Terrific game today in windy conditions with both sides trying to play the right way. There was a slightly unfamiliar look to the City side today but any hopes of weakness were soon dispelled by their excellent start to the game. They dominated the first 15 minutes and asked us lots of questions particularly from wide areas. As it was it took their goal to get us going (“wake us up” as Martin had it) and Leon, Olly and Nathan all had efforts well saved by the excellent Chattaway. Thus was set the pattern for much of the game with us pressing and City resisting but also offering threats on the break. The opening goal had been from the penalty spot (though Lee got a hand to it). We should have been level by half time given the chances we had but were confident if we persisted we’d get something.
The second half followed the same pattern although we played better: we were solid defensively led by Mark (one of many candidates for m-o-t-m), Nathan and Olly gave us lots of running and Christie once again dominated and Leon and Matt were lively up front. However the chances came and went: Nathan fired over and Chattaway saved from Christie; and City were still causing problems of their own: Lee made one great save and their striker ballooned one over when it looked easier to score! Of course in these circumstances you begin to think it’s one of those days and you’re destined not to meet the Kolumn’s prediction of a 2-1 away win.
And that would have been true save for a frantic last ten minutes and two free kicks from way out from centre back Chrissy Staien. The first was dropped into the box and produced a goalmouth scramble that left the ball at Christie’s feet and he cooly slotted it home (no more than we deserved but we were happy to get it). Then came one of those moments that keep the game interesting and ‘character-building’ . Chrissy lofted forward a (direct) free kick from inside our half, wind-assisted and Mark made a great run beyond their centre backs and across the keeper and at the last minute ducked out leaving their keeper (who’d been excellent) flat footed and unable to do anything about it! A satisfying result. Best wishes to City who continue to play the right way and in entirely the right spirit.