Alexandra Park 3s 0 – Old Thorntonians 5

AFA Junior Cup | October 19, 2013

Well the start of this day was a bit of a farce.  As skipper I made a classic error of telling the team that I’d be there at 2 (for a 2:30 kick off) rather than 1:30 which translated in the minds of the many of the lads as get there for 2:15.  With time ticking on and the 7 players there thinking back to a few away trips from last year with similar squad numbers, we had a fortuitous (albeit unfortunate) hand from the ref.

At 67, I wasn’t 100% sure how he’d jog around the massive Wembley pitch, and fears were further compounded when he slipped and fell hard in the changing room whilst wearing his studs.  What initially looked innocuous actually resulted in calling out an ambulance and managing the ailing chap until it arrived.  I must say that the team responded excellently to the situation and that is a massive credit to their character.

Unfortunately all this drama completely distracted us from the task in hand of playing football and, with only 10 players still, we started the game slower than a Martin Egan punch line.  We managed to hold out for 35 minutes but goals were inevitable, particularly when Kurt was injured under a heavy challenge.  With Adam Bruce now getting changed, we defended set pieces with our thoughts on the free flowing, Arsenal esque football we’d play when he’d done his laces up.  This allowed the visitors to take the lead into the half time break via two very poorly marked corners.

The noise at half time was all about hitting them hard in the second half and imposing our now full team on the game.  This we failed to do and we only carved out one or two chances.  The back four were frequently over loaded and an inability in the team to pass to feet over 5 yards compounded the problem.

The Thorntonians team were a good squad and would have given us a game regardless of which team we had on the field.  They said that the team trained together twice a week –  this is a key difference and something we need to change.  On Tuesday only two 3rd team players were there (myself and Denzel), I want to see more next week!!

Back to the league and Ibis away this Saturday, lets go out and remind ourselves exactly why we should be winning the league this year!!

MoM : Molly (Andy Sievewright’s daughter) for collecting all the balls on the frequent occasion Thorntonians missed our goal.

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