U11's Saturday 23rd November : Eckington Eagles 6-3 Inkberrow Eagles
A delayed kick off on a damp autumnal morning and we were the first out of the blocks. Lovely passing down the wing and a great goal from a tight angle and we were 1 nil up. More pressure and Greg scored his first of the season. Well deserved. Some lovely diving saves from Jake and we went in half time 3 -1 up - with another goal from Josh. Dare I hope? However, in the second half we defended too deep, and we began to concede. Unmarked opposition players punished us and we lost 6-3. A real sterling effort from the boys and such a shame we didn't get the result we needed. We will continue to work on positional play and the results will come. Man of the match Jake and Will for their excellent goal keeping - praised by both the referee and Eckington Manager and lines woman.
Mr S, I note on the below scoreline that something seismic has occurred......
U10's Saturday 23rd November : Inkberrow Eagles 1-0 Droitwich Spa
Fog, cold, turgid mud...and several of the local canines had done their worst under the cover of the mornings poor visibility on the edge of the coaches area of the touchline by the tennis courts - I dealt with this swiftly. A full sweep was then done of the pitch whilst multi-tasking with an issue from my paymasters. No further fouling, but concern that there are new dogs afoot who are allowed to do this without thought of the children who spend an hour and half of their Saturday mornings having fun playing football. Not on! So, to the football. Retaining the formation of the second half of the previous weekends match against Crowle, it was maybe more defensive, but with options and passing that is now really starting to develop into something quite progressive. With our new team member Alex limbering up on the sidelines, probing, thoughtful football, with purpose broke out. Several attacks saw a shot hit the side netting, the Droitwich defence threw themselves at the last minute into good blocks, the momentum was with Inkberrow - Luka was consistently causing confusion and consternation with his twists and stepovers. This continued throughout the first half. Several Droitwich breakaways saw 3 smart saves from Ed. However, these breakaways were occasional, and no end to end goal-fest broke out...sighs from the coaches area as the half time whistle brought positivity on both sides. Jaffa Cakes and Randoms eaten, and a quick pep talk grounded in "if you really want to win this game, then go do it", the team cracked on in the second half. More pressure was being exerted on the Droitwich goal. 3 corners in succession from Harry S - there must be a breakthrough soon. More attacking, passing, attacking. Nothing. Then the fourth corner floated in superbly from Harry S again. Practice on heading has been going well, with confidence slowly rising. With an approach to run in from the edge of the area as the corner is taken, it caused both confusion and with a flick on by Ed and deflection off a defender the ball nestled in the Droitwich goal....the world cup, the champions league, the premiership....the relief....could this be the day? A moment of fortune, hard earned. Everyone was playing well, everyone was pumped up, the subs at the time were jumping....and then a Droitwich breakaway, repelled....then another, repelled again - Tom 'Alan Hansen', was imperious - "you shall not pass" (Gandalf), could be heard on the fast clearing mist. And when it wasn't Tom, Harry N or Ben was there, just in the nick of time. Brilliant! Even on the couple of occasions that a shot was managed on the Inkberrow goal the Cat was in no mood to let anything past. The team drove forward again, Jack jinking through a tiring defence. A shot from Hadley, surely destined for the corner, hit the post and agonisingly went between the legs of our striker. A second goal would have clinched it and calmed the nerves. But it was not to be. However, one was enough. The full time whistle. Nerves shredded. The team joyous, parents readying for wild celebrations. This was Inkberrow's day. It was the first clean sheet the team had clinched since May 2012. And the first league win since December 2012. And so to Man of the Match - in fact, every player on the pitch in yellow and blue should consider themselves man of the match - it was a team effort. Special mention to Tom though as his defending was exemplary with great support from Harry N, Harry S, Ben and Alex. Well done boys!
A big thanks to the patient directors gallery who exploded with elation at the final whistle...phone calls and texts were challenging the 02 network! And thanks to those parents who immediately set to work to tidy up the aftermath of the game...goals, cones, flags, respect barrier all returned to their starting positions from early in the day. Effortless! Massively appreciated - thank you!
Next weekend, it is Tewkesbury Town Pumas again. Last month it was 2-2 at home....this time we are away...dare we dream??!! Come on you Eagles!