Saturday 30th August 2008
By Sam Evans
This was exactly what you want from a pre season friendly. Played well, scored goals, improved fitness and avoided any serious injuries. Erith were poor, although probably not as bad as we made them look with some excellent passing and finishing. Our team was:
We scored after thirty seconds. Misplaced confidence in their own ability led Erith to pass the ball across their back four. The right back played it square in the general direction of the centre back I was able to nick the ball. I was clean through on goal and managed to beat the keeper. We had started the game at a ferocious pace in the same way as we did against the first team and we reaped the rewards; Erith looked shell shocked. They did however equalise when a cross from their right midfield area found their centre forward unmarked in the penalty area and he headed home.
It was 2-1 soon afterwards. Stuart Lenton played a great ball to me on the right wing and my cross evaded Bobby and Dan before Chris Charlton arrived at the far post to finish well. Chris scored his second goal before half time to make it 3-1. Picking the ball up midway inside their half he went on a mazy run across the pitch from left midfield, entering the box just to the right of the goal. He dribbled well and beat the keeper easily from 10 yards.
At half time Morad Afia came on at right back for Paul Tanton and Richard Tapsfield moved into right midfield. Steve Rogers came on into left midfield for Michael Seymour and Chris Charlton moved to left back. Unfortunately Steve Rogers got injured quickly after coming on but hopefully will not be away for too long. The first 20 minutes of the second half was probably our weakest spell of the game, we seemed to lose our rhythm somewhat after the interval. After the water break we improved again, and recommenced the triangular passing which had been so effective in the first half. We continued to create good chances, one in particular involved a flowing move down the right wing which involved five different players I think. It ended with me squaring to Bobby who was unfortunate not to score – Bobby deserved a goal after an excellent performance. Instead it was left to Chris Charlton to finish proceedings and claim a deserved hat trick. Erith were once again their own worst enemies in defence as Chris stole the ball from their centre back and beat the keeper easily.
All in all this was a great performance. We were committed from the first whistle and won the physical battle straight away. Having done this our quality then proved the difference between the two teams. We have got to start the season like this. If we do, there is no reason we can’t be pushing for promotion. Probably the worst moment today was an embarrassing ‘shot’ from myself which was of greater interest to Biggin Hill Air Traffic Control than their goalkeeper. Chris Charlton deserved to win man of the match for the second game running after an excellent performance. Chris has made the step up from the third team look easy and is sure to be an asset to us this season.
Match report: Sam Evans
Man of the match: Chris Charlton