After the long drive to Bromley, Merton 7s were ready to face Old Wilsonians 8th‘s. Having faced them 3 weeks previously in which they fielded some notably better players, Merton were expecting another difficult game. With some regulars missing; Dave, Malcolm and Josh. The 7s, much like all political parties currently, had scrambled around to get players. In what turned out to be a very balanced squad. Lining up in the classic 442 the game got under way with Merton seemingly under the cosh early on. OW8 were dominating the first 10 minutes, with Merton not settling into the game. OW8 pounced and scored from a break. 1-0 down. After this, the 7s found their heads and took hold of the game for the rest of the half. With Chris and JT dovetailing beautifully in midfield to control the game. Spreading out wide to the two full backs of Dan P and Ed to create opportunities with both Jon Taylor and Scott profiting from this control. Jon Taylor’s tireless running allowing him to go through one-one with the keeper, who managed to save from point blank range. With the 7s in control, the pressure finally led to a breakthrough with Chris playing a cross-come-shot from the left-hand side outside the box. The ball floated its way past the keeper and into the top corner. 1-1! He definitely meant that! With all to play for the 7s were enjoying the game with nice interplay, but they were soon halted when they lost the dynamic and powerful Adam E. Who went off after hurting his shoulder as he tried to cushion his fall to the ground after being slide tackled. However, with Pete coming on in his place the 7s looked better for it! With Pete slotting in and dominating the flank with his hold-up play and running. Before the break there was one final incident when Scott had pressed the OW8 CM causing him to loose the ball, this lead to him kicking out at Scott. Infuriated by this Dobson went to Scott’s defence and shouted down the “Fat James Bay” (in his words). The CM was shown only a yellow card for this! As the referee deemed his frustrations to be with him not the team and so was only a yellow – very strange. No changes were made at half-time, with the team looking stable and the only thing asked was more of the same. However OW8 seemed to dominate for the first 10 minutes yet again, and like before they were able to get a goal during this little period of dominance. The striker smashing the ball from inside the box on the left hand side, past Martin’s near post side. Soon after this, Jon Taylor was replaced by Adam E who recovered from his shoulder injury. Dan P at RB was straight swapped for Scott at ST. Whilst Pete was moved from RM to ST alongside him. Adam E coming back to RM. The 7s then dominated for the rest of the game with the midfield two again dominating over OW8, however with all the dominance the 7s couldn’t make any headway. That was until 3 minutes from normal time. Dan P collected a long ball on the left channel, spinning past his marker he sent through Pete clean through. Pete then rounded the keeper and slotted home for 2-2!
Starting XI: Martin (GK), Dan P, Dan (C), Steve B, Ed P, Adam E, Chris O, JT, Dobson, Jon Taylor and Scott Subs: Pete
MOM: Dan P for his excellent play at RB in the first-half, before seamlessly switching to ST and setting up the equaliser in the dying moments of the game.
DOTD: OWE CM aka “The Fat James Bay” for his constant moaning and shouting at the ref and then kicking out at Scott