Sat 05
First Team
High Green Villa
S Dean (30'), D Beech (90' Sent Off)
Bankers play out frustrating stalemate

Bankers play out frustrating stalemate

By Matt Taylor
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Sheffield Bankers FC had to settle for a draw after hosting bottom of the league High Green Villa.

Looking to put last week’s defeat behind them, the team and manager Ryan Griffiths were quickly inspired by Club Chairman Mark Walker’s post match hair dryer treatment of the Over 35’s team, who had just finished their cup match. Manager Risho decided that the first team could use a bit of toughening up, which must be why he decided to fill the footballs up with cement, making it even harder to kick it in the 60mph winds brought by Storm Desmond. After a few moans from the players during the warm up that the footballs hurt their feet, the gaffer relented and let some air out of the match balls.

The first few minutes of the game saw both teams trying to suss out how to cope with the strong wind. Bankers quickly found a good formula, using the wind direction to good effect by playing balls towards the left hand corner for Sam Dean to run onto. Both Sam Dean and Daniel Beech had the better of High Green’s right back and the team found a lot of joy down that side in the first half.

Despite Bankers attacking intent, it was High Green Villa who took the lead in the game. A long cross field ball from their right hand side floated over Bankers’ defence and was met by High Green’s left winger just inside the area. A great first touch to bring it down set the player up with a one on one, and he was able to slide it past Keeper Scott Dinnigan. 0-1.

From this point on the game was more or less controlled by Sheffield Bankers. The midfield saw a lot of the ball, with Chris Tunstall in particular linking up well with Daniel Beech and the wingers. A couple of chances from the left side were created but High Green Villa managed to clear the chances away before a shot could get off. Bankers managed to pull a goal back around the half an hour mark. A well struck shot from 20 yards out by Chris Tunstall was matched by a decent save by High Green’s keeper; but Sam Dean followed the ball up well and converted the rebound into the net. 1-1.

Bankers continued to press but the half finished one a piece. Manager Ryan Griffiths gave his own version of the Wakka style team talk and sent the team on their way with clear instructions to press high and go win the game.

Bankers started the second half the same way they finished it, on the front foot. However, High Green Villa’s defence were being resolute and limited the team to half chances in the opening periods of the second half. Bankers did find an opening around 60 minutes in, where a cross field ball found Daniel Beech running into the area, to which he converted. However, the referee ruled it out for offside, much to the surprise of everyone around.

With around 25 minutes left, Jack Roe was brought on for James Nield-Smith, and Matt Taylor followed shortly after, replacing goal scorer Sam Dean. Bankers continued to press and had some chances to score. Daniel Beech had a couple of efforts from outside the area, Jack Roe played in a cross that was met by fellow sub Matt Taylor, but the ball was knocked out for a corner before he could get his shot away.

A lot of joy was coming down the channels, with the midfield trio of Mauro Pistis, Captain Mikey Russell and Chris Tunstall threading balls to the wingers time and time again. Bankers’ best chance to win the game came with a few minutes remaining. A pass from midfield saw the ball laid to Matt Taylor down the right hand side, who then chipped it in towards the head of Daniel Beech; with a good connection made, the ball looked goal bound, but instead it hit the underside of the cross bar and was cleared away. Agonisingly close.

As the game neared its end, High Green Villa took their time with all their set pieces, looking content to take the draw. Eventually the full time whistle came and the game finished 1-1. Bankers left extremely frustrated not to have won the match. A mark of the improvement made in recent weeks that the team leave the pitch disappointed despite not having lost the game.

Next Saturday, Bankers turn their attention to the County Cup, hosting Harworth Colliery Reserves.

Manager’s Man of the Match: “Super Mario” Mauro Pistis


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Match details

Match date

Sat 05, Dec 2015






Division One
Mauro Pistis

Star Player

Mauro Pistis