Merton 6s v City of London 3rd
A week of snow, rain, ice, frost and little sunshine, the 6s went to work to make sure this fixture went ahead, switching the game to WCE on the Thursday, confirmed the game to go ahead, until the ref pulled out!! so bit more running around and a few calls/messages, we almost end up with 2!!
So, after all that, and confirming with C3s that the game is on, we venture down to the extensions, buoyed from the previous weeks goal feast and knowing that we beat this team away, only 3 weeks ago.
To the game, and a minor delay while we wait for the remaining C3s to turn up, a quick look over confirms that this is not the team from the previous meeting! .. and now all the hard work of getting this fixture on is about to be undone for the wrong reasons
The opening exchanges are even, a simple 4-3-3 from weeks gone by is in place. DG is playing centre forward, but drops deep between C3s midfield and defence, leaving James and Lewis with the room to run in behind with there pace. Ackers, Dobby and Truman make up the 3 in midfield, and work tirelessly tracking the very fit oppo. The centre backs of Joe and Darren are tested by C3s forward, and contain most of what’s thrown at them, Burchell Snr and Harvey keeps tabs on the wingers.
All balls down the middle are being won by the 6s, DG receives the ball and just inside the oppos half, and sends a curling through ball over the top for Lewis to latch onto, seeming being pushed wide, he manages to lose his marker and smash a high ball into the roof of the net to take a 1-0 lead, unfortunately, not to soon after, Lewis is looking rather green and leaves the field of play to be replaced by Pete.
What looked like a promising start is soon quashed, Darren Avery having to go off after a knee injury finishes him for the day, Chris O goes left back and Steve B moves centre, maybe the early changes disrupt’ s the 6s as not so long after sees C3s pull level, a shot beating MQ at the near post, 1-1
If that wasn’t disappointing enough, C3s take the lead when MQ only manages to parry the ball towards the goal and stand flat footed as Steve H tries to hook it away, only to end up in the net 1-2
To compound the capitulation, C3s capitalise on a mix up from a corner, when all of the 6s break out to leave C3s on the 6 yard area, Steve B and MQ are caught holding hands and ball watching, keeping everyone on side, as the ball is nodded home from close range 1-3
Halftime and the manager use some colourful language to rally the troops, only to start the second half in much as the same as the first ended. Another mistake inside the box is punished by another goal, this time, MQ not being able to jump as he sees the looping shot sail over his head for 1-4
Finally, and bit of luck. Once again its DG who receives the ball and drops the shoulder and curls another ball over the top, this time for James to speed pass the centre backs and lob the keeper from 20 yards.. the fight back is on .. 2-4
Short lived… a melee in the 6s box sees the final shot avoid 3 players and the unsighted MQ to go 2-5 up, and to further compound the misery, a simple back pass to MQ sees him under no pressure to release the ball although the C3s striker is bearing down on him from the half way line, after taking 3 touches to many, the attempted clearance is blocked and rolled into an empty net. 2-6
DG makes way for Lewis is who feels well enough to take part in the last 15 or so, the change is a bit of rest bite, but its not long before MQ is beaten by a solid header for 2-7. Steve B makes way for Steve H, as its just about getting to the end of the game now
Once again, Lewis needs to depart, Steve B is thrown into the mix up front and its not to long before his moment of glory is upon him. A searching ball is sent over by James, the keeper begins to come but retreats as Steve B controls some 16 yards out, cries of ‘shooooot’ can be heard as the cogs in the old footballing brain tick over, ‘place it left, place it right, chip the keeper, sit him down’ the choices are endless.. however.. Mr B decides that smashing it down the middle as hard as he can was the correct option, not only did the ball meet the far end of the common, but the C3s keeper decided that it was game up as he picked his bag up and trotted off to the changing room! He got called back and was in place, just in time to see his team take a further goal when Joe, out of frustration more than anything, up ended their forward to give away a penalty which was dispatched for a 2-8 score line, the ref blows for full time to put the 6s out of their misery
Questions must be asked, how does a team that’s not won on the road since October, lost to ourselves as well as other teams below us in the last 3 games or so, pull off such a huge score line. With there first team getting postponed due to the weather, the ‘additional’ players made a huge difference and is reflected in the score line. Maybe this is something that needs to be investigated by the league
Next week, away days to Civ 8… let see how that pans out!!
MOTM: James, run his legs off and took his goal well
DOTD: MQ.. a day to forget
Team: MQ, Steve B, Steve H, Darren A, Joe D, Aaron A, David G ©, Andrew D, Lewis R, James E, Pete O, Ryan B, Chris O