We witnessed the hardest fought and most entertaining game of the 2018-19 season so far, for the Thornes Juniors U9s versus Upton United. It was a great credit to both teams that the game, as the goal score swung this way and that, it was difficult to guess the outcome of the fifty minute game, until the closing moments.
Despite the rain, perhaps because of it, both sets of players arrived on the pitch in good spirits and got off to a quick paced start. Thornes Juniors and Upton were keen to get forward, with defences organised and strong. Just as we were beginning to wonder where a goal was going to come from, on the 17th minute, Hayden Train received a floated pass, controlled it beautifully and shot from long-range into the net; Thornes 1 Upton 0. One minute later substitute player, Jake Gallimore also scored from a long-range shot into the top right of the net; Thornes 2 Upton 0.
Any thoughts that this was going to turn into a rout were soon disabused by two Upton goals in quick succession before half-time. Clearly the away team were not surrendering and to make the point clear, they scored a third early in the second half; Thornes 2 Upton 3.
With Upton scoring three goals in succession, were Thornes U9s going to capitulate? No; both teams continued to play 'end-to-end stuff', and in the 7th minute, a neat controlled pass to Harrison Shepherd from two yards out, was knocked straight past the keeper; Thornes 3 Upton 3.
Still, neither team was accepting a draw, and when Hayden scored his second goal in the 11th minute, this time from a free kick, Upton were determined, right to end to redress the balance. But in the closing moments a pass from Jake to sure footed Sammy Amaefule secured the win; Thornes 5 Upton 3
Team sponsors Bianco Hair World, Player of the Match: Harrison Shepherd
Special thanks to Joe, the Colts U9s coach who stayed on to referee both games
Updated 19:14 - 18 Oct 2018 by Mark Parsons