We had one of those days today when everything conspired against us, everything that is apart from the football, (good game on a muddy pitch with Sheldon the better side and us giving a good account of ourselves). Before this though our pre-match plans had literally fallen apart, losing three from the matchday squad on the morning of the game and Ben lost in transit (though Mike and I also had problems, Ben, in fact never arrived). Add to this Olly ‘getting there when he could’ and we’re started with ten men and without a proper warm up against one of the best teams in the league.
In fact the ten men, who included Stew Harvey just back from injury (he did magnificently), did well but looking back this twenty or so minutes also took its toll. Ironically when Olly arrived to even things up, we immediately conceded (it’s a funny old game!) Sheldon at this point had most of the play as we struggled to get going but not through lack of effort: all eleven deserved credit today. On a small pitch Hunter’s throw-ins were particularly dangerous and from one of these Dave Scott bundled in an equalizer. At half time we knew we were still very much in it but also that the absence of any replacements with a tiring team might prove vital.
Sheldon were quickly at their work in the second half and we were progressively pushed back. Christie and Hunter were busy up top and Lance put in a mighty shift supporting them while defensively we were offering plenty of resistance but were undone by a sharp move that set their striker up for 2-1. Then came the only really disappointing aspect of our performance as they scored a decisive goal from a poorly delivered front post corner. At 3-1 the game was effectively settled but it’s hard at this level to accept this, even as we were tiring and with no subs. Mark tried to have a go and we did offer a threat and missed a number of opportunities. However they also added two more to make the score a little lop-sided. Good luck to Lyndon and his lads!
Lee also made one excellent fingertip save from their number 9: a shot that was destined for the top corner.