Ethan’s injury against Aston, Tavani had a stormer, proving a threat to all three teams that we played. Aggressive and skilful, the St. Clements winger was a menace all morning, creating havoc down the right and left wings, as well as smashing a ferocious shot off the post that sent reverberations throughout Heartlands!
With the Sutton Coldfield game ending 0-0, it meant we ended the day unbeaten on 7 points and proved what we are capable when every ounce of effort is put towards the good of the team!
This could be a very exciting end to the season!
Well done boys!
Up The Ton!