Month: September 2015
Both teams were buzzing to start their game today, boys were all showing their individual talents on both sides, unlucky for Merton the first goal took a deflection , the second however was made by great teamwork and a great pass from Thomas to Jamal to score over the top of the players into the top of the net to make 1-1. Oliver made a fantastic save pushing the ball over the top of the net.
The game was great end to end entertainment for us all supporting( great to see so many parents / carers watching) …. The game continued on, there was a strong shot at goal from Motspur Park which Oliver (GK) caught but struggled to keep it out therefore score went to 1-2 , so unlucky!
Then few minutes later we lost Possession of the ball and Motspur made a quick break and went on to score the third… The boys still kept their spirits high and came back with two shots hitting the post.
Game ended 1-3… Well done to Merton making one win and one loss.
Also we would like to thank the managers, Ref and ground staff for all their hard work!
Sunday morning at the Hood and what a cracking time. U13s beat Raynes Park Vale 3-2, U 10s lost 3-1 to a very strong Motspur Park side. U12s beat Twickenham Tigers 5-1 and U11s were leading 5-1 when i left . U 14s away in Whitton. A real tonic after yesterday Well done.
U14s lost at Whitton 5-2 (H-T 1-1)with a great battlin performance. They can build on this. Well done boys and Nick and thanks to the parents for their support.
1s lost 1-0 to Weirside Rangers, Defeat was a little unfortunate. Arturs saved a pen but they got to the rebound. We had our chances and shots but definitely not our day. But good performance.
Joe Griffin bags Man Most Handsome over Ben Cook in a closely fought contest. Just like the match, in fact, which Team Handsome lost 1-0 on a lovely, brave, sunny day…
The 3s go down 2-0 to Old Pauline in the AFA Cup – a close game of few chances
The 4s draw 3 -3 at home against Weirside Rangers
5s lost 4-1 (H-T 1-1) to the newly formed Ibis Eagles but lots of positives to take from the game.
Match reports have started to come in for latest games at the weekend. To view them go onto the team page, If the score is highlighted in blue, click on the score and this will link to the match report for that game. Please continue to write them and if possible along with match day photos and send them into Matt for the website at [email protected] and Ram for the newsletter at [email protected]
The first game of the 2015/16 season saw a new look 4th XI travel to Chiswick with Polytechnic 5s the hosts. Following last week’s performance, consistency in availability was vital. The only changes were John Gridley, Chris Dodd and Dan Plaistow coming in to replace Glen Porter (work), Ricardo Iglesias (3s) and Kevin Medina (5s).
With most players jumping up two leagues from last season, we knew that we were going to have a difficult time out on the field but we were buoyed by the great performance that everybody gave last week. If we managed to start how we left of last week then the hosts were in for a tough day.
We were on the back foot from the start, some sloppy passing along with players not tracking their runners allowed Poly to dominate possession. They had pace on each flank which they used to their advantage, with the majority of the time causing our full backs (one of them being me!) problems all game. We managed to keep them until ten minutes before the break. A corner from the left wasn’t cleared properly and following some pinball in the box the ball was blasted into the roof of the net. 1- 0 to the home side going into the break.
The team talk during the five minute break was one of many works with everyone chipping in with improvements that needed to be made. Changes were made; Aaron came back on to replace Chris Dodd and Arnold replaced Ryan. These changing didn’t really change much, neither did the team talk!
A sloppy free-kick was given away on the left ten minutes into the second period. More concerned about ensuring a tight line is kept, I allowed their number eleven an easy header that Sam could do nothing about. 2 – 0. We were being dominated at the point when the second goal was conceded and this allowed Poly to add to their tally. Sam did well to parry a shot following a break down the left only for their number 11 to bag his second by smashing the rebound into the bottom left. 3 – 0.
With just under thirty minutes left to go at the moment the third goal went in, we knew that there was still enough time to get back in the game. It was going to be tough but there was still a chance. With each and every one of us encouraging each other we were able to get into the game and dominate for fifteen minutes or so. During this time we reduced the deficit. Great hustling by Dan Plaistow on the right allowed Dom possession to free the ball to Dulanie on the left. A ground pass found Arnold, who under pressure, found the back of the net. A great team goal and I would say the best of the game. Not that I am biased!
We were putting more and more pressure on the opposition and pushing players up at every opportunity that we had. This backfired as they caught us on the counter to add another to their tally. 4-1 is how it finished.
Even though the score line doesn’t suggest it, Sam put in a Man of the Match performance between the sticks. Great distribution and playing the sweeper keeper role in a way that even Manuel Neuer would be proud of.
Obviously there are a number of things that we need to improve on however many positives to take from the second half performance. Next week we host Weirside Ranger at Joseph Hood where hopefully the end result is three points that will kick-start are season.
FINAL SCORE: Polytechnic 5s 4 – 1 Merton 4s SCORER: Arnold Collier MOTM: Sam Singer-Ripley
STARTING LINE-UP: Samuel Singer-Ripley (GK), John Gridley, Chris Outred, Joe Plumridge, Edward Plaistow, Ryan Burchell (Arnold Collier), Aaron Ackerman (Chris Dodd), Dan Gridley, Dulanie Richards, Dom Plumridge, Dan Plaistow.
With just two survivors from the team that lost 4-3 on the same ground last season, the new look Merton 3’s kicked off their season to the steady thrum of the North Circular at Crouch End. In a surprise turn of events, the referee for the day appeared to be Jeremy “Jez” Corbyn, which was very good of him considering he’d won the Labour leadership only a few hours beforehand.
Whilst a new team (of mostly old players), it was a case of history repeating itself as traffic issues meant that Merton only succeeded in reaching the requisite 11 players a few moments before kick-off. That said, this approach removed any selection dilemas, and the trusty 4-4-2 was called upon after some brief discussion, and accompanied by a hurried team talk, complete with all the standard advice any self-respecting football club should be covering. Having duly agreed to “keep it tight”, “take no risks in our defensive third” and “put fullbacks on the posts at corners”, Merton were ready to go.
On an uneven, bobbly, and narrow pitch the game took a while to come to life, but Merton eventually found their feet first and began to exert some sustained pressure on the Vampire’s goal. After a couple of wasteful set pieces, Merton took a deserved lead after 15 minutes; following some good work to win the ball back in midfield, the ball was passed in to Dan, who turned away from one defender, before shielding the ball from another. There didn’t look to be much danger at this point, but an on-rushing Darcy cleverly shouted for the ball, took it off Dan’s toes and left the covering defenders for dead who were still trying to work out where the ball had gone. Darcy drew the keeper and slotted in (slightly bobblingly) via the far post. 1-0.
Crouch End responded well with a spell of pressure of their own, forcing Artur into a couple of relatively comfortable saves, but having soaked this up Merton went straight back up the other end and added a second. This time, after some pinball in the opposition box, the maruading Tony at right-back ran on the ball from the corner of the 18 yard box and arrowed a shot goalwards. The keeper managed to save, but Darcy was on-hand again to hook the ball home from from a very narrow angle. The opposition appealed to Jez that the ball had already gone out of play, despite the impossibility of being able to score from behind the goal, but Jez was having none of it. 2-0.
Again, Crouch End responded, and on the brink of half time created their best move of the match, with a dipping 20 yard volley brilliantly tipped over the ball by Arturs. 2-0 at half time.
With a half time team talk that consisted of agreeing to do the same again, Merton started the second half brightly. In a collector’s item moment of creative flair, Dan played Nick in with a perfectly weighted through ball off the outside of his right foot (a proper Fifa R1 through-ball move) and we looked set for 3-0 as Nick bore down on the keeper. Everyone waited for the goal to come, but unfortunately as Nick also waited for the keeper to commit, a Crouch End defender made a stunning recovery tackle to steal the ball away just as Nick was about to strike.
This looked like it could be a pivotal moment, as Crouch End took advantage of this repreive to get themselves back in it. With Neil off for Riccardo, the midfield lost their shape and Crouch End began to dominate. The goal came via a penalty; the tricky Crouch End no. 10 drawing a foul inside the box, and the resulting penalty emphatically dispatched, not once, but twice after Jez spotted some frankly blatant encroaching by 4 or 5 players. Nothing got past this man.
2-1 quickly became 2-2, via another set piece. This time a free kick; curled around the wall and into the bottom corner from 20 yards. Crouch End sensed victory.
Almost of nowhere however, Merton rallied. Without a lead to protect any longer, Merton came back into the game somewhat, and it was Darcy this time that turned creator, running on to a channel ball towards the corner flag, and tricking his way past the covering defender on the by-line. He got his head up and picked out Denys at the back post for an easy tap-in. Crouch End screamed in vain for offside, but once again Jez was not to be swayed, even ruling out an offside Crouch End “equaliser” a few minutes later for good measure.
That proved to be the only further alarm though, as Merton successfully saw out the remainder of the game. “World-class” was even mentioned as Mike Reed expertly headed clear a long ball for the umpteenth time during this period.
So, three points a deserved reward for a gritty performance on a tough, narrow pitch. Darcy Yates was man of the match for his two goals and an assist, but special mention should also go to Arturs who made a couple of fantastic saves, and also the centre-back pairing of Mike Reed and John Stones who by and large dealt with everything thrown, kicked, or indeed hoofed their way.
Sunday Morning down at the Hood with the Youth section. And a cracking time!!. U10s beat Raynes Park Vale 6-3. U11s lost 7-2 to Doverhouse. U12s drew 2-2 with Shene Lions. U13s lost 4-3 to Moormead rather unluckily in great game. U14s lost heavily to Kew Park Rangers. With all Five teams at home it was quite an event. Well done to Steve and all the managers. All at home next Sunday so come on down and support the lads.
Today’s Results. Down at the Hood the 1s continued a disappointing start but came up against a very strong Old Parks side (as good as anything we’ve played for a while) losing 4-0. A goal either side of half time settled it (action pics). 6s lost 3-0 to Old Wilsonians in a game of two halves. We should have scored a couple in first half but their keeper made some outstanding saves (pic). 5s game called off by Carshalton who could not raise a team (Sorry lads) 3s had a great win at Crouch End 3-2 (Goal scorers and assists: Darcy 2 goals + 1 assist, Tony 1 assist, Dennis 1 goal) but 4s lost 4-1 at home to Poly 5s.
The 1s and 2s kicked off their first league games. 1s lost 3 – 0 away against EBOG, 2s beat Crouch End Vampires at home 3 – 1. The 4s and 5s played friendlies, 4s drew 3 – 3 against Old Salesians 2s a good result and the 5s lost 13 – 2 against a strong Old Wilsonian 5s.
Pedro, Alex, Will and Charlie prepare to make their Merton debuts for the 1s away at EBOG last Saturday. Confident. Question: is Ivan Gladkow stretching or taking a piss in the background? Bloody photo bomber!!!
Meet Merton’s dead lion day signings from the US: Alex and Will donned their cleats and delivered strong performances at de-fensive centre and wide offence wearing the famous yellow jersey for the 1s away at EBOG #franchiseenhancement #deadlionday #ripcecil
All teams except 2s play next weekend, please come down to the home ground and show your support where the 1s host Old Parkonians kicking off at 3pm and the 6s host Old Wilsonians 9s in the Junior Noverts Cup kiccking off at 1pm. Full fixtures can be seen on home page.
Merton Select 4s vs. Old Salesians 2s
Pre-Season Friendly Saturday 5th September 2015
The last pre-season friendly was upon us before the trip to Chiswick next weekend for our opening day fixture against Polytechnic. This meant one last chance to rectify any mistakes identified over the last few weeks. On paper, coming up against a reserve side was a little daunting however exciting at the same time. We knew that the visitors would be able to get the best out of us.
The squad was made up of those that are likely to represent the 4s for the upcoming season. Most of whom stepped up from the 5s from last season. We welcomed back Joe and Dom Plumridge after a season out and Ryan Burchell made a well-deserved step up from the 6s. Sam Ripley was between the sticks.
The opposition started brightly however it was short lived. The confidence that shone through each and every player in a yellow shirt was a blessing. There were no long ‘Hollywood’ balls, no panicking, just easy flowing football that I have not witness in a long time. Our style of play was rewarded with a goal from Dulanie 10 minutes in and a solid defensive display allowed us to go into the break with that score line intact.
Changes were made at the break with Chris dropping to partner Glen at centre half with Joe pushing up to midfield. Jack replaced Aaron and came on to play on the left flank. We way the second half panned out, these changes were a mistake on my behalf. Never change a back line unless you really need to!
Regardless of the changes, we started how we left of, dominating possession. This possession allowed us to double our advantage through Dom. The only thing that Old Salesians could resort to was the long ball however it payed off due to the high back line. They halved the deficit not long after our second and found an equaliser ten minutes later with an audacious effort having caught Sam off his line. Conceding in the manner we did had an effect on us, passes we starting to go astray and frustration was starting to show. We were now on the back foot and found ourselves behind with ten minutes to go.
With the ‘Never Say Die’ attitude that we have always played with, we were piling the pressure on and managed to find the equaliser with a couple of minutes to spare, Dom poking home into the bottom left.
If we take this performance into the season and keep the consistency then I see no reason why we can’t challenge for silverware. All we need is belief and to do it ‘The Merton Way’ and it will be a very successful season! FINAL SCORE: 3 – 3 MOTM: N/A
SQUAD: Samuel Singer-Ripley, Kevin Medina (Ricardo Iglesias), Joe Plumridge, Glen Porter, Edward Plaistow, Ryan Burchell (Arnold Collier), Dan Gridley, Aaron Ackerman (Jack Hamill), Chris Outred (C), Dom Plumridge, Dulanie Richards