A dull result on a bright day by Rich Fryer
The only reason I read the match reports are to read about myself. I’m missing out as I’ve been given the responsibility to write it this week.
So, we all (nearly all on time) arrived at the away fixture looking forward to putting the memories of the week before behind us. The atmosphere in the changing room was positive and there was great conditions for the game.
From the kick off, we looked good and played some inventive football only to conceed a very unfortunate goal a couple of minutes in. The skipper, playing in his usual left back role went for one of his trademark pings (in other words, long ball clearance) only for him to get his angles slightly wrong. Que the customary slow motion where the ball seemed to be in the air for eternity and heading for the top corner of our goal. James did well enough to get there but was unlucky to see it slip through his fingers.
Following this, it was all a bit uneventful. The opposition had a few chances and we continued to play some good football without being very threatening. There was a great long range effort after a mazy run from defense from Derek that struck the cross bar.
Midway through the second half, the opposition had a strike that beat the goalkeeper but luckily for us, Myers was on the line for it to hit his chest. A great goal line clearance…… or so we thought. The only opinion that counted (the ref) was the one that was sure it was a hand ball and a penalty. There were no real claims from any of the Winchmore Hill players which gave everyone a clear indication that is wasn’t a penalty. James tried his hardest and was unlucky not to save the penalty.
So, 2:0 down and still all to play for. Not one of us on the team thought the game was over and we continued to threaten. We had a throw in in line with their 18 yard box and it was directed into the area. The whistle blew and everyone looked around to see the ref pointing to the spot. He spotted a push. From most people’s view, it was a very weak penalty but all of the AP players knew it was well deserved and was clear evidence that the ref got the previous decision wrong.
Up steps Nathan to take the penalty. Looking very confident and in no doubt that he was going to take it. It wasn’t struck as sweet as he’d liked but there was enough power for the Winchmore Hill keeper not to hold on to his save, and Nathan was able to put away the rebound.
After the half time team talk, we were confident that we could turn the score line around and it showed straight from kick off. It felt like the last 5 minutes of a game with Winchmore having to defend last ditch. Giving away corner after corner. Eventually, from one of the corners, Harold was able to poke the ball into the net from a great delivery from Anthony.
We had been playing well all through the game and having more of the possession. Now with the score at 2:2, we all knew it was a matter of time that we would get another one.
This was our downfall on the day. It seemed that over confidence set in. We were all over them but were unable to be clinical and Winchmore all day were threatening on the counter attack. As time went on, we seemed to run out of steam and were too busy thinking we deserved to win and forgot we still needed to actually win!
Even with heroic defending from the back four, particularly Doug, we seemed to be too overrun and the midfield were unable to track the players after committing to our attacks.
A good solo effort from the Winchmore Hill centre forward made it 3:2 and they put the nail in the coffin near the end of time with another.
To sum up, a good performance overall and we were very good on the ball and played some inventive football. What we lacked, which was real threat in front of goal, was what Winchmore Hill had on the day.
A big sorry to Ryan Taylor that we could make his last game for the club a win.
We have had a very positive 2011 overall and there is a lot to build on in the new year. Well done lads and let 2012 be a good one.
(Don’t forget, 1st game back will be a boys night out so bring your sparkly shoes, curling tongs and lube).