Wolverhampton and Perton 1 Rowley College 4

12th December

Another epic encounter with Wolves & Perton today which produced in difficult conditions a quality game with two teams intent on playing football. The score line did not reflect the closeness of the game: when they scored at 0-3 they were sure they could recover something from the game and we had to be very much on our mettle. However, paradoxically, while 1-4 was hard on W&P, it did not flatter us: we scored four good goals and might have had four more at least!

Thanks are due firstly to Jon Nelson who allowed the game to go ahead on a heavy pitch and then did his best to let the game flow. Still lacking Olly and with Stanton only fit enough for the bench, we pushed Clive into midfield and Fowler into the centre. This was technically 4-1-4-1 but functioned much more fluidly with Christy the fulcrum of a powerful attacking machine. When W&P started much the brighter, it was Christy who powered past their centre back and slotted us in front as part of a man-of the-match performance: his hold up play was excellent.

This was, however, most importantly a team effort from Lee in goal through two cracking full backs, Chris and Matt Williams (who ended with what looked like a wig of mud: think Action man with Eagle-eyes™ circa 1977), Tom and Clive wide, South and Ben central and Benna supporting Christy (and Matt and Sammy as subs). We are presently a difficult side to break down AND a side with goals (a decent combination). First half saw close efforts from Benna, Mark and Joe but also two more goals. Firstly a throw from the left was dummied by South to put in Benna who stroked it home. Then the McKenzie- Fowler forward combination linked for Chisty to set up Benna for his second.

The half time chat at 0-3 was upbeat but wary. It is a measure of their threat that we did not feel secure. We expected a reaction and got it but from both sides and we were still having the better chances on an increasingly muddy pitch. Christy was particularly frustrated when he fluffed his lines after Benna set him up in a flowing counter attack. Meanwhile our defence was heroic until one of their lads cracked in a beauty from outside the box . For ten minutes we were under siege and they were close on a couple of occasions. Then Clive, who was so upset last week by his red card, made amends by exchanging passes and then outpacing and outfoxing their back line and slotting in. Even then there was time for the busy Sammy to volley just over. W&P kept going until the very end: all the best to Adam and his lads. Happy Christmas from me: I’m off to Lapland with my family so won’t be around next Saturday.

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