Redhill & District League Division One – Saturday 15th October 2011
Warlingham “A” 7 Westcott 35 1
With the 1st and Reserve teams both away your reporter had the opportunity to see how the “A” team were getting on. They have had a good start with 3 good wins and a defeat and stood 2nd in the league at the beginning of the day.
The management team of Ashburn and Courtman have been getting to know the players and clearly beginning to build a team who are in it together. Football is obviously a team game and that aspect is key to success. Stability is therefore important and this is not easy for an “A” team with frequent movement between the teams.
The team that took the field had a strong look about it with a good mix of committed club players and new players who have joined us this year.
Within 50 seconds of the start young Dunge had managed to give away a penalty and we were one nil down! A softer penalty I don’t think I have seen and made worse because the referee also booked our keeper. This referee in my opinion is one of the better referee’s at this level he is consistent and fair and manages to keep up with play well. Unfortunately today was not one of his better days.
Despite this very early set back Wars were quickly into their stride and it looked like the early setback would be reversed very quickly. First to show was Manning with a header from a corner then Jarrett went past the left back, for what was to become a recurring theme during the first half, and crossed and MacDiarmid headed wide when perhaps he should have done better.
The pressure was beginning to build and after 12 minutes Wars were back on even terms. McIntyre did well with his tireless running down the left and brought the ball back in field for Brady to despatch with power from 25 yards.
And so it went on. Manning sent a corner right across goal just 2 minutes later with nobody able to make contact. MacDiarmid again had a glancing header just past from another corner.
Jarrett was having a field day down the Wars right and the left back was removed half way through the first half suffering from “twisted blood”. His replacement didn’t do a lot better. Jarrett got himself on the score sheet after 19 minutes as he bundled in a Manning shot to put Wars 2-1 up and looking in control.
Wars were playing some excellent football knocking it around the increasingly frustrated Westcott players with consummate ease. Brady and McIntyre were commanding in the centre of midfield. Jarrett and Ellis were destroying their respective full back with the skill and pace with MacDiarmid and Manning looking threatening up front.
Playing 3 at the back is always a risk but when it is marshalled by the excellent Vidal (K) that risk is considerably reduced. Jones battled hard against the 6’10” centre forward and gradually got the measure of him which had an important impact on the game because he was the only Westcott threat and they looked to him with every ball.
Tomlinson and Rowe were also in excellent form and Rowe in particular would have an increasing influence on the game.
Jarrett burst down the right after 24 minutes and his cross cannoned off the upright and away. Just a minute later and Brady threaded a ball through to Manning who was pushed in the back and the referee pointed to the spot – the second of two soft penalties but that didn’t stop Manning stepping up and putting wars 3-1 up.
Before half time both Manning and MacDiarmid had chances to increase the score but both blasted high and wide. It was not without the occasional scare at the other end and Westcott managed to hit the post as the half drew to a close.
Wars came out in equally determined mood in the 2nd half and Brady put MacDiarmid through on 48 minutes but the ball ended up running through to the keeper. Wars weren’t denied long and 53 minutes in and Ellis burst through the middle and with some composure beat the keeper and put Wars in front 4-1.
Coveley had come on to make his debut at half time to replace Manning. He was quickly into the action and was fouled after 55 minutes and again the referee pointed to the spot. Tomlinson stepped up and the keeper made a good save but Tomlinson was not to be denied as he hit the roof of the net with a thundering response to the rebound. Wars 5-1 up. Tomlinson was immediately replaced by Fox as the Management team sought to get all the squad involved.
The quality of football Wars were producing just got better and better and Westcott were looking increasingly demoralised. On 66 minutes Rowe took a throw in which put MacDiarmid right through and this time he made no mistake as he took his chance with the aplomb we have come to expect from a serial goal scorer. Wars 6-1 up.
The chances just kept coming. First Milsom on for Jarrett sped down the right and hit a beautiful cross which MacDiarmid should have done better with. Then Ellis set up Foxy who managed to put the chance wide. 82 minutes and Ellis hits the post having been set through by MacDiarmid.
To round things off Ellis got his 2nd after MacDiarmid was upended in the box and the ball made its way to him to finish to round off a crushing 7-1 victory and put Wars back on top of the division.
The only disappointment on the day was the 3 bookings and no doubt if I hadn’t seen them for myself I would not have been happy as we try and improve our discipline so we can apply for Charter Standard. However, these bookings were embarrassingly soft. The bookings for Brady and Coveley would not even have been fouls when I played let alone bookings. Neither was dangerous and both won the ball cleanly. There was no protest from the Westcott players and I do wonder what referee’s are being told by the FA. It is rapidly becoming a no contact sport and I have to wonder if that is a good thing for our game!
Team: Dungey, Rowe, Vidal (K), Jones (R), Brady, McIntyre, Jarrett, Ellis, Tomlinson, MacDiarmid, Manning Subs all used: Milsom, Fox, Coveley
MOM: There was some exhilarating football today all around the pitch. Ellis was excellent scoring 2 goals. Jarrett destroyed his full back and presented cross after cross. Rowe was everywhere using his touch and pace to great affect. Jones tamed the giant up front for Westcott and removed their primary threat. Brady gelled well in the middle and dominated all around them. MacDiarmid and Manning were always a threat up front and Westcott had few answers to their pace and movement.
All of this was build around an outstanding performance from Kevin Vidal. Control, composure, timing and reading of the game were quality. A top class performance and it gave me great pleasure to tell him so afterwards.