Scorers: Kelly (2), Patterson
A buoyant 1st XI headed for west London looking to cement their top 2 position, and seeking a hatrick of wins on the bounce. We assembled in good time…even helped set up the goals !…as Old Lats players had got stuck in traffic…and we’d only travelled from north London !
We started brightly with some good build up play and incisive movement, which saw early chances fall to Spencer and Kenga. With the lion’s share of football being played in the Old Lats half, AP got the breakthrough, when Spencer held off his marker and laid off for Kelly to rifle in from 20 metres. We continued to press and really should have made it 2 or 3, with one exchange seeing 3 AP players have the opportunity to bury it.
Frustration, complacency, and niggling crept into our play, seeing us lose composure and control of the game. Old Lats, to their credit, seized the initiative and equalised on 35 minutes with a disappointingly unchallenged header from 6 yards. So we went into half time 1-1, and a calm but assertive lecture from the gaffer, stressing the real danger of ‘ beating ourselves ‘.
The second half started somewhat nervously, with Old Lats looking dangerous on the break, and AP struggling to impose. Morris came on for Spencer with Kelly pushing forward, and gradually AP regained control. From a dead ball, Kier won back possession and put in teasing cross, which evaded their keeper, for Patterson to nod in from close range. At 2-1, tails up and 20 minutes to go Dan O’Leary came on for Kenga to provide added cover and experience to better defend our lead. As Old Lats pressed for the equaliser, German intercepted and played a delightful ball over the top for Kelly to run onto and cooly slip past the advancing keeper to make it 3-1. Morris junior came on for Kier in the last minutes, having agreed to make the long journey as 14th man…top bloke!
So a more convincing scoreline than our stuttering performance suggested, but with HSBC being held at home by the Bank, it was sufficient to see us go top of Division 3.
MOM – Kelly, who is now scoring consistently.
Gaffers Comment: The greatest threat to success this season is our occasional loss of composure and discipline, both as a team and as individuals. Master this and we truly will be the team to fear and beat!