Alexandra Park 7s 3 – Old Parkonians 8s 2

SAL Minor Div 4 North | October 21, 2017

Scorers: Sulejmani(2), Seidu

Without manager Bancelotti we were lucky to be able to call upon the Spinkerman for his tactical nous on how to counter Old Park’s 8’s and Storm Brian (well mainly Storm Brian). We were on pitch 3, with the wind giving such an advantage to each side for 45 minutes, that even one of Gus’s goal kick’s might have made halfway.

We chose to play in to the wind, deciding that we could pull it back in the second half. Old Park’s kicked off and with the Spinkerman’s wise words of keeping it tight and getting in to them quickly ringing in our ears, we conspired to make Old Park’s look like Holland in the 1974 World Cup final by allowing them to score without any of us having a meaningful touch of the ball, and we couldn’t even blame the wind.

A second goal quickly came from the visitors as a diagonal ball in to the box, aided by the wind caused havoc amongst the defence and fell to their left winger one on one with Harry, who had no chance with the clinical finish. Old Parks kept on pushing, with the wind making clearing our lines difficult, but we managed to look dangerous on the few breaks we had, with Junior and Ditmir linking up well to play in Ben Clarke who had a shot well blocked. Scants started to grow in to the game and was winning the midfield battles and clearing up any knock downs.

With the words of their skipper “let’s get a couple more before half time” and a rousing sliding challenge from Stu Johnson, 5 metres off the pitch, all player and no ball, we grew in to the game. The midfield were starting to find Junior’s feet who turned the centre back, drove in to the penalty area and unleashed a shot, which could only be parried in to Ditmir’s path who calmly finished in to the open goal.

Alex Fellows’ and Ben Clarkes’ energy and link up in midfield was helping us get back in to the game and another ball in to Junior saw him drive in to the box and flash a shot across the face of goal. Junior was not to be denied a third time, as on the stroke of half time he beat the keeper to make it 2-2.

The Spinkerman was delighted at coming in all square at half time as the back 5 of Cook, Thompson, Garner, Robson and Willicox looked (and felt) liked they had played the full 90. We were looking forward to see what we could do with the wind, and almost immediately Symes, who apparently had stolen John McEnroe’s headband on the way to the game, took a long throw which found its way to Ditmir, through on goal 30 yards out. Dit took a touch and the wind and the hill took it away from him as he went in to the penalty area, the ball still rolling but the keeper not moving from his line, then in to the 6 yard area and the keeper still hadn’t moved and Dit with too much time to think missed a golden chance.

It wasn’t long before Ditmir was to make up for the miss with the goal of the game (ignoring their first). We won a corner, the Spinkerman shouted for Turney to take it, Paul decided to let Dit have a go. From the left hand side, Dit confidently placed the ball and stepped back to deliver an inswinger. He took a few steps forward and connected perfectly, whipping the ball in with pace, swerve and Storm Brian. The ball arced over the keeper and the man on the post to nestle in to the top corner, 3-2. Time to press home our advantage of playing with the wind, or not………

Another set piece saw Scants find Symes at the back post, but with more time than he knew he went for the first time finish and hit it straight at the keeper. A good run by Luca down the left, saw him cut it back to Ben Clarke and a sliding challenge from their defender brought out the cries of PENALTY from the Spinkerman from the sidelines all on his own. As we started to to get nearer to the final whistle we decided to drop deep and allow them on. Luckily they only had one chance in those final 10 minutes, but we should have been moore clinical and not even given them that. Even if we were feeling sorry for Harry in goal.

The final whistle goes, the only decision by the ref that Paul Turney agreed with all afternoon and the revenge of Ditmir vs Old Park’s was complete.

MOM – Jon Scantlebury, with an honourable mention to Storm Brian.

7th Team / Match Reports