Saturday 31st October 2020 @ Vale Stadium, Castle Vale
Erdington and Saltley A 5 – 5 Gloucester A
Jack, Reo, Younussa, Uzi, Omari, Kyle, Leeson, Lennon, Keon, Jason and Ebrima
Goals: Keon, Lennon, Jason x 2 and Kyle
Man of the Match: On this occasion, the man of the match winner was selected by Bob, the Gloucester Manager. Lord Bob of Gloucester selected Lennon for the way he drove the team on, especially during the opening two thirds.
When asked to summarise the game, a wiser man than me quoted the 1942 Oscar winning film Casablanca:
“In all the games, in all the years…”
What happened at Castle Vale Stadium yesterday will possibly never be repeated. With 17 minutes left to play, and with a 5-1 lead, The Ton looked home and…well they looked home, if not dry.
Then the game was turned on its head when a hitherto seemingly lifeless Gloucester side rose from the canvas as the referee started to count to ten. Blooded and bruised, the boys from down the M5 dragged themselves to their feet before landing a few telling blows of their own. One goal after another saw the Ton’s four goal lead eroded as the game swung in dramatic fashion.
A huge amount of credit must go to Gloucester for their incredible fight back.
Equally, a huge amount of credit must go to the boys in white. For 43 minutes we played some breathtaking football – some of the best we have played this season. We bossed the game during the opening two periods and were relentless in our pursuit of goals.
Across the pitch, the boys were brilliant. The returning Keon linked up brilliantly with Lennon as the duo bossed the midfield. Omari shuck off an injury scare to play with heart and hunger, causing a number of problems down the flank. While Jason bagged a brace of goals, cutting in onto his right foot on both occasions to rifle home from the left wing. In defence, the rejigged backline made light work of the absence of Rhys and Myiano to marshal their line with confidence and intelligence.
Then, as stated above, the clock struck 43 minutes and the game changed to the extent that it became a perfect game for the neutral.
Despite the obvious disappointment on show following the final whistle, the boys reached height’s during the sixty minutes that they’ve not reached to date this season. That is enough to banish any memory of the score line and fill all of the boys with encouragement ahead of next weeks all-Erdington heavyweight clash.
Erdington and Saltley u10s 4 – 4 Gloucester u10s
Team: Remi, Bryan, Luca, Tyga, Rion, Frankie, Rio, Daniel, Mathaar and Andrius
Goals: Andrius x 2, Mathaar and Daniel
Man of the Match: Frankie – a debut to remember!
If not quite as dramatic, the under 10s game had its own twists and turns to contend with as the lead and momentum switched from Gloucester to Erdington throughout the morning.
In their first ever game as a team, the under 10s showed more than enough promise to convince everyone in attendance that they’re going to be an excellent team. This is especially true when you factor in the under 10s development game that preceded the 4-4 draw with Gloucester – there are certainly lots of talented u9s and u10s in Erdington and Saltley.
A superb Andrius run and finish levelled the scores at one apiece during the opening ten minutes of the encounter. Frantic and end-to-end, the opening exchanges were frantic and exciting.
Moments before the end of the first period, Gloucester retook the lead before extending it further in the early minutes of the second period. With a 3-1 lead, Gloucester looked to be in cruise control, until The Ton boys clawed their way back into the game with goals from Mathaar and a second from Andrius.
With the rain now pouring down horizontally, The Ton lads were knocked out of their stride by a fourth Gloucester goal just when it seemed the momentum had swung in their favour.
Despite the obvious blow of conceding, the boys dug their heels in and re-established a foothold in the game when Daniel equalised late in the game to ensure the boys got something to show for their excellent play.
On a truly miserable morning weather-wise, it was heartening to witness 33 boys pull on the jersey of Erdington and Saltley. The 18 goals in our two games against Gloucester and additional 4 goals in our in-house development game was ample reward for all those who braved the Biblical weather.
Well done boys! We could not be prouder!
Up The Ton!