Sunday 10th March 2013
By Gary Rosslee
Young Vets take on Younger Vets and win
So on this cold Mothering Sunday in leafy Farnborough Village the Young Vets played host to Charlton Rangers who unlike last week\'s opposition were all present and correct and at Farrow Fields in a very timely fashion. Today also saw the long awaited return of Jason Miller to the squad who must have been oblivious about the club\'s decision to make us play on the smaller, bumpier and completely sodden top pitch however after some excellent grovelling erm…… I mean negotiation work by several first team players the club\'s “powers that be” saw fit to allow us to play on the main pitch and allow Jason Miller the chance to get kitted up and make his first outing for the Guild since the 9th of December. As it was the pitch was in such good nick it played really well and hardly cut up at all as it was first feared (a testament to the hardworking ground staff).
What became apparent as we lined up against ‘Charlton Rangers’ was the irony that we should be facing a team on Mothers\' day where some of their players could have been young enough to be our sons perhaps this fixture could be moved to mid June in order to celebrate ‘Fathers\' day’ in the future!
However in true keeping and to celebrate ‘Mothering Sunday’ the Farnborough Mums club lined up as follows:
GK, Gary Rosslee (Keeping mum)
RB, Richard Davies (Mothers ruin)
CB, Andy Cobham (Grandmother)
CB, Paul Bailey (Godmother)
LB, Danny Saines (Motherboard)
LM, Matt Wright (Mother knows best)
CM, Dean Wyatt (Big Mama)
CM, Danny Clark (Mothercare)
RM, Paul Tanton (Mother of the bride)
CF, Simon Davies (Mother of all f*ck ups)
CF, Barry Grainger (Mamma Mia)
Jason Miller (Mother in Law)
Simon Reynolds (Brumbies Mummy)
Neil Connelly (Mother of God)
Daragh Nott (Mother Earth)
Charlton’s tactics were pretty much unchanged from their previous encounter at Farrow Fields and that was to get the ball up as quickly and often as possible to their towering number 17 who for a big bloke had very good feet, and this was definitely a morning that the centre back duo of Andy Cobham and Paul Bailey would have their work cut out. In the earlier exchanges Farnborough kept the away team at bay and disrupted their passage of play and broke up any momentum that Rangers were looking to build on. The first real chance of the match fell to the Guild and with top scorer Jim St John absent there was a real chance for the other two chasing him in the scoring charts to catch him up. However Simon Davies (14 for the season) was unable to trouble the Rangers goalkeeper as his first time volley was pulled wide across the goal to let the away team off when he had a lot more time than he realised.
Barry Grainger (11 goals for the season) was then unlucky not to break the deadlock after his clever play allowed him to draw the Rangers goalkeeper from his line but his angled lob shot whistled just over the bar. Paul Tanton then had an opportunity to score in consecutive games for the first time since September of last year but his effort just lacked the precision and power to beat the goalkeeper. The Farnborough defence was standing strong and not allowing Charlton Rangers to get a grip on the match and even with a forced change of personnel at left back (Neil Connelly for Danny Saines) Farnborough looked the more potent and direct team and again should have taken the lead but this time Simon Davies failed to convert a one on one chance. It was just like déjà vu against Inter Vyagra last week where we had chance after chance after chance; Barry Grainger tried an audacious first time shot at the goalkeeper’s near side post that he did well not to get caught out to make a smart save to turn the ball away for a corner.
The play of the match was undoubtedly a four man pass that deserved a goal just for the sure brilliance. Rosslee released the ball early to Connelly who then played it with precision down the channel for Matt Wright to chase and run on and within his stride he delivered an pin pint cross that Simon Davies met first time with a half volley only to see it cannon off the cross bar and go over. Rangers had a couple of half chances themselves and on another day Paul Bailey may have seen a red card as he was adjudged to have hauled the number 17 down when he was through on goal. However it would have been a bit harsh in a match deemed as a friendly. Rosslee then did well to be alert to an awkward shot low done to his right to keep the scores level at half time.
Half time saw the inclusion of fresh legs in Jason Miller for Paul Tanton and Simon Reynolds for Danny Clark and they finally went one nil up courtesy of a well weighted through ball by the half time sub Simon Reynolds which allowed Barry Grainger to run on to and deftly lob the keeper first time with a nonchalant finish with the outside of this trusty left boot, 1-0 OBG’s.
Just when it seemed that Farnborough were going to weather the second half onslaught as they played into the gusty winds Charlton got a huge slice of luck with an equaliser. Not for the first time this season the Guild fell asleep at a throw in close to their own penalty area and the ball was thrown over the head of Neil Connelly and brought down by the number 17. It then appeared that Paul Bailey had done enough to shepherd his man however he managed to get a cross into the box that took the slightest of deflections off Baileys tackling foot which diverted the ball back goal wards and over the despairing attempt of a save by Rosslee, 1-1.
With Charlton probing the Farnborough defence but without any real penetration due to the excellent battle between Paul Bailey and the Charlton number 17 with the former coming off best as Farnborough took the lead for a second time in the match. It was Barry Grainger on hand again to take his season tally to 13, and once more with a well taken goal using the outside of his left foot. The Charlton defence stood still hoping for an offside decision that never came and Barry duly did the rest with another exquisite finish this time finding the goalkeepers far post and going in. That was ultimately Barry’s last contribution to the match as he was replaced by Simon Davies up front, 2-1 OBG’s.
With 5 minutes left on the referee’s timepiece a goalmouth scramble then ensued in the Farnborough penalty box that saw Rosslee, Richard Davies and ultimately Daragh Nott (on at right back) make at least four important last ditch blocks between them to somehow keep the scores at 2-1. With that kind of guile and determination on display Farnborough must have felt certain that their hard work against a younger and fitter team would pay off today. Alas that was not to be the case as Richard Davies gave the ball away in the final third which allowed the Charlton players to press forward and pack the penalty box once again and equalise albeit again with some fortuitous luck as the attacker appeared to control the ball with his arm before guiding the ball into the net beyond several players on the line, 2-2 and surely full time.
What happened next still had the onlookers blinking with disbelief as the Charlton left back completely misjudged an over hit pass and allowed Simon Davies to race on to and carry into the box completely unchallenged. Thankfully he had the presence of mind to look up and square to Danny Clark who had raced into the box unmarked and he applied the finishing touch to restore the Farnborough lead with literally the last kick of the game, 3-2 OBG’s.
The two teams showed their appreciation to each other for the effort they had both put in and congratulated each other for a game played in good spirits.
Next week we are at home to Crofton Albion and we go into this match still unbeaten at home this season and still unbeaten in 2013.
Shot of the match: Hard to split either of Barry Grainger’s well taken goals but I think the second goal just edged it.
Save of the match: Daragh Nott’s clearance ion the goal mouth scramble
Man of the match: Paul Bailey with 10 votes for a defending master class
Moan of the match: only 7 seven days ago we all agreed that against better opposition we would have been punished for the amount of chances that went begging and today we were so nearly punished by a team of 10 men/boys! Yet again we should have had this match completely wrapped up by half time and maybe the second half would not have been such a ding dong end to end battle.
Man of the match: Paul Bailey