We entered 3 teams for the day, the Wildcats, the Tigers and the Lions, with teams lining-up for the most part as they will do when they play U9 league football next season. They were resplendent in their brand new Southside official kit, on show for the first time!
The Wildcats were managed by yours truly, with assistance from Simon, Brendan and Breandán. In our team we had sons Connor, George and Evan respectively, plus Jake S, Sam, Russell, Trey and Farid.
We started well in game 1 versus Hucclecote and came close to scoring when Jake hit the post, with Connor and Russell also going close soon after. We fell behind though to what proved to be Hucclecote’s only shot in the entire game, although to be fair, what a shot it was, as it whistled past Evan in goal into the far corner. Further chances came and went, but it was not to be, as we went down by a single goal.
In the 2nd game, the Wildcats faced the Quedgeley girls team, and were ahead within 30 seconds from a Russell strike. When Farid added the second within another minute, it seemed a heavy beating was on the cards for the girls, so we decided to play the remainder of the game with a player less. Nonetheless, we continued to score goals at a steady rate, with Trey, Connor and 2 more from Russell added to the tally, which was more than enough. The girls had been beaten 13-0 by Lakeside in the first game and I certainly didn’t want to see that scoreline repeated!
The 3rd game was a tough encounter versus Highnam, which could have gone either way. George, Trey and Jake were all on top form in defence, with Farid, Connor and Russell all having efforts on goal at the other end. Sam put us 1-0 up with a calm finish into the corner of the net, and we held on to that lead until the end, courtesy of a tremendous save when Evan came rushing out his of goal, made himself big and deflected a goal-bound shot for a corner.
In game 4, we came up against our old friends from Brockworth, who we played twice in friendlies last season, beating them comfortably both times. However, they have come on a bundle since that time and their team consisted of 2 giants, who seemed at least a foot taller than our boys; that size made all the difference, as this time it was Brockworth who were the comfortable winners.
The Wildcats faced Lakeside in their final game and of course, this was the one they really wanted to win. It was a tight game of few chances, but in the very final seconds of the game, Russell crossed from the right for Sam to tap home the winner surely, but the ball took an unfortunate bobble and came off Sam’s shin and over the bar. No matter, a creditable 0-0 draw.
Overall, an encouraging day for the Wildcats, who for the most part looked really solid. Player of the day went to Farid, who scored one and with a bit more luck could have had a couple more, and was a constant thorn in the side of the opposition defence.
The Tigers were managed by Adam, in his side he had son Seb, Oliver C, Filip, Kaiyan, Freddie, Jake M, Ned and Harry W.
I don’t have much details from their games, but in the first 2 games they were well-beaten. They recovered in game 3 to earn a draw with a nice goal from Kaiyan, then went down 2-1 in game 4, despite a goal from Filip. Lakeside was also the last game for the Tigers, and despite a battling performance, they fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat.
Not one of the better days for the Tigers then, but feedback was that they never gave up throughout. That spirit was embodied by Ned, who earned the man of the match plaudits for his never-say-die attitude.
The Lions were managed by Matt T, in his side he had son Brendan, Lennie, Reuben, Charlie, Noah, Finnley and Teddy. Something went wrong with the scheduling in this group, as the Lions ended-up playing just 4 games in a 6-team group; with 2 of those versus Lakeside and the other 2 versus Hucclecote! Not much detail here either I’m afraid, other than the 2 Lakeside games both ended in defeat. The first game versus Hucclecote saw a nice 3-0 win, with goals from Charlie, Lennie and Noah, although Hucclecote bounced back in the last game to nick a tight game 1-0.
I think ‘frustrating’ was probably the word of the day for the Lions, with a mixed performance to go with the mixed-up schedule. A rare off-day for them though, in what has been a very good season. Lennie was the Lions man of the day, with some good goalkeeping, solid defending and a goal to boot!
Overall then, a mixed bag of results, but now we have settled teams we can start to work more on getting players established into their positions, starting with another friendly at Prestbury this Saturday!
Men of the Match: Farid Ali Vargas, Ned Sherborn-Hoare & Lennie Middlecote