Merton 4s 2 v 0 Merton 5s (from the 4s perspective)
Following last week’s disappointing exit in the AFA Cup, it was back to League action for the 4s. This week however wasn’t just any league fixture, it pinned the 5s against the 4s. Not only three points up for grabs but bragging rights too.
Numbers were scarce in respect of the 4s, with only 11 players available. The 5s however arrived with 13. One of whom was approached to switch sides for the day. An offer that was declined without hesitation. In order to ensure that we had back uponthe pitch, Luke Newman, the 5s Manager, agreed to get kitted up and come on if required.
Due to the personnel available to us, we lined up in a 4-4-2 formation. Kieran Lee taken his usual slot between the sticks. The back four from right to left consisted of John Gridley, Dan Gridley, Joe Plumridge and myself. In the middle of the pack, again from right to left was, Marcus Perkins, Roman Bilivitskiy, Mo Chouikhi and Callum Fisher. Leading the line was Dom Plumridge and Denys Zhurbiy.
There was nothing to separate either side in the first 20 minutes. It was after 20 minutes that the 4s, wearing all yellow, wereable to get a foothold on the game and overpower the 5s, wearing blue shirts and shorts with pink socks, in all areas of the field.
It was also around this time that Luke had to unfortunately get kitted up in yellow to replace Marcus. I have to commend the professionalism Luke showed. You wouldn’t blame him for coming on and making a few ‘mistakes’ to give the 5s an advantage, given that he is the Manager, however this was not the case. He put the effort in that was asked of him and stood out as one of the best performers on the day.
Getting a foothold in the game allowed us to play the passing game we knew that we were capable off. Our dominance paid off when Dom managed to score from with an overhead kick albeit from a standing position. Denys awarded the assist with a header from Johns throw in.
The talk at half time as a positive one, we just had to go back out there and put the same effort in as we did in the first half.
From the first whistle to initiate the start of the second period, the 4s were in control as the 5s were getting frustrated thata few decisions (offsides and handballs in particular) were going against them.

With 20 minutes to go, Denys doubled our advantage. His effort beating, assisted by Dom, beating Chappell at the near post.
As the clocked ticked down, the 5s had a sniff of goal when Dulanie was played through for a one-on-one. His tame shot however was comfortably held by Kieran.
This was a massive win and one that hopefully kick-starts our league campaign. Four points after two games is a decent return.
Next week we welcome City of London Reserves to Joseph Hood. We need to ensure that we go into the game as we finished this one. If we do, another three points are surely guaranteed!
SCORER(S): Dom Plumridge, Denys Zhurbiy
MOTM: Mo Chouikhi
DOTD: Kieran Lee
LINE-UP: Kieran Lee (GK), John Gridley, Dan Gridley, Joe Plumridge, Edward Plaistow (Capt.), Marcus Perkins (Luke Newman), Mo Chouikhi, Roman Bilivitskiy, Callum Fisher, Denys Zhurbiy, Dom Plumridge

Posted in Match Reports 4s