Headstone Manor 7 – Alexandra Park 0

GLWFL Div 2 North | October 11, 2015

It was another sunny Sunday in London, and AP Women were looking to notch their first W of the season. We experienced a brief moment of joy when it looked like we had 12 players as Kat decided to make her glorious return from maternity leave, but the joy was short-lived when Beth’s plague got the better of her and she cried off not 5 minutes after Kat announced her return.

We made our way to Headstone Manor’s pitches with only a few navigational hiccups (why does no one believe in signage in this country?). Our 11 for the day were a determined bunch, but we were suffering from the get-go as Athena was battling a nasty cold, a number of players were still nursing injuries from the previous week, and Kat and Tash were both coming back to the pitch after some time away. We had toyed with different formations over the last few weeks, and decided to go with the 4-4- 2 which had brought us close to victory the week before, albeit with different players. Things started out well, with lots of runs up the side and passes connecting from the backs to the Nicky, Tash, Jennah & Athena in the mid, and some nice runs in the front by Tracy & Helena. We were under pressure from Headstone though, and they got lucky with a cross from the corner that snuck between our defenders, and they managed to strike one in. Things were not too grim at this point, but soon enough the sun plus her cold less an inhaler took their toll on Athena and she was down and out for the count. Down to 10 players. Fu*k.

So then some other stuff happened which I don’t recall, but probably included flashes of brilliance by AP. Eventually Headstone was awarded a corner and the cross dropped in front of the net. It bobbled around for a while, bouncing off various body parts, and Harry and I both tried to stick our feet in to get rid of it. Somehow I ended up folded over and pinned under Lale, our valiant keeper, which forced my neck to go in directions it wasn’t too pleased with. So I didn’t actually see the second goal go in, but apparently it happened. Fuck.

We managed to finish out the first half without any more goals against, although the back line (Eline, Harry, Kat & me) was taking a beating. We gave ourselves lots of positive pep talk at the half, some stuff about getting first to the ball and being the ball and maybe going to a ball. There were no oranges.

Athena rallied for the second half and we were back to 11, but we were outgunned for most of the second half. Headstone may or may not have changed their formation, but they sure seemed to be running through us a lot more and they definitely had subs, and we did not. We were all getting tired, and broken, and Headstone took advantage by ringing up the goals. First one. Fuck. Then another. Fuck. Then three more. Fuck fuck fuck. We didn’t score, which would have made a difference to our morale, if nothing else.

So another week, another missed W for APWFC. It wasn’t the birthday gift Eline was hoping for. But at least it was sunny.

PoM: Dirksen

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