Following a hammering in game week one the 3s turned up seeking to put last weeks torment well and truly behind them. A dressing room full of new and old Merton blood sat eager to get things going. Fantastic timekeeping and mustard like money collecting started proceeding with clear intent to deliver a positive result. A clear dressing room veto on Ryan’s thoughts regarding dick of the day & match reporting was quickly decided with shouts of “who does he think he is? club secretary?” echoing in the air. With cliches ringing in everyone’s ears on how we will approach this game, each and every player contributed massively to what can only be described as an almost perfect day at the hood. Marred slightly by a very dubious sending off from both teams. More about that later.
With the oppo running late it was imperative that the 3s asserted themselves quickly. Captain for the day Vincenzo chose to go with the wind first half and it seemed like a wise call as Merton quickly found theirselves dominating possession with some slick passing on what was a very good pitch following Friday’s tsunami. It soon became apparent that this oppo were there for the taking and that we were a lot more focused this week. So we unleashed the reincarnation of Mr David Donavan (also known as Donno,donny and bloke upfront in mom nominations) Donno caused havoc to the Norseman defence with endless running, chasing down and ultimately a very well deserved hat trick and at least 8 assists, winning a penalty and hitting the post. (So he told me when I subbed him)
The first half went by very quickly and early on an almost fatal passage (which Iain was very unhappy about) of play between centre backs quickly turned into a goal for Merton on the break. Some neat passing in the middle of the pitch sent Andy off down the left who coolly slotted the ball sideways for Donno to get his first. This was followed up by lots of good football throughout the half. Although one pass from Neal in the left back position to Dan at right back caused a brief scare.(which Iain was very unhappy about) Dan at right back looked assured and comfortable playing the ball on the ground but was very happy to mix it up and send the ball up the line when needed. Vincenzo and Walshy dominated their forwards and gave very little away with Ricardo solid and willing to push on at left back. Both holding midfielders Neal and Darren (not Daz he is not a washing detergent) generally marshalled that area of the pitch breaking up any small threat caused and managed to control the game with some very decent passages of play from left to right and vice versa. Iain and Andy on both flanks always available and both happy to do their fair share of tracking back which helped the shape of the team immensely. Another attack saw Merton gain a corner and after a quick one two Iain was open around the back post, Neal knocked a ball just a little too long (which Iain was very unhappy about) and the chance disappeared. The second came with a mixture of pinball and quick feet from Neal, Joe (with beard) and Dan with Joe (with beard) neatly tucking home after a peach of a ball from Dan. There was also a penalty won by Donno who was clean through knocked it past the keeper then ran into him and the shouts and appeals were enough to convince the ref it was a foul. Ricardo offered pre match to take pens in search for his hat trick. He stepped up succeeding successfully in missing 3 pens in a row with shouts of LBW from the cricket match going on in the distance! (Although without a video umpire the batsman was given not out!) His frustration got the better of him picking up a cheeky yellow for a tackle soon after.
At this point in the match report there are certainly some worried men reading … Darcy (or is it Ben? no ones knows really), Dan K, Tony, Ryan, Mike Stone and Denyz all secretly thinking that they had better go training this week and they’d be right to be worried as the new Merton blood wanted to stake their claim on places and on this performance I am glad I am not Lofty. The second half kicked off continuing the same theme of dominance. With Frankie coming on at left mid for Ricardo and Joe (without beard) coming on for Joe(with beard)these hungry boars were ready to charge! Straight from kickoff the pressure was applied with Frankie bursting almost literally down the left and finally squaring it only for the keeper to make a solid save at the back post. Frankie and Iain continued to dominate their full backs and with Joe (without beard) bringing some beautiful footwork to proceedings Merton were coasting. Then the madness came the referee clearly bored he was not in the game enough decided to award a soft free kick against Merton, this resulted in a push in the head, a push back, a bit of squaring up and about 17 handbags. The ref calmed proceedings called both players over who had clearly resigned their selves to a stupid yellow each. only to be shocked the ref went to the dreaded shorts pocket and pulled out the red for both players. In disbelief both players left the pitch hugging, holding hands and vowing to take on the establishment together! Dave Loughton correctly brought me down to earth quickly in the bar telling me that I can appeal if I have video evidence. Unfortunately one player cam was focusing on Paul Walshy’s(Welchie’s) new fake Puma kings he purchased from Sports Direct earlier that day and the other was still searching for Ricardo’s penalty ball in the first half. The game was by no means over though there was still plenty of work to do and this was done professionally. Donno getting his Hat trick then getting subbed, Joe (without beard), Frankie and then Ricardo (with the goal of the day) finishing off a clearly desperate Norseman side. These goals were assisted but to be honest I can’t remember them as I was too busy sulking on the sideline however you can probably bet money at least one of them was called Joe (with or without beard) or Dan. There was still time for some more yellows from the ref and a goal from Norseman which they probably didn’t deserve. All in all a really assured performance from a clearly jubilant bunch of lads. The traditional one step beyond song was introduced to the new blood with Lofty even trying to get in on the act to celebrate a great result and we look forward to a local derby next week with that lot from Carshalton.

Mom; Donno but with some mentions to Joe(with beard) and Andy

A very close run Dick of the week contest between Neal (sending off) and Ricardo( pen miss) was sealed by Joe (without beard) who decided admirably he couldn’t vote for Ricardo for two games in a row hence my efforts in writing this report!
Great effort lads.
Vincenzo (captain)
Joe (with beard)

Joe (without beard) Frankie

Posted in Match Reports 3s