Merton 3s vs Polytechnic 5s
The Boars returned to the hood against the team currently top of the league. Another much changed squad was depleted further by late withdrawals of Joe Vaughan for work related reasons and Adam Lynch whose better half disobeyed strict instructions and gave birth to their daughter, a massive congrats from all at the club. A positive was the return to fold of Dan Kelly who after his world tour.
Due to the multiple ins and outs most players were asked to play out of position.
The game kicked off and it didn’t take long for the visitors to take the lead, the ball was lost in central midfield and the ball was played through for the Polytechnic forward to side foot the ball past an exposed keeper, 0-1. After that early shock to the system the boars started to gain a foothold in the game, moving the ball around well and creating a couple of chances but not testing the keeper.
But all the good work was undone by a second goal for the away team, after breaking free down the right wing the ball was delivered to the back post where the opposition player headed home, 0-2. It then got worse as shortly after Polytechnic scored a third after failing to clear a corner the ball was worked back into the box where the opposition player rounded the keeper and slotted the ball into the in guarded net, 0-3 at half time.
The boars retook the field after lengthy team talk, just the one change was made, Fitz took up residence between the sticks and Iain was called into action outfield with Dan Kelly making way.
But the positive start to the half Merton were looking for didn’t materialise and from a direct free kick on the edge of the box Polytechnic scored a forth and really ended the game as a contest.
The one bright note was the performance of San Peace over the 90 minutes and that performance was rewarded with his second goal in as many game. It was a great finish from a good 25 yards out that caught the keeper unawares, 1-4.
The scoring was completed when more space down the Merton left was exploited by the Polytechnic right midfielder, the ball across the six yard box was stuck away, 1-5.
MoM – Dan Peace
DoD- Iain Evans
A bad result but no time to feel sorry for ourselves as the small matter of a local derby against Carshalton coming up, a must win in every sense.
Bank of England 5s v Merton 6s
Bank of England, must be one of the best locations to play a game of football on a Saturday at any level. No matter which pitch your allocated, the groundsman does a remarkable job, as well as the free half time oranges and post-match hospitality, yes, BoE is a fixture you look forward to
With numbers low compared to the previous week, a thread bear team rocks up at the BoE for a testing game against a team that is unbeaten in the league, but was turning over in the cup to a heavy defeat the week before, maybe this was a good time (or not) to be taking the boys in (dark) blue on
The 6s turned up in dribs and drabs due to the local road works, with the final player managing to get to the pitch with 10 minutes to go. MQ, as ever, ready for his favourite roll between the sticks, the back 4 this week see Steve B at left back, Scott stepping up at short notice to the right back roll, Mark Chappell answering the call at less than 24 hours’ notice at centre back, paired with Joe D and his glass foot, wheeled in from the treatment room to complete the back 4.
Midfield welcomes the new signing of james E, the young left winger/forward also being thrown in to his first game at short notice, right wing sees Daban retain his place ahead of Andrew who starts on the bench and making up the centre pairing is the Phil T and DG, who drops back into last season roll (needs must!), this leaves the newly signed 6s striker, Lewis, up front with the retuning BG, recalled at an hours’ notice to make up the numbers
Looking towards the oppo, the team looks strong and unaffected at the loss in the cup last week to a team no less than 7 divisions or so above ours, looking unfazed they kick off and retain the early possession. A few probing balls over the top to their ‘big man’ up front is dealt with by the 6s centre backs, making light work of the early attacks and looking very composed, good communication between the defence and midfield close the gaps and contain the BoE5s game plan
With the 6s first real attack, BoE realise that 6s have a formidable attack with no less than 4 players that have more pace than your average gazelle in the south London wilderness! Lewis, being marked by Hagrid’s smaller 9ft brother, will never beat him in the air, but in a foot race… see ya pal!
However, its BoE5s who get the lucky break, from what looked like a tame attack came a weak penalty, MC marking the striker close. reaches in and catches the players shin, the contact was far more audible than the tackle, with the player not even going over, the ref points to the spot, the pen is dispatched and MQ dives the right way, but the ball is just out of reach for 1-0
Down against the run of play, the remaining of the half is mainly the 6s, with the odd BoE5s attack thrown in, Phil and DG boss the midfield and win almost every Ariel attack, the 2 working well together with DG ‘breaking’ up play (or just bulldozing the oppo off the ball) and PT skipping around the challenges, its only bad luck and poor finishing form the front that keeps the score 1-0 at have time
2nd sees Dobby comes in for the injury Daban who took a nasty knock to the foot, and Ricky replacing Scott at right back, the 6s restart the game as they finished the 1st. Although BoE are more composed and looking more effective its 6s who gain the early exchanges and now test the keeper. The formation changes from 4-4-2, to a 4-3-3 with James tucking in with Lewis and BG, and dobby slotting beside PT and DG.
The phenomenal pace of the front 3 are just one pass away from being great, countless times the BoE are made to look static as each player slips in behind, but can’t quite make the final ball count, and once again, against the run of play, BoE make a set play count when there 9ft defender ambles forward and gets on the end of a corner to plant a soft header above Ricky on the far post and into the top corner for a undeserved 2-0 lead
With 15 minutes to go and 2-0 down against the run of play, the 6s step it up a notch, midfield retain possession from BoE and the counter is on, BG steps on the after burners leaving a few in his wake, delivers a cross, Lewis who is also a MAC1 arrives in the box to firmly side foot his shot into the bottom corner for 2-1 and less than 10 minutes to go
BoE have their backs against the wall, 6s are now stringing the passes around and its not long before the pressure pays off, again the midfield win the battle, PT goes on a mazy run, a couple of 1-2s out wide and the ball is threaded inwards to DG, with one touch, fires in a solid pass to Lewis, with back to goal, flicks the ball between the 2 defenders and into the path of the advancing James, with composure takes a calming touch, waits for the keeper to commit and slots the ball home for a debut goal which brings the game level at 2-2
On top and probing, the 6s pass and move is tearing the oppo apart, PT and DG, again in the thick of it, are instrumental in the build up to another fine move, once again the front 3 terrorise the BoE and it would seem the winner is beckoning. Some quick passing sets James free inside the box, selling his man a one ticket and only the keeper to beat, find himself pushed wide and on the weaker peg, this results in the keeper winning this battle and keeping the score at 2-2, but ‘o’ so close…
With the final minutes beckoning, it’s a BoE attack which looks like nicking the game, 6s pressing for the winner are caught out as BoE go 3v2 at the back, a goal mouth scrabble and a few lucky moments sees the ball go for another corner, the 9ft’er steps up but the ball is hit short, the clearance now put 6s on an 2v2 attack, BG breaks away and threads Lewis through only for the ref to blow the whistle, no way could he be off side as he was still in his own half, bemused and ready to protest, its only them realised the game has been brought to a close for full time… finishing 2-2.
Great game and by far the best the 6s have performed, even with a make shift team. Bank played their part, and will no doubt be pushing towards the top as they do play some neat, tidy football and on any other day would have rolled the 6s over, just that today it finally clicked for the boys in yellow and although down, but not out, was unluckily not to nick it at the death.
No game next week due to the Merton Vets game, where no less than 6 players from the 6s will take part in some way, shape or form, we return the following week in the AFA cup, against last year’s runners up!
MOTM: Close call as it was great team performance, Mark C, Phil T having strong games but getting booked in the process, Steve b also just missing out to the final winner, Lewis, great to have him back in the fold, and 4 goals in 2 games is joint top score for the 6s with DG
DOTD: Mark C. Gave away a pen and got booked for an ‘amazing’ last ditch tackle which not only up ended the player but managed to spin the poor chap 360* mid-air…! (apart from that, he had a great game)
Merton Under 10s vs Old Coulsdon Colts (Friendly)
25th – November 2018 – Under 10s report
There were clouds above and the sky was overcast. Today’s match was a friendly against Old Coulsdon Colts who managed to confuse everyone before kick off by arriving in the same yellow and black jackets that Merton wear. Top marks for originality, no other team have done that before.
The first half started with Merton playing from right to left. The early exchanges were fairly even; both sides were giving away the ball fairly cheaply and putting themselves under pressure. Was this Colts’ game plan? Press Merton and force them into mistakes. After 4 minutes, the ball was given away by Merton a few yards outside of their own penalty area. This was a golden invitation for Colts to attack Merton’s goal and they did. Their striker fired a shot into the top left corner of Merton’s goal. Max was unable to save it.
1 nil to Colts
Play continued to be quite disjointed and the pitch was definitely a factor. If this was a horse race, the going would be described as Good to Soft. At times, Merton did try to stick to their free-flowing pass and move style of football. They were able to create some chances.
Percy had a shot that went wide after 9 minutes.
Play was halted temporarily after a couple of canine pitch invaders literally ran circles around players from both teams before one of them marked his territory in the Colts goal. Enough said. Then their owner sheepishly called them off the pitch allowing the game to re-commence. Possession was still being turned over which made for an entertaining game for the neutral. After some good approach work, Faris had a shot blocked.
With 12 minutes gone, Harry, who was having an outstanding game, made three successive good tackles in the space of 1 minute. There was also good defensive work from Ollie and Joe.
After 13 minutes, some good link up play for Merton. Rio to Faris. Faris to Rio. Rio ends his run with a shot across to the right side of the goal that was wide of the post. Then it was Colts turn to exert some pressure as they had a succession of corners. 15 minutes played, Harry made two decisive tackles and then a great pass through to Maxwell who was now racing away towards the Colts goal. When he arrived at the edge of the penalty area he struck a powerful shot to the bottom right of the goal. It went in!
Merton were now in the ascendancy; more chances were being created by them. There was some good work in midfield by Louis and Percy.
23 minutes on the clock; good work on the right by Joe, a nice stepover and then a cross. Percy connected on the half volley and smashed it into the top left corner of the Colts goal.
2-1 to Merton!
Not long afterwards the ref blew for half-time.
The second half started with Merton kicking left to right and uphill. Colts started the second half with increased intensity and started to apply pressure again. During the 4th minute, Colts won a tackle outside of Merton penalty area and launched an attack. Their striker hit his shot into the top right corner of Merton’s goal. It went in!
8 minutes in, Maxwell controls the ball from a Colts goal kick and heads towards goal. He spots Joe on the overlap and makes the pass. Joe shoots and hits the side netting.
11 mins played, Colts launch an attack resulting in a low shot to the bottom left of Merton’s goal. Max could only parry, the follow up shot was put wide by Colts. That was a close one!
13 minutes, Rio wins a tackle in midfield and threads a fine pass through to Maxwell who is now advancing to the Colts goal. He strikes a fierce shot to the bottom right corner of the goal. You don’t stop those! It’s in.
3-2 to Merton!
14 minutes gone. If ever there was a time to consolidate a lead, this was it. In years to come all of the boys will learn more about ‘game management’ and ‘seeing a game out’. Today there was none of that. Within a minute of Merton’s third goal and the Fortnite inspired goal celebrations, Colts were bearing down on Merton’s goal and Max could do nothing to stop the shot when it came. Boom. Top right corner and in it went.
Disappointed at immediately conceding, Merton went in search of another goal. After 16 minutes, a Dave corner resulted in Max hooking the ball just wide.
18 minutes gone, another Dave corner; Rio has the chance this time. His shot was saved.
In the last five minutes, more pressure on the Colts goal from Merton, more chances created but unfortunately no more goals.
The referee blew for the end of the game.
Dave was awarded the Man of the Match.
Well done again, boys!
Let’s keep it going for Match Day 12.
Author: Mike Pitt
Merton 1 – 2 Old Finchleians
After a very frustrating 2-2 draw away to HSBC last week, the boars 🐗 welcomed Old Finchleians to the hood on Saturday.
The home side were keen to revenge their defeat in the cup earlier this season. A game in all honesty the team from North London won comfortably.
The first half was a competitive affair with both sides showing signs of intensity and will to win. However, it was Merton who would take the lead after 35 minutes.
Jimbo and Josh with some good play on the edge of the box, before an excellent back heel from the latter saw young George through on goal. He didn’t disappoint. 1-0 Merton at the break.
To be honest, the home side didn’t start the second half with as much intensity as they’d shown in the first 45, allowing Old Finchleians more of the ball. But without really creating any chances.
After 60 minutes it remained competitive with chances harder to come by. Only a few things of note, such as Jimbos huge fresh air kick #DOD!
With 10 to go and despite a fair amount of pressure it looked like Merton would hold on for a well deserved victory and important 3 points.
But, unbelievably the away side levelled direct from a corner. No foul on the keeper, just a lot of wind! Two weeks in a row!
And then with the last kick of the game, it was a needless hack from Scott 25 yards out to give the visitors a chance to win the game with the last kick from a set piece. Cruelly the forward strikes a pure shot in corner and the spoils head again to north London.
Real disappointment for Merton, who still can’t believe they lost that game.
Sherbs, Rat, Harrison, Scott, Max, Jimbo, Josh, Pritch, George, Ivan, Jamie
Subs: Woody, Joe, Glen
Dod: Jimbo (undeserved as always)
Actonians 5s vs Merton 3s
Its was an early start for the Boars match day squad as they journeyed to outer reaches of Central line in search of victory.
Having impressed in the previous weeks away victory against Wilsonians confidence was high that another positive result was achievable, the usual incoming and outgoing of players meant that 7 different players appeared on the team sheet from the previous week.
Coming in for their first 3s game of the year were Tom Johnson, Dan Peace and Peter Quainton, they were joined by merton veteran Mike ‘Mustard” Reed and Mike “Stoney” Stone.
Impressively most turned up in good time to listen to their choice of 90’s dance music blasted out by DJ Mustard, although there seemed to be a very broad definition of what dance music actually is, as evidenced by Michael Jackson gracing the nominations.
A short warm up was undertaken and with a decent pitch and reasonably benign atmospheric conditions in effect the scene was set for a decent game of football. Before getting underway a minutes silence was observed for the passing of a member of Actonians.
First Half –
Once underway Merton took a strong grip of proceedings getting the ball down and making some good off the ball runs to open up space in the Actonians final third, the only thing that was missing was the final bit of quality. However it was the home team that took the lead with there first meaningful chance, the ball was launched down field by the Goalkeeper and was misjudged by both centre halves which allowed the centre forward to collect the ball and somehow scuff the shot into the boars net, 1-0.
The setback did not deter the Boars from continuing to play the ball around with the same level of control as before, both full backs and wide midfielders were working well together to keep up the pressure on the home team defence and it was not long before the equaliser arrived. Following more good work down the right Gabby found enough time to put in a quality cross to the far post were it was impressively finished by Dan Peace 1-1. Parity did not last long however as from a corner won shortly afterward actonians retook the lead after the boars failed to clear the ball adequately, the ball falling to an opposition player who had time to bring the ball down and in a crowded penalty area find the net past an unsighted keeper, 2-1. Things then got worse for the boars as the third goal opposition goal followed shortly afterwards, this time the Merton defence could not deal with a free kick into the centre of the box and again the ball feel kindly for an Actonians player to force the ball past the dive of the boars keeper, 3-1.
Second Half –
Although two goals behind it had been a reasonable performance from the boars, the start of the half passed without much incident but that was soon to change, after what can only be described as a terrible tackle Actonians were reduced to 10 men with about 25 minutes left on the clock. Within 10 mins of having the numerical advantage the boars had a goal back, good work from Aaron down the right culminated in a great cross to the back post where Sam Spiers had timed his run to perfection to meet it, 3-2.
Unfortunately Merton could not make any further headway, shots where off target and good positions wasted. The nail in the coffin was when the home side won there only corner of the second half and promptly scored, the boars failing to mark tightly enough to stop the striker meeting a low ball into the box first and squeezing it past the keeper.
Final score Actonians 4 – Merton 2
A disappointing result given some of the football that we played and the standard of the opposition, but it shows that if you don’t do the basics right you get punished.
Merton Squad- Iain Evans, Mike Reed, Peter Quaiton, Tom johnson, Ryan Burchell, Gabriel Draghici, Mike Stone, Neal Davison, Sam Kapadia, Dan Peace, Aaron Byrne, Sam Spiers and Nathan Harris
Merton 6s v Civil Service 8s
After 2 Games away, we return home to face a CS8s side that has been struggling for results of late, with the oppo’s kit turning up late, this did not help either as they strolled out with less than 10 minutes till kick off
The 6s however had been gearing up for the game for over an hour, getting changed in the ‘store room’ after the 4s pulled rank and nicked the changing room by the showers, the 6 squeezed in around the BBQ’s and junior kits to get ready.
With MQ in goal, only conceding 1 goal in the last 2 games and a back 4 of Kevin at left back, Scott and Darren at centre back and Matt on the right, the defence shaped up rather good
Phil T once again takes up the centre mid roll, with Aaron A as his partner, left wing is Chris O and Ricky moves out to the right wing, up front with ‘El cappo’ is Peter O, leaving Ty and Daban on the bench
With the wintery low sun across the pitch as opposed to behind a goal this week, no half advantage to either teams, CS8s kick off. The early exchanges are dominated by the 6s, with ‘Ackers’ and Phil bossing the game, Chris down the left is the early outlet, each time getting the better of the CS8s right back. The signs are there as DG and Peter link up well only for the first few shots to go wide and leave the keeper untested
DG is now becoming a target man, holding play up and using the wide men well and retaining possession for each attack, both Peter and David now finding their range and testing the keeper with long range shots.
It was only a matter of time, a cross to DG some 20 yards out and back to goal, cushions a back heel between the centre backs and into the path of Peter who calmly slots pass the advancing keeper for a well-deserved 1-0 lead
With the game heavily in 6s hands, the lead is soon doubled and once again, DG receives the ball from Phil, controls and back heels another passes to Peter who once again only has the keeper to beat for 2-0
6s in full control and any attack is dealt with by the defence and on the rare occasion, MQ is on hand to tidy up further, a quick punt to the half way line sees DG chest the ball down and lob a pass through to Peter who beats the offside trap, with the keeper off his line and choosing to close Peter down as opposed to go back, the snap shot lob just goes wide
The relentless attacks keep coming, Aaron find himself out wide and woks his way down the line, CS8’s are powerless as he ghosts round the tackles and places a peach of a 35 yard cross into the path of the sprinting Peter who gets in front of his marker, leaps and side foots the shot just over the bar, in fairness the ball did come out the low bright afternoon sun, but the frustration can be seen as Peter berates himself for the miss.
With half time approaching, Chris through ball sends Peter sprinting, with 2 defenders as company, dropping the shoulder one way, then the next, he manages to wrong foot the pair, still some 20 yards out, unleashes a shot with such pace that keeper is powerless, and can only admire as the ball goes top corner to complete a great first half hattrick
With the first half over, a quick change of personal, Ricky who sustained a foot injury in a collision makes way for Daban, and Ackers for Ty.
Civil Services take their time to restart the second half, the half time couldn’t have come soon enough for the oppo and it done them well. Now looking far move organised and with the injection of some youth, pace is the call of the day. a few warning shots go by, but the 6s are still in control, DG linking with Chris to send him down the line, and the return pass is meet with a strong side foot which tamely goes by the enar post, Peter soon find himself out wide and bearing down on goal, with either option to pass or shoot, taking the latter at such a tight angle sees the keeper hold onto the fierce shot, Daban gets in on the act with a mazy run around no less than 4 players, only to fluff his lines directly in front of goal, with no less than 3 players waiting for the pass or the shot beckoning, runs out of room as the keeper snatches the ball away from his feet
All this possession, it’s in 6s fashion to fly by the seat of their pants! CS8s break away, the speedy player manages to evade countless tackles of many descriptions before unleashing a heavy shot that MQ gets to, but squirms under his body and trickles over the line, unfortunate but to be fair, it was coming. Not learning from this, the 6s just carry on attacking, the last 10 minutes sees DG shot just go wide of the post (which Aaron celebrated thinking it was in! even the ref wasn’t too sure!!) Peter once again being foiled by the keeper on more than one occasion (could have had a second half hattrick to go with the first!) and Daban causing all sorts of trouble when he manages to get the ball out of his feet and run at the oppo like a man possessed!!
With seconds remaining, and CS8s with a corner, the ball plays pin ball between the 2 teams before falling to a player just inside the box, whos volley is so well hit the net seems to bulge out of shape, thankfully that was the last kick of the game, maybe another 10 minutes and CS8s could have pulled the game level as the 6s looked like spent force towards the end and as a result, happy with the 3-2 win
Next week, a tough away game at the Bank of England, undefeated in the league but coming off a 15-3 hammering in the LFFC cup. Can the 6s go 4 without loss?
MOTM: Although Peter scores a hattrick in the first half, its Phil T who takes the accolade for some great work in the middle of the park
DOTD: Unfairly, its Chris O, although had a stern game, had a couple of melts that brought a laugh to the squad….
Team: MQ, Dazza, Mazza, Scazza, Kezza, Chrazza, Azza, Razza, Dava, Pazza, Tazza, Dazza… and Phil!
Old Wilsonians 3s vs Merton 3s
Its game day and the team is looking solid with some new faces. The theme of this week
was songs by dead artists picked by Aaron Byrne.
The team is getting ready and warmed up and with Iain managing the team this week he
starts to tell everyone there positions and while doing so he realises that we have 15 men
instead of 14 and with some of the boys worrying they might not play because of Iain’s poor
maths skills the ref decides its fine as long as everyone gets game time.
Its kick off with the team looking confident and ready to kick arse. With nathan, britney, neil
and new kid travis on the bench. The game starts off strong for merton especially with glenn
constantly nutmegging the opposition which brings smiles for us on the bench it’s about 35
minutes and iain brings on neil for glenn and britney for sam kapadia. its half time and with
merton believing we should have a goal with the constant chances puts us with high hopes
of us winning the game.
Second half starts with subs made which are nathan for denys up front and travis for blonde
sam on the wing. The second half starts strong with merton constantly in the opposition’s
half and merton winning a corner which Aaron steps up to take, Aaron crossing it in with no
headers on it the ball bounces around in the box and britney being on the end of it goes for a
chip of the defender and goalkeeper the defender jumps up and hand balls it to block the
chip that was most certainly going in the ref does not see this which brings outrage for
merton especially adam with him running over to the ref in absolut outrage brings merton
having to calm him down.The game carries on with merton still attacking strong wins merton
another corner and with nathan who sees Aaron on the floor from the unlucky attempt on
goal which gave merton the corner, nathan decides to step up and take it. Nathan places the
ball down for a corner noticing that there’s a bit of a ditch which he knew could be a issue
which ended up him being right with nathan kicking the ball on the opposite side and straight
into a tree which brings everyone laughter and nathan knowing that he is most certainly
getting dotd. The game carries on with merton still being a strong side bringing us to wonder
why we haven’t scored yet. And merton gets a break with neil running with the ball towards
goal with him not seeing any other options other than taking a shot he does so which was a
terrible shot but still on target and the ball rolling extremely slow the goalkeeper managers to
let it in with his team in outrage not knowing why the goalkeeper could make such a big
mistake also bringing merton to 1-0 and in to laughter. Its kick off for old wilsonians with
them still in non-belief with the goalkeeper mistakes merton uses that to there advantage
and attacks straight away which brings the ball to travis on the right wing and him swinging it
into the box and denys heading it in with him recently being subbed back on for Aaron and
bringing merton to 2-0. And once again old wilsonians have kick off merton attack strong
bringing some unlucky chances with nathan putting a through ball to Denys and Denys
having no choice but to shoot with him still being outside the box the ball goes straight over
and merton still feeling driven to winning the game. It’s about 70 minutes in and merton still
being 2-0 up old wilsonians are pushing strong and merton and merton feeling nervous that
they might score. It’s about 75 minutes in and old wilsonians still pushing they managed to
get a goal bringing the score to 2-1 and merton feeling frustrated and worrying that they
might come back which isn’t the first for merton and will probably not be the last. Its kick off
for merton and merton not letting that get to them we push strong giving us another chance
with travis getting the ball and passing it to nathan and nathan running forward with only one
defender to stop him and denys running with britney just behind him it was a 3 on 1 chance
and it looking like it could be another goal for merton so with that being said let’s get back to
nathan running with the ball. Nathan ends up passing it straight across to denys and it being
a one on one with the goalkeeper the keeper decides to run out and slindes straight into
denys completely injuring him and the ref not giving any foul and ending the chance on goal.
So with that dneys is being subbed off for Aaron. It’s about 80 odd minutes in and old
wilsonians attacking strong forcing Iain to making a sub for ryan to come off for gabi which
was definitely a strong decision to make with gabi holding them off for the most part. The
game comes to an end leaving the score 2-1 to merton and everyone feeling joyces to the
fact we won which by the way isn’t often.
We head back to the changing rooms with smiling faces and preparing to play the winners
song which most of the boys have not experienced yet bringing absolut joy to the older lads
who have been with merton for while.
MOTM – NEW KID TOM
DOTD – NATHAN
Merton U10s Vs Woking U10s – Sunday 11th November 2018
Another stunning Sunday morning greeted the Merton Under 10s after 24 hours of solid downpours and we were up against Woking U10s. With it being the 11th of November and Remembrance Sunday we held a minute’s silence at the start, which was observed impeccably by the poppy-clad teams.
The home team kicked off downhill towards the car park as has been the norm of late. Maxwell showed some good early form with his running and direct play. Harry found Farris who passed to Louis who crossed for Farris and the shot was blocked. Good early signs for Merton.
Maxwell made a mazy run and couldn’t quite squeeze ball across for Joe or Louis. He was showing great strength to win the ball and play across midfield but too many moves broke down.
After 8 mins Woking had not made a foray into the Merton third of the pitch. Some passes went astray as a sticky pitch took time for the boys to adjust to.
Maxwell was repeatedly winning the ball when he dropped into midfield but resulting moves were not quite bringing home the goal. A corner was taken short with Harry and Louis working in tandem to round a defender and pull back to Maxwell who narrowly shot wide. Another chance for Merton gone begging. Not one of those days surely?!
Farris took aim and narrowly missed a long range drive and then from the restart made a good run on left but could not find Louis with his pass as the ball was cut out. The resulting corner ended up with Louis who was awkwardly positioned and could only push it wide of goal.
Woking made a rare move into the Merton area and a weak shot was no match for Max in goal who took his first touch after 15 mins.
There then followed a lovely bit of wing play from Ollie who stepped out of defence and this led to a shot from close range by Percy. Another just wide. Stu shared that he had been duped into agreeing a deal with Percy such that if he got a hat-trick he would get a reward in the form of some highly age-inappropriate console game. High incentive indeed! At this point Stu felt his money was safe and shouted across the Percy that he only needed to get 2 goals to trigger the deal. Betting on a live market of course somehow alters the market as we were about to find out.
Within moments there was a scramble in the Woking goal-mouth which led to 3 attempts and blocks then Dave popped up to put the ball in to the bottom corner. 1-0. At last some reward for their dominance.
Now Merton were starting to tick and passing became more fluid leading to another shot wide. Harry’s passing was spot on and he and Ollie were working very well at the back. Rio was also on and shwoing good endevaour with his eager running on and off the ball.
Another lovely move involving Ollie, Percy and Dave led to a great through ball and smoothe dinked finish for Maxwell. Aguero would have been proud of that one. 2-0 on 20 mins.
Then a lovely run from mid field was made by Rio which resulted in another shot and miss wide. We had seen a lot of these.
Percy then made a darting run with the ball and shot and hit the post. Did he have any chance of the prize he craved?
His next act was to put the ball out for Woking’s first corner. Nothing came of it and Merton moved upfield to work the ball between Dave and Percy resulting in another shot from Maxwell, nestling this time in the bottom corner of the net. 3-0 on the stroke of half time.
The second half got underway and some early Woking pressure won their second corner but to no avail.
Louis and Farris played a tight 1-2 and then repeated the act which led to a cross and clearance. Then Rio played in Louis who made another cross but the resulting shot was saved. This was followed by 2 powerful runs by Farris, both resulting in shots wide.
Dave then won the ball in mid-field and played Joe in for a lovely finish in the far corner 4-0.
Percy, desperate to get in on the act worked his way through to goal and his shot was blocked. Stu’s money looked safe. But not for long!
A subsequent corner led to Dave taking a powerful shot which was parried into the path of the ever industrious Percy who smashed it home. 5-0 and the game looked very much won. Neal spoke to the Woking manager to suggest they bring on an extra player.
There followed a lovely ball over the top to Percy who took a sweet touch, turned and shot in to the bottom corner. With the main match in no doubt the tension sourced from the bet between father and son. 6-0 but if Percy got another it was time to cash in his chips.
He was now on a mission and another mazy run and shot resulted but no score.
Woking had their first meaningful shot for some time and Max made a good save as it was headed for the top corner.
Then Louis made a great run and cut inside the defender and played Percy in who passed to Joe. Over the line it went from Joe again and now 7-0.
As quick as a flash Maxwell had his hat-trick and with a fine shot from 15 yards into the top corner for 8-0. Had Alan Partridge been watching he might well have said “Boom! Pick THAT out!”
Neal said another player can be added by Woking so it was now 9 vs 7.
Louis and Farris created some lovely interplay between them and Louis crossed for Rio who clipped it over top of bar. No more goals today though as the referee, who had a fine game, blew the final whistle. 8-0 it finished and the boys marched off happy, Percy ready to collect his winnings.
Old Wilsons 8s v Merton 6s
Back down too Old wilson to face up to the 8s this week, brisk day with the chance of rain, however, the pitch is plague by the same low sun as last week
Looking at the oppo, for once the team looks more or less the same as the squad the 6s faced in September, which ended in a one sided 1-1 score line
However, there’s a few changes to the 6s, MQ still between sticks after last week’s clean sheet, left back is Steve B, centre back s of Joe Diss and TJ, and Steve H on the right, Left wing we have Ed, right wing Andrew, with the same pairing as last week, Phil T and Ricky. Up fornt is ‘El cappo and flanked by the speedy one in Daban B. Bench we welcome back Matt H and Ty from a ‘lengthy’ lay off
Confidence is high as the game kicks off, last week’s victory has brought about an air of confidence, passing the ball around, the CM start as they left off last week, passing as well as looking to run at the opposition. OW8s seem a lot more organised and match up well to their counter parts.
Up front, a good tussle starts to evolve between the OW8s centre backs and 6s CF, the ‘old dogs’ seem to be rolling back the years, only to bring back the art of kicking and tugging when the refs not looking! But all done in good humour.
Still, with the game evenly balanced, it’s the OW8s who’s strike first, a quick counter from a decent 6s attack, sees a long ball punted up front, the OW8s CF skips the challenge from Joe and bears down on goal, MQ with a rush of blood steams out at …. Pace! Only to arrive very much second as his rounded and the ball is slotted home. This being the first attack on goal compared to the several good chances wasted by DG and Daban
Not deterred, the 6s go on the front foot, once again from a high ball, DG draws the foul 25 yards out and lines the freekick up with Ed, who is selling the left foot option well. DG fakes the shot, Ed shoots… miss!
Another ariel attack and another foul on DG from a similar position to Eds debacle, this time DG lines the shot up alone, take his run up and spots Steve H unmarked wide right, instead of shooting, slots Steve in for a first time cross that is converted just wide from a deflection for a corner. A great flighted ball by Ricky is flicked on and ends up 15 yards out for a first time cutting side volley from DG which whistles passed the crossbar… 6s look good
For the play the 6s had, it’s frustrating to go in the first half down 1-0. Changes are made, JD makes way for Matt H, creating a shuffle at the back, with Matt going left back/left Wing and Steve B going Centre Back… Ty comes on for Ricky in the Centre
Game kicks off, once again the 6s get to grip with the game, Ty, looking a bit match rusty gets a few good touches in and keep it simple, Matt over lapping with Ed start to get some good work done down the left, Daban as ever, is serious threat with his pace but can’t seem to catch a break and get his shots off. Another change sees Ricky come on for Daban
Still probing, Andrew down the right starts to get some space, a few good through balls form DG and Ty sees Andrew get the edge, one such attack sees Andrews cross ‘passed back’ to the goalie by OW8s centre back and give away a needless free kick 6 yards out, once again Ed talks the talk… all he has to do is hit the target… a massive gap appears at the far post, as the balls is rolled into his path, he goes for all power and no finesse… from 6 yards, the balls rockets over the cross bar and DOTD is sorted!
Ed goes off and Daban comes back on and a formation change of 3-5-2. Flooding the midfield with Ty, Rick and Phil seems to work, however into the final third of the pitch and every chance seems to be over played or under passed, but all this is from just trying too hard and not wanting to lose, the fluent passing from the first half is replaced with panic or kick and rush
The dying embers of the game and tempers are getting strained. DG and the 2 centre backs have lost their humour and are basically just lumping each other (still without malice though… no harm in an exchange of raking studs now and then between the old boys!!)
Another corner to 6s, this time Matt curls in a great ball, DG contests the challenge with no other than the waring centre backs, the shot hits the cross bar and comes back out, Daban is the quickest to react and stabs the ball home from close range, 1-1
The remain minutes is the Alamo as the 6s hunt for the winner, however to no avail and the ref calls it a day 1-1. A close encounter, but once again it would seem the 6s drop 2 points as opposed to gaining 1.
After 2 away games, the 6s make their way home v Civ 8s, which was bit of a testy affair last season against the ‘then 7s.
MOTM: MQ in goal done well with what came at him, just one mistake cost him a clean sheet, and a superb save from one of his own (again) kept him in the frame for MOTM, but once again, Tom J was a rock in the back, and at this rate will be looking to play higher up on this form
DOTD: Could have been Steve B for another attempt at an own goal, this time heading from 8 yards out, but fortunately, MQ was at his best not react and tip the ball over
But it must go to…. Ed… think we found out his right peg doesn’t work very well with free kicks from any range!
Team: MQ, Steve H, Tom J, Joe D, Steve B, Andy, Rick, Phil, Ed, Daban, David ©
Ty & Matt.
The 1st team have had a difficult start to the season with many challenging away days, depleated squads and tough cup draws, so it was refreshing to have a week off, be back at the Hood and to look around the changing room to see a strong mix of boars regulars and marque summer signings.
However, the optimisium was short lived, with the opposition NUFC Oilers (off the back of two wins a draw in the league) seemly not having read from the same script. Within minutes the Oiler’s had created their first chance, breaking through the midfield, before drawing a smart near post save from the recently called up Serbs. From the resulting corner their number 14 had a free header at the back post which hit the bar twice. For the next 20 minutes this was the pattern of play. Oiler’s pressing high, Merton giving away possession, Oiler’s shoot – Sherb’s saves, Oiler’s corner – free header no14 – Sherbs save. Repeat.
Sherbs having been called up from the 2’s due to an injury to our normally ‘very quiet’ regular keeper, made five or six goal saving stops in the first 20 minutes and kept the boars in the game. His performance was Hugo Loris esq (think World Cup winner not the Spursy lad).
A counter attack led by Rat, a driving run down the wing by attacking forward George and some fantastic no 9 hold up play from new signing Jamie led to Merton going one nil up against the run of play. George with the goal and Jamie with assist.
With the Boars having not only weathered the storm but also snatching a goal Clappers made the call for an early sub and Josh was introduced to anchor the midfield and disrupt their centre forwards. This didn’t pay dividends Immediately as Oiler’s countered from a Merton corner a pulled a cheap goal back. 1-1.
Before the half was over Merton had got a strong foothold in the game and just before the half time whistle some exquisite play in the centre of park from Woody released George who terrorised their left back before getting off a crossshot which was only half cleared. Jamie latched onto the defensive error and finished, in off the post, to give Merton the lead going into the break. 2-1 Merton. Jamie goal.
At this point Oiler’s heads were gone. A few strong boars challenges early in the second half and the Oiler’s were mouthing off. Unfortunately for them, the referee who had good game, did not like it and sent one of their whingers off for a 10 minute sin bin.
During this period it was time for Merton to kill the game off and what better chance than a soft penalty won by Merton’s usual penalty taker and all round nice guy Woody. Of course, nothing in football is that simple and overcame Josh to take the ball off Woody and step up to take the penalty. It was a fantastic penalty … low, hard, bottom right but I’m telling you now the Hood won’t see a better save this season! Ridiculous tip round the post from a clearly in form keeper.
Merton were the better team second half with H and Browner having nullified the attacking threat of Oiler’s centre forwards. Jamie, who led the line well all game, bagged his second on about the 75th minute mark when he instinctively pounced on a loose knock down in the area to finish and compete a brace.
Merton shut up shop and were not under much pressure until the 93rd minute when Sherb’s went from World Cup Hugo to Spurs Skipper with a soft goal kick straight to their striker who slotted. 3-2 Final Score.
MOTM – Jamie. Two very good goals and an assist.
DOTD – Josh. Saved penalty.
Boars on the march….. contenders by Christmas. Watch this space.