Saturday 14th March 2009
By Sam Evans
This was far from an advert for the beautiful game. The pitch was dreadful and there was a 15 minute spell at the start of the second half which surely must rank as one of the worst passages of play any of us have ever been involved in. On the bright side we did play some decent stuff in places and most importantly we took the 3 points. Also no-one can ever complain about the Farnborough showers again as the showers at the Co-op ground were so cold they literally took my breath away. Our team was:
Evans (CF) (Captain)
We started brightly and should have been 1-0 up inside 5 minutes. Chris got away down the left and squared a perfect ball to me on the edge of the 6 yard box. Somehow I contrived to put it over the bar. Maybe it is something about this ground as we missed a few sitters here last time as well. Anyway we deservedly took the lead 15 minutes later. Stu had the ball in the box with his back to goal and he shielded it well before laying it off to me. I closed my eyes, swung my right leg and was surprised to see the ball fly towards the far corner - it went in off the post.
We had other good chances in the first half too. Chris continued to make good runs into the channel and delivered great balls into the box – once from the right and once from the left – which unfortunately nobody got on the end of. Dan also found himself clean through but the keeper made a good save. At the other end Chislehurst failed to create any chances. This was partly a reflection on them but our defence should also be praised. The whole of the back 4 played excellently and consistently broke down Chislehurst’s attacks. This left George with very little to do in goal, but once again he did what he needed to do very well.
It was only 1-0 at half time and we were keen to get the second to avoid a nervous end to the game. Taps came close to doing so when we managed to switch the ball from left to right – something we should have done more of – and he struck a powerful shot towards the bottom left hand corner, unfortunately it hit the post and went wide. With 25 minutes to go Danny made some substitutions – Russ for me and Carps for Lee and Russ scored soon afterwards. Taps played him in down the right and as Chislehurst’s defence tired he found himself in space. Russ struck a powerful shot and beat the keeper at the near post. This was a great goal and all that time meditating on the sun bed has clearly paid off. We really started to relax after this and continued to apply pressure, although we didn’t create any clear cut chances. We were also treated to an impressive display of kicks, tricks and flicks from Carps on the right wing although to be fair some of these were more effective than others.
So all in all this was a good 3 points although we made hard work of it. The main positive point is that we were completely in control and seeing as we have lost Johnny and Gio who had been starting every game it shows how much strength in depth we have got. On the other hand we won’t have the luxury of so many chances against better opposition and we need to make sure that we are more clinical in front of goal. Stu deservedly won man of the match by several votes. On a small, bobbly pitch, Stu managed to inject quality into proceedings and was at the heart of most of our good passing moves. Next week is Seven Acre at home which is obviously massive if you look at the league table. We need to make sure we take our chances when they come and if we do then we have a great chance of winning a vital game.
Man of the match: Stuart Lenton