Reserves beaten comfortably in poor performance
A poor display by Reserves sees them lose 6 - 0 at Bar Hill
On a sunny but chilly evening, we travelled to Bar Hill for our only mid-week game at this stage of the season. The hosts were looking for a win in one of their many games in hand as they aim for promotion, and hoping to at least repeat the victory they had back in February's cup semi-final. For us it was a chance to make a statement. A solid squad was available although so important regulars were missing, giving others to stake their claim...
Team: Luca, Ryan, Wayne ©, Kenny, Matt, Jack, Josh, Rickie, Vagner, Scott, Cam B
Subs: Mike, Jamie, Doni, Rob
We started the game positively taking it to our opponents, exchanging possession has both teams attacked well. It was in only the 4th minute that our main chance came, as a Bar Hill clearance hit a fellow defenders out-stretched arm and a penalty awarded. Scott stepped up and hit low, by near enough for the keeper to dive to his left and push it away for a corner.
This was probably our best spell of the match as we then struggled to keep hold of the ball, especially in the middle of the park, with sloppy passes and the inviting of pressure allowing Bar Hill to get the upper hand. A couple of good chances were missed as well as two goals correctly disallowed for offside.
Midway through the half the hosts took the lead, as a shot across the box was diverted home from the winger who was unmarked in the centre of the area. Soon after Bar Hill went 2 - 0 up as a throw-in freakily crept in at the near post as Luca was unfortunate with the bounce. We started to use the roll-on roll-off system as Doni replaced Ryan shortly before Mike came on for Matt who pulled his hamstring. Kenny was harshly booked for a foul on the edge of the area as a bobble played its part.
A few moments before half-time the lead extended to 3 as a well-struck shot, hit in the hope of being on target, hit the crossbar and post on its way into the back of the net. The half started well but ended very poorly so improvement needed in the second half.
Unfortunately this didn't happen as soon after the break it became 4 - 0 as former CUP player Joe Salvage drilled into the bottom corner when a ball into the box was half cleared to him on the edge of the area. Good work down the right by Bar Hill made it 5 - 0 as a low cross was directed home giving Luca no chance.
Rob and Jamie entered the game following this, replacing Scott and Rickie respectively. Rob had our best chance moments later as he broke away from the Bar Hill defence but his shot flashed across the keeper and narrowly missed the far post. We started to look a bit more solid as we became more organised at the same time as Bar Hill probably dropped down their performance a gear.
Then Vagner, who had been fouled constantly all game with no action take on the hosts, was involved in a slightly mis-timed tackle which saw him given a yellow card. Dismayed by this decision, Vagner laughed in frustration and was immediately given a second yellow and his marching orders. An unnecessary action by the referee who'd had a good game.
With two minutes to go, the final goal was scored as their striker headed home unmarked from a corner as two CUP players missed their chance of clearing the ball.
A poor performance by the team for at least 75 minutes of this match. A solid 5 minutes at the start and a solid period when 5 - 0 behind were the only positives we can take. Unfortunately there are too many players that need to take a hard look at themselves after this and feel disappointed by their performance, mainly the lack of effort and fight they showed. A big improvement is needed for Saturday as 2nd placed Red Lodge travel to the Cass with the memory of a 3 - 1 win back in August but off the back of a surprise defeat to Sawston last time out...