Saturday 12th May 2007
By Shaun Keddle
A poor way to end the season due to lack of organisation and motivation.
Seven Acre Sports is a nightmare to get to. We arrived at the venue late and had a number of players letting me down at the last minute through lack of communication or just not turning up at all. That’s a shocking attitude and disrespectful to myself, the team and the club. After a hasty and disorganised approach to the game we played in a really ‘cannot be bothered’ fashion. We lost umpteen headers in our own box, despite having a team of giants making up the back four. We were really lucky not to concede and it was lucky that Bexleians could not finish. Our passing and application of the basic principles of football were shocking. No disrespect to Bexleians, but their league position indicates that we should be looking to have this game won in the first half and we should be counting up the goals.
The first half was woeful and a battling Bexleians side were unlucky not to come into the break at least a goal to the good. The second half was an improvement, but not by much. The Bexleians keeper had a very good half which proved we worked him more, but we were never in full control of the game. Cleaver replaced the injured Harrigan and really looked lively up front, chasing and harrying everything and nearly scored twice. With around 10 minutes left, Pragnell was fouled in the box after a pointless challenge from a Bexleians defender and we were handed a golden opportunity to take the lead from the spot kick. Judgey stepped up and fooled the keeper sending him the wrong way. However, he also fooled himself and his entire team as the ball missed the goal, the clubhouse, the venue and was half way to Woolwich. With only a couple of minutes left on the clock Perkins burst through and finished spectacularly over the keeper for a really good goal. The only decent piece of play from the only decent player on the park. We had got out of jail and Bexleians will feel that could have got something out of the game.
Looking back, winning the cup is probably the worst thing that we did as it appeared to signal the end of the season for everyone despite having another two fixtures to play. I know it’s been a long season, but it’s only the last two weeks that have been hard. I did everyone a favour resting you before the final and that favour has not been returned. As a response to this, I have requested that the first team is withdrawn from the Kent Cup next season. If we had not won the Sevenoaks Cup (so we have a right to defend it) I would have requested that the reserves enter into our section instead of us. The reason for this is that we did not focus on the league professionally enough and as a result players had one eye on the final before we played it and lost focus after we won it. Good teams are judged by league positions not cup runs. I would sooner be a good team than a good cup team. Cup runs are good achievements and fantastic days out, but the cup only masks our poor performance in the league. We need greater focus on the nitty gritty of the league. We all talk about going up and getting promoted but in football, action speaks louder than words and this season our availability has not been good enough (again) and our attitude towards training was p*ss poor. Its easy to stand in a pub with pints in hand saying that we are going to get promoted, but talk is cheap and we need to apply ourselves and our attitude correctly if we are going to achieve anything in the league. Winning the league involves turning up to training on time and ready to give 100%. Winning the league involves committing for the season. Winning the league means prioritising football. Winning the league involves turning up on-time ready to give 100% in games. Train hard, play harder.
A sad way to end the season. Pre-season training starts on Saturday 30th June. However, there will be a squad meeting on Wednesday 27th June, 8pm at the club house for all players with any aspirations of playing first team football. Please ensure that all involved parties attend.