The odds looked stacked against Kew, as the Barnes pitch was covered in autumn leaves and we were a player short with 30 mins before kick off. Parents, players and coach rallied around to clear the pitch and field a full team.
Kew had all the early play, forcing Barnes onto the back foot, but we could not convert our chances. And so it was Barnes who took the lead with a breakaway goal.
The pattern of the match continued, however Kew were now finding their range and their attacks were more incisive. Soon we were level and within minutes we were ahead with another passing move and jinking dribble. And then daylight, as we scored a third. Kew were bossing the game as the half time whistle came.
HT: Barnes 1-3 Kew
The second half continued in much the same way as the first. Kew having most of the ball and creating most of the chances, but attacks broke down before we could apply the finishing touch. Kew were then made to pay for their profligacy in front of goal and defensive frailty. We passed the ball across our own penalty area straight to the grateful Barnes striker who couldnt miss from 6 yards. 2-3 and the pressure was on for Kew!
The match resumed its usual ebb and flow, with Kew dominating the ball and Barnes hitting on the counter attack and exploiting our heart-in-mouth defending. With no substitutes, Kew's began to tire. The midfield were no longer tracking back, our defenders looked leggy and out of puff.
Then a decisive blow. A left-footed cross arched in perfectly for our right winger to volley in to the roof of the net. We could breathe again with our two goal lead restored.
It wasn't over as the referee found an Everest of extra time to play - while coaching the Barnes team! And allowed play to continue until Barnes grabbed a consolation third. Final whistle allowed us to come up for air with a 4-3 victory and three precious points.
FT: Barnes 3-4 Kew