Mom: *Alex Patterson
Defeat may serve as well as victory to shake the soul and let the glory out. ~Edwin Markham
On a moody day weather-wise down in Chiswick, the first team met a well organised and strong Civil Service team with a good home record.
The AP team were confident we could get a result here and on the back of a win last Saturday we felt we had momentum to push through.
The game started well for AP, maintaining our positive approach in attacking the opposition from the off. However, it became clear that we would have to be on our very best game, as the Civil team had an attack that ended with the ball just skimming our cross bar.
We immediately went on the attack via a goal kick that was flicked on by Richie Hancock to Leslie, whose strike on goal was close.
The game ebbed and flowed either way but it was the Civil Service team that made the breakthrough, via a penalty award which was a righteous and just decision.
What was not righteous and just, was that the penalty was well saved by Martin Smith only to have the referee to order a retake due to encroachment; they scored the retake much to mine and the team’s disgust.
The Civil Service team were quite rampant after that and we struggled to contain them in our midfield areas, although I thought our midfield players tried hard.
Half-time saw us go in 1-0 down and possibly feeling lucky we were at that. Defensively the back four looked solid and was keeping us in the game and the team as a whole had worked really hard, but we were finding it hard to connect with each other and our passing, for the second week, could have been much better at times.
The second half saw us with an excellent chance to equalise, with a free kick floating in to the far post and Alex Patterson just heading wide. A change in formation and personnel was made and we looked a little more threatening, pushing on for an equaliser. However, we were caught out as the Civil Service team attacked and scored, unfortunately Lee Carlin was injured and had to be replaced with new man Mario Bergman replacing him.
The team fought hard and continued to press but defensively the Civil service team were very strong. With 75 minutes on the clock, lack of concentration led to the Civil service scoring their third goal, although a major body blow the AP team continued to work hard and showed good courage in not given in, led by the example of Alex Patterson who earned not only the MOM award but praise from the Civil Service manager for a solid performance.
Although a disappointing result we were up against one of the better and stronger teams in the league, the result in terms of score was, I thought a bit harsh, that was also echoed by the Civil Service manager at the end of the game.
Again we do need to look at ourselves and ask are we all playing to our full potential and are we as individuals taking full responsibility.
As a manager I have to look at myself and ask am I effectively utilising the players in their full capacity and how can I get them to perform better and get the best out of the players I have. Mistakes will and have been made, but we can ill afford to continue to make the same ones week in week out, the learning curve needs to be a quick one in this division, but I feel we will make progress, it’s just how quickly we process things as a team.
This week I have asked the players, as well as myself, to reflect on this game, and previous games, with a view of voicing any concerns, also make suggestions, looking to set things right in our future games.
I believe we have a strong and talented side that can certainly stay in this division and compete, we need to stay united on and off the pitch in order to have the success each and everyone wants, and to keep that faith and belief in themselves and others.
We have a massive game next week against Weirside Rangers at home and I am expecting the team to perform and get a result.
Turn your wounds into wisdom. ~ Oprah Winfrey
Irvine, *Patterson, Carlin, Hyde
Jannece, J. Smith, Hancock, Cornibert,