Another Saturday, another game.

Aaron Byrne here giving you the weekly match report due to Luke’s mysterious disappearance. I have been told he is waiting to be released from daycare… Lets hope order is soon restored.

The Clash –
Top of the table clash against Old Wilsonian’s. An away game with a lot at stake, could the magnificent 5’s actually top the table? With Merton 5’s on a roll, another day at the office, 4 from 4 was the mindset before the game.
“Can lighting strike four times?” was Dwayne Bedford’s motto before the game. Im sure the boy was itching to take another tumble 😉 Meanwhile Josh seemed intent on getting the match ball this week as he arrived with his game face on, maybe it was all the Zlatan comparisons that had him motivated. Our beloved Jayden Smith never fails to entertain and did himself no favours when he was quite frankly showing off his rear end to the lads during the stretches, lucky for him Lee Leenihan was not with us. If you’ve played for Merton 5’s before you should be familiar with Naked Lee Time by now.

The starting Line Up:
Sam was the man behind the sticks, Delman and Josh as our usual right and left back. Darren in centre back partnered with the experienced Steve Burchell. Ackers (Aaron) was our skipper, playing the holding mid role backed by Clive in midfield. I (Aaron Byrne) was as usual on the wings with Dwayne. Dulanje was up top, partnered with the return of the welsh assassin Rich who needs to get the ball rolling into the net.
Tom, Anam and Samurai Steve started on the bench.

First half-
Merton 5’s started the game on the back foot, allowing the home team to have more of the possession for the first 15/20 mins or so. We soaked up pressure the first 15 mins thanks to our marvellous De Gea in goal. Our amazing Sam did not seem to be affected by his birthday antics the night before, pulling off 4 fantastic saves in the first half! Both teams created a few decent chances, but the defence was solid.
Josh was reading everything at the back, not allowing his attacker a sniff of space. We even had Dwayne dropping back, with brilliantly timed sliding challenges, perhaps a potential change in position? Merton looked particularly deadly on the counter, bursting out from the wings, with good link up play with the two men up front. Ackers and Clive did a good job in holding the ball up in the centre of the park.

The goal –
The moment came around the 30th minute mark, Super Sam played a brilliant long ball from the goal kick,  that flew over the whole midfield, into the path of the centre backs, allowing the tricky Aaron Byrne to latch onto it. Noticing the keeper sleeping of his line, he casually hit a brilliant 30 yard lob timed to perfection which dinked over the keeper into the back of the net. Poor keeper was caught up daydreaming probably thinking about his next pint, to be fair he did try his best to make it back, i’m sure lots of calories were lost in that moment.

Second half –
Another good half by merton, in truth the first 30 mins of this half were a lot easier than the remainder. This game should of been dead and buried by the 60-70th mark..
Striker Dulanje had a handful of chances that could of been in the back of the net on another day, I should have also added to my tally with a miss in the box that led to a throw in to the opposition. We both blame the rain for not having a brace each. Even Delman got in on the misses almost defying the odds with a goal, after making a great run. Rich played a deeper role in the second half holding the ball up well bombing forward like a mighty white Yaya Toure.
Substitutes Anam, Tom Reid and Steve Harvey all filled in well to grind out the result in the end, playing positions they don’t usually play in for the benefit of the team. Well done lads.

The last 15 mins was a tight affair, with the team going into defence mode to grind out the result, although a few counter attacking chances missed could of made it 2-0.

Full time, another clean sheet. 1-0 victory. 3rd (only on goal difference). Come on!

Man of the match-
Let’s thanks ‘keeper Sam Ripley for showing up and not going missing on his birthday like something you’d see in a movie! On this occasion he takes the match ball. 6/7 great saves in the match that earned him a clean sheet. Vocal, brilliant handling, and excellent delivery from his goal kicks, Add in his assist for the winning goal.

Posted in Match Reports 5s