Category: Match Reports 6s
Merton 6XIv Bank of England5XI
The clocks have gone forward and spring has spring, unfortunately they have forgot to tell the weather as arriving at the Hood it looked bleak with one pitch up, heavy cloud cover a cold wind and a hint of rain.
The team start to assembly being a combination of 3s, 5s, & 6s all in good sprites with the usually pre-match banter. A few players debating if they will last the full 90 Mins because of injury and/or lack of fitness however this was too much of an issue with 14 players, but wait Tom Johnson messaged in at 1.30 he was going to making it.
Out on the pitch we when through a full warm route to test the various aches ad pains with everybody declaring themselves ok to start. Which we did well and in an attacking mode with the usually 4-3-3 formation, with James & Lewis wide & Peter O in the middle. We had the B of E on the back foot and create many chances unfortunately without finishing any of them until Lofty hit a shot from 30 yards with plenty of top side so that hit the cross bouncy down & up a couple of time before crossing the line.
At this point B of E finally woke up and start to get through our midfield and they final won a corner, which we initially cleared but didn’t shut down the player 30 yards out who hit cleaned into the top right corner of the net, B of E have a video as proof as even they could believe that there player could hit a shot that well.
The rest of the half we created more chance which we turned into half chance with Pete & James being wayward with their shooting whilst the B of E were limited to long range efforts that generally when wide.
In the 2nd things didn’t change much although B of E did come back into the game however their goalkeeper was the busier but we couldn’t score. Eventually the B of E managed to pull our defence out of shape and they deliver an inch prefer cross for the centre forward to volley home from 8 yards. There 3rd came with 15 minutes left a free kick from 30 yards that deflected off Lewis’s shoulder over Martin.
The last 15 minutes was spent in the Bank’s half but we couldn’t score. It was a disappointing result but we did keep trying.
Last Week’s MOM Martin Quinlan was back in his regular position for this season Goalie and had a quiet and cold afternoon for his 900th game for Merton having one shot to save but had no chance with the 3 Goals. In fact, spent a lot of the last 15 mIns on the half way line. In 900 games the B of E have been the most regularly Martin has played against. Onwards to 1000 games.
The Central defensive of Neil & Kevin a solid games with Neal being our start player. As for the DOD there were several candidates James & Peter for missing many good chances, Ryan with his powerful throw ins which force Lewis off the pitch and Luke to have a poor first touch when he came on and several players for getting frustrated and need speaking to the by the referee. James offer his performance for DOD but by a split decision it when to Tom for not turning up.
The most stupid moment was when the B of E very large Centre handled the ball with 5 mins left. He wasn’t even booked!
Martin Q, Kevin L, Matt H., James E., Lewis R., Aaron A., Chris O., Simon W (Lofty), Ryan B., Pete O-A., Neil D., Subs Luke N., Marcus P.
MoM – Neil Davison
DoD – Tom Johnson
Civil Service 8s v Merton 6s
Spring has sprung, away to Civ 8 in sunny Chiswick, only a 2-hour journey through all the road works, still could be worse… after all the rain at the hood last week and witnessing 3 ducks swimming on pitch one, it’s nice to get out and about
Testing week to get the players out, going from 18 to 9 with in a day, and then a frantic ring round to get cover after one particular player though it would be funny to make themselves available even though they were not even on the same continent !! but more on that later ..
A rare outing for MQ at left back as we get a cameo from Lenners between the sticks, Steve B at left back with Haydn and Tom centre, Midfield of Niall, Phil and Dobby with the usual 3 of DG, Lewis and James up front.. Joe making a late appearance starts on the bench
Game starts with the 6s on the front foot, looking fresh after 3 weeks without a game, the passing is a bit erratic but still ahead of the C8 who seem to slow out the blocks and making a few unforced errors. Steve B after a few moments of madness on the ball (a good to many ‘HAVE IT!’ moments) starts to compose himself and settles the back line and begins to finally play out form the back. A good passage of play between the back 4 and midfield, which could have been more than 15/20 uninterrupted passes, unfortunate breaks down, but it’s a good sign and something that’s been requested all season (and they wait till the final few games to show their stuff!!)
Well on top and only some poor finishing keeps the score at 0-0, 6s finally yields a bit of luck, Niall once again a wizard with the left foot, sets James off down the wing and into the box for the shot, beats the keeper but is blocked, DG following up with a 50/50 that sees the ball cleared by the keeper, onto DG and looks to be going out for a throw, MQ chases down the loose ball and has time to roll a yard or two forward and without doubt, sees the keeper still struggling to get back, launches a shot back in the mix from all of 40 yards, the keeper trying his best to reach but is still a good foot or so short as the ball sails over the out stretched arm, even evades the 2 centre backs who also try to make a clearance just as the ball dips under the ball and in the goal for 0-1 lead. MQ is already standing with both arms in the air and is rightly mobbed by everyone of the 6s, to congratulate him on his first goal since his 84th birthday 10 years or so ago!
Not much more to report first half, think everyone was to ecstatic for Mr Merton himself!!
2nd half, MQ is replaced for Joe D as we can’t risk the old boy getting a 2nd, god knows what all the excitement would do to his heart, as well as muted claim to a starting spot up front!! (worried look over shoulder form el’cappo there!!)
Bit slower out the blocks but still on top, however, C8 are more organised and unluckily to go 2 behind. Steve B puts in a corner, straight on the money, which sees a mass scrabble between C8 players to clear (6s I think was quite amused to the thrashing around to clear the ball and stood and watched!) the first clearance hits the back of a C8 player that sees the ball roll towards the line, keeper try’s to claim it, only for the centre back to ‘hoof one clear’, again hitting the back of a c8 player, onto the shin of the left back and then the knee of the right back (ok, might have made some of this up, but its more or less right!!).. and roll over the line for 0-2 and coasting…
Attention now turns to Lenners, after a fantastic first half (forgot to mention the bit about Lee jumping around like a salmon and catching the ball without any pressure around him… BUT on landing belly first, sees the ball slips from his mitts and luckily to Haydn to clear!) .. being slightly off his line by 20 yards or so, for most of the 2nd half, it was only a matter of time before someone chances the lob and one C8 player does, from inside the centre circle, still… Lee looked to have the ground covered as he back peddled, but was unfortunate not to be the required 6ft 8inches tall to tip the chance over the crossbar… and once again lays on the floor like a fish… out of water! 1-2
With chances still coming thick and fast, its bad luck and good defending that keeps the 6s from going ahead, tiredness creeping in on both teams and some good football on show. The counter attacks are scooped up by Tom and Haydn and it looks like an away win is on the cards.
A counter attack by C8 down the right sees the ball cut in and still 25/30 yards out, C8 take a first time toe punt which goes like a rocket, Lenners, although is the right position this time, cant do much about it as the ball manages to go between the out stretched fingers and the underside of the bar to bring the game level 2-2.
The 6s let a game slip and was cruising, and with the remaining 10 minutes or so, can’t convert any more chances, the whistle blows just as a final attack was getting in the 18-yard box, but in the end, its 2 points dropped as opposed to a point gained
Nice day out, and our final away game of the season sees us with only 2 losses on the road, a far better improvement on last year. We now have a further week off before we welcome B0E to the hood, weather and ducks permitting
MOTM: MQ… who else after that goal
DOTD: Close call on Lenners the fish, but Steve H for dicking around with availability late in the week and causing a headache trying to get cover
Old Sal’s Rev v Merton 6s
A month without a game for the 6s and missing a few of the regulars as we welcome OSR back to the hood to host their home game. With a 2oc ko and only 9 players turning up for the oppo, game gets delayed till 2:15. The 6s however, having the likes of Neal D, Dennis Z, Roma B available, for selection, helps the cause against a very good footballing team in Old Sal’s Reserves
Finally getting the game on the way, the 6s start like a team that haven’t played in a while, long balls punted up front, no calling or tracking of runners, no surprise that OSR take the lead early on, with some slick passing, down the wing and into the box, it was like a training game as MQ is exposed to a 1v1 at close quarters, with the ball ending up in the net 1-0
Not learning from the mistakes, OSR almost double the lead on several occasions, only for some last ditch tackling and woeful finishing, the score remains 1-0. The 6s start to get themselves into the game. Some meek and tame attacks result in a few corners, James’s deliveries from the right creates chances, but no one can convert and OSR clear their lines
Although getting on top, its OSR who double the lead against the run of play. Breaking away, and playing the neat short passes, it’s a simple one/two into the box, resulting in a low cross being put into an empty net as MQ tried to close the gap down. 2-0
Merton turn it up a notch, the tackles are going in thick, OSR are now able to slow play down with each foul awarded, the casual approach is there own undoing as the centre backs take to many touches and are robbed by the quick thinking Lewis, whose first shot is saved by the keeper, but the rebound hits him on the shin and rolls into an empty net, a bit of luck, but its welcome 2-1. As the game approaches half time, the 6s are more on top and look to grab the equaliser with only the odd half chance, however its 2-1 at the break
Some changes to be made, Ryan B for Andrew D, Dennis for Steve H and Chapple for Iain, the 6s start the half with a little more zip in the game. Trying to get the ball down and play through the midfield brings a couple of chances, Lewis and DG both being denied by the keeper
OSR still threaten to extend the lead, and one again its more the fact the shots are off target that keeps the score at 2-1. With MQ doing more miles retrieving the ball from each shot, it takes Tom to place the kick and rush the pass while MQ is still behind the goal. With 60 yards of open spaced and 7 white tops to hit… he somehow manages to pass to the only red top on the edge of the area! Surprised is an understatement as he controls the ball and takes a touch or two, looking unsure that play is continuing, and rolls the ball in for 3-1!! The goal is greeted by stunned silence from the 6s, and laughter from OSR, as no one can quite believe what has happened..!
A quick change see Lewis go off with a calf strain and Dennis back on up front
So, the good work at the start of the half is undone, nevertheless, the 6s carry on pressing and soon rewarded for some good play. DG winning the ball and passing out wide to James, who hits the by-line and once again whips in a cross that’s sees Dennis at the back stick rise above the centre backs and hammer a header home from 6 yards, 3-2
Tails up, but still second best to some of the football being played by OSR, the 6s have to dig in deep against the quick counter attack and the fast, damaging passing
A good passage of play by the 6s, Neal putting a shift in, wins the ball, Steve H to DG who puts James out wide to run at the left back, the coming together sees the ball go out for a goal kick. OSR keeper places the ball but passes straight to James. James, bemused by the pass looks back and shrugs.. The Ref waves play on and James rounds the stationary keeper and slots home. OSR protest, saying the keeper thought it was a corner, but the ref, who at one point seemed to agree, couldn’t change the fact that it was still a goal, the protest resulted in a sin bin and a few sulky faces
So, with a comical second half coming to a close, both teams have a chance to nick the winner in the ‘ding-dong’ closing seconds, but it finishes 3-3. A bit harsh on the home team, but the 6s made their own luck and for once, got a reward. Next week, a home game that is in fact a home a game and not an away game played at home!
Bank of England come to the hood, the last outing was a hard fought 2-2 draw, with the 6s coming back from 2-0 down in the last 10 minutes. Hopefully, we can carry some of today’s luck over to next week
MOTM: James, made one, bought one and run all day. But some mention to Neal D, had a great game in the middle as well as Lewis, who run himself into the ground for an hour, chasing everything and making his chances.
DOTD: An easy one this week… Tom J..
Team: MQ, Ryan B, Iain E, Tom J, Steve B, Dennis Z, Roma B, Neal D, James E, Lewis R, DG ©
Mark C, Steve H, Andrew D
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
Merton 6s v Old Wilsons 9s
Todays game will be Merton 6s v Old Wilsons 9s v The Pitch!
After an unsettled weather pattern and a cold start, the pitch was thawing out to be tad bit heavy. Even before the game started, you could see the middle areas cutting up pretty bad, so this made for an interesting leveller between M6s being physical and OW9s being quick (and very young!!)
After a very lethargic warm up for the 6s, the game got underway with OW9s having first kick of the game, straight from the off, the pitch wasn’t allowing for any quick turns and forced the opening to be played in direct lines of play
After a minor scare in defence for Merton, first blood is drawn when Lewis is freed on goal for a 1v1 and manages to slot neatly passed the keeper from 16 yards. This is soon followed up by James being flicked through for another 1v1, the first shot being parred by the keeper, which James had to check back to gather the ball and roll into an empty net as the OW9s tried to regroup
2-0 and seemingly cruising, OW9s countered and worked the ball down the 6s left, into the area with simple side steps around the on coming slide tackles, the cross is meet with a looping header over the out stretched arms of MQ to pull the game back to 2-1
Not even halfway through the first half and the pitch is already getting heavy, once anyone is committed to a tackle, it’s a simple 50/50 if you get clattered or able to step aside! The game starts to get very gritty, with fouls now going either way due to the rash sliding around. The physical side of the 6s is on top as the young OW9s can’t quite get to grips with using their speed and footwork
6s now imposing their game, see’s DG receive the ball just inside the area, with a quick turn and move (for such a lump) El’cappo shot is placed away from the keeper to restore the 2 goal lead and a 3-1 score line
OW9s now looking a bit out of sorts are being run ragged by Merton’s front 3, twice Lewis and DG beat the keeper to great through balls, only for the both of them to go for goal instead of rolling the ball back for the better shot by a team mate, Steve H on the right pulls a great cross back to DG on the edge of the area, only for the shot to go inches wide
The pressure pays off with corners, James now swinging them in on the right finds DG in the centre who wins the header, the keeper does well to get to, but the follow up is slammed into the roof by the captain, for his 2nd on the day and to increase the lead to 4-1.
OW9s rally and bring themselves back into the game, once again, the young squad put together some neat football and march straight through the back line of Merton and slot the ball passed MQ, 4-2 and the signs are creeping in that mobility within 6s back line is becoming limited
Still time for another attack, this time by Merton, Lewis is freed by some good inter play from the front 3, with options in front of him, works his way around and powers a shot pass the stranded keeper and a half time lead of 5-2
Not much to say at half time and with limited options to change things, its much the same for the second half. However, with the pitch chopped to pieces from the first half play being manly in the OWs half, this now plays into the away team’s hands. The youthful squad are now able to string a few passes around, leaving the 6s at a stand still in the mud and helpless to even get a tackle off. Time and time again OWs waltz around the 6s who are now struggling to keep upright, the pressure pays off as OW9s pull a goal back with a mazy run from inside their own half, skipping the challenges and dropping the shoulder, MQ is powerless as the ball nestles in the corner from a well-placed shot, 5-3
Nightmare 10 minutes to follow and many DOTD rewards to be thought about. First up, Joe! A up and under ball gives Joe all the time in the work to either control and clear, head or just get rid, sees him routed to the spot, not moving an inch as the OW9s forward strolls in, takes the ball and leave MQ helpless. 5-4
Similarly… and not to long after Joes debacle, MQ (for once) comes tearing off his line, bellowing ‘Keepers Ball’.. only for (on loan) Tom to decide that, that’s not good enough, and attempts to clear the danger, resulting in the pair, comically colliding without even touching the ball!! A gift that OWs wasn’t going to turn down as the ball is rolled into an empty net!! Talk about master of your own un-doing… 5-5
Time running out, a bit of luck is needed. This is in the form of ‘Lofty’, still battling in midfield, he wins a good 50/50, the ball over the top frees up Lewis to skin the full and centre back, keeper comes out late as Lewis places a hard shot towards the corner, the keeper gets a glove on it, but the power takes the ball goal bound for his second hattrick for the 6s and lead restored. 6-5
The goal seem to break the OW’s and the luck swings Merton’s way, OW9s chasing the game are exposed at the back, DG receives the ball and carries it forward, Lewis times his run well as DG flicks the ball over the defender, in turn, Lewis spots James making a late run in behind the full back, the play is complete as James sweat scissor volley from 14 yards or so is destined for the top corner, but somehow the keeper reads the flight and turns the shot around for a corner. Best move and save of the game
The resulting corner sees James once again pick out DG at the far post, still with a lot of ground to make up, beats his marker and launches a diving header which gives the keeper no chance as the ball tucks inside the post for his first hattrick for the 6s and a 7-5 lead
With minutes to go, the pitch absolutely smashed and cut to pieces, it all finishes. A 12 goal thriller, which OW9s done well to get back in the game, be it by the mercy of the 6s attempt to shot themselves in both feet, the visitors just run out luck at the wrong time, the 6s however, must learn to stay switched on for the whole game, far to often the second half has been there undoing.
The result pushes the 6s into 3rd, having played a game more than the teams below them, one which will be next weeks oppo, as we welcome City 3s to the hood, if the pitch can recover in time!
MOTM: El Cappo (DG) with his first hattrick as wells as 3 assists
DOTD: Close one between a number of players for the second half collapse, not to name names (as it will take too long!), but Joe for static defending (which was quite comical!) takes the award
Team: There was only one in the first half, unfortunately they left at half time and was replaced with some mad hatters!!
Merton 6s v Old Sals Reserves
With the manager back from a winter scouting trip in the alps, just in time for the 6s first home game in 2019. Mix start to the new year, with a loss and a win so far. Today’s test will be stern, with OSR fielding a very youthful, good passing team.
The 6s struggling with a few knocks and injuries, no Joe with a foot injury, Daban out with a knee injury, No Ty or Steve B means 6s are down to the bones. Niall K and Sam S answer the call and step in to help out
MQ in goal, and a back four of Kev, Tom, Mark, Steve H, midfield 3 of Phil, David and Ricky, leaving a forward line of Andy, Lewis and James E.
Game away with an early exchange, honours even for the opening 10 or so minutes, the pass and move of OSR is matched with a lot of aggression of the 6s, a few soft freekicks set the tone and the ref needs to speak to a few players.
First blood to OSR when a melee in the box results in Phil sliding to block a shot, the resulting rebound is then blasted at point blank range into the arm and a shouts for a penalty ensue, Ref has no doubt, even under protest that it’s a Pen, which is dispatched with MQ stranded on the line.
Rattled, 6s begin to put some passes together, however are open to the counter, OSR play some neat football, with pass and move through the middle and draw in the niggling fouls which breaks up the game. Making some headway, Lewis and David are both unlucky with shots from distant, but its still OSR that look the more threatening. In a break of play, Niall comes on for Phil whose struggling with a groin injury
OSR wins the ball outside there 18 yard, the exchange of passes bring them with in shooting range, a sideways pass sees a first time shot from 20 yards sail into the top corner, MQ had no chance.. 0-2
30 minutes gone and backs against the wall, the introduction of Niall brings some great long balls to the forward line, 6s are now making a bit of headway until Andy is judged to have given away a foul. Protesting his innocence only results in the ref sin binning for 10 minutes. OSR capitalise on this a stretch the score line further to 0-3 before halftime
Half time talk is a bit colourful, a change of Steve H for Sam S, sees Ricky drop back into right back, Sam slots into midfield with Niall, David now has the holding roll to go man to man.
The change up works well, Sam from KO takes the ball and slips pass 2 players, looking though he lost control, somehow drags the ball back and passes a further 2 players, now over stretching with his back to the goal, somehow regains control and slots james in for a 1v1 which ends just wide of the goal. DG snuffing out the link between the CAM and forward (and given away a few free kicks for being over enthusiastic with the tackles), Ricky at right back does his part, winning the 50/50s and playing out for the counter attack.
Finally the 6s are able to play the ball around, Ricky and Andrew down the right flank, bring in Lewis. The cross is deflected and Lewsi is there to nod in from close range, 1-3. A further change is needed, El cappo is blowing and makes way for Phil
Tails up, tackles in, bossing the game for the first time. Still end to end, but the 6s are clearly on top. Nails pulling the strings in the middle and Sam’s looking dangerous when on the ball, it’s like its glued to his foot!
Winning the battle in the middle is the key, Niall is feed the ball and he makes his way forward, the racking cross balls have been doing the damage, but this time from 35 yards (or so!) he unleash a left foot drive that catches the keeper flat footed and only able to watch as the ball sails top corner for goal of the day and brings the fight to 2-3
Still 20 minutes to go, 6s forced once again into another change, Ricky now is struggling with a hamstring, and Steve H is back on.
The game is now even, OSR are fighting their way back into the game, however, it’s a freekick to the 6s on their own 18 yard line, that shifts the power back to the oppo. Mark over passing the ball to a tired Kev, se’se the ball returned with interest and punished in the worse way, a few quick passes see MQ 1v1 and the scores increase to 2- 4
This takes the wind out the sails, Kev now struggling, swaps with DG, the changes are taking the toll as the formation is now suffering and OSR sucker punch the 6s and extend the lead 2-5.
Clock ticking down, 5 minutes to go, Niall is now in a heap in the corner with Cramp, removed from the game, Kev has to come back on and go up front. Phil now drops in a centre back, chappel left back, DG somewhere in the middle… it’s a bit of a miss mash affier. Still, with the confusion, Kev somehow finds a third wind and has a jolly up and finds himself in the box, takes the shot that the keeper pares, gets to the rebound which looks clearly over the line and is cleared by the defender, Ref waves play on, James manages to cross the ball back in to lewis who slots pass the stranded keeper and defender on the line, 3-5… and thw final kick of the game
Not a pretty game, but the woeful first half was the undoing of the 6s, coupled with the forced changes in the second half, Old Sal’s Res are worthy winners in the end, with some really good pass and move football
MOTM: A close vote with 4 people all on 1 vote and Ricky winging it as his now off to have a knee op and will be out for eh season, hoping he will make a full recovery and able to re-join us next season
DOTD: Although no one was nominated, it could have been Dobby for the sin bin, Chapple for the odd freekick pass to Kev, Phil for the pen! DG for saying at half time to stop giving away pointless free kicks and arguing with the ref… only to give away 2 free kicks and argue the with the ref in the opening minutes of the second half! Kev, for not running quick enough, MQ for the near post goal.. again, Chappell again for arguing with the ref about yellow cards and sin bins! Niall for asking if anyone has salt while in agony with cramp (everyone knows you only bring pepper to a game!!), and Daban for having a car that breaks down !!!!
City of London 3XI v Merton 6XI
The team agreed that this win is dedicated to by younger Brother Niall, passed away after a relatively short battle against Cancer on Thursday the 10th January 2019.
Niall played for a few years in the early 1980’s and was a regular in the first team.
After over 890 games this was the first visit to City of London although they are a new club in the league. There facilities are rather run down and the pitch didn’t look great either.
This week we had 12 players arrive eventually, Daban car started, however we were still missing El Capt. Dave and Mad Dog Burchell (all his training), we were also missing any obvious strikers. In discussions with Kev we decided to play a 4-3-3 system.
We took at bit of time to settle into the new line up and City of London were the more attacking and created a few long range chances. One chance did beat me from range however they were offside. They also hit the post and Mark Chappell managed to scramble away from the goal. The defence began to gain control and we did start to create half chances, particularly after bring Daban on for Dobson. We reached half time goalless.
After Kev & Phil’s half time talk, we came out stronger. We changed Steve H for Dobson. However Steve was soon back on as Daban was injured and had to good off.
We were more attacking, as the game opened up and our defence remained strong and the midfield of Phil, Ty and Steve H working hard. We final created a clear chance, however Phil was brought down just outside the box. There guy got lucky remaining on the pitch and over free kick came to nothing. It was their goalkeeper how was busier although they did have one shot for the edge of the box which I comfortable handled.
We contained to press and the City of London were giving away free Kicks which we finally capitalised with a deep free kick from the right knocked back across the crowded six yard box and James headed in from close range.
City of London final push didn’t really happen and apart on free kick from 20 Yards which I easily caught, they didn’t create anything. Inside the last 10 mInutes Phil final scored a simple header from another good corner from James. Phil also missed another header late on.
Once we scored are second the main aim was to keep a clean sheet, which we did comfortable.
This was a great team performance everybody working hard and playing well.
Niall this was for you RIP
MoM – Mark Chappell although it was close with vote for Tom Johnson & James Emery
DoD – None 6th player put a foot wrong. However City of London No 3 or an outside shout for Ed breaking protocol in tapping up players.
Team – Martin, Mark, Tom, Joe, Kevin, Andrew, Phil, Ricardo, Ty, James & Steve H
South Bank CUACO 7XI v Merton 6XI
Christmas & New Year break over, all looking to start football again, well if not snowboarding, shopping etc. didn’t get in the way. So from a team of 13 in midweek we finally turned up with the bare 11. Daban’s car not starting around 1.00pm.
We still had a reasonable line with youth up front and age at the back, however the pitch wasn’t going to help longish grass and heavy plus South Bank had 14 players.
We Start well and scored reasonable early with a good finish by Ricardo from inside the box. We continued to frustrate South Bank’s attack limiting them to long range efforts, whilst continuing to cause them problems but we did score again until nearly half time. Lewis continuing his fine scoring form.
Unfortunately we let our guard down just before half-time when we failed to clear full a free kick. So we go in at half time 2-1 up.
In the second half our efforts from the first half began to tell and the fact that South Bank had 3 sub meant our tired legs faced fresh legs and the number of free kick we (Ricardo) gave away told and South Bank scored 3 Goals including a OG.
Our attacking force also suffer with James having to good off for the last 10/15 minutes with an Achilles problem.
The good points were we didn’t stop running and trying to score right to the end, but without any luck. Our 10 men attacking line did mean that holes appeared at the back and enable Martin in goal to make a few saves.
The final result being 2-4 was disappointing but there were positives. The centre midfield pair of Ricardo & Phil worked tirelessly as did Lewis & James up front and the defence was solid for the most.
It was between Ricardo who seemingly wanting to get into the referee’s note book and Kevin get some early practice for the six Nation we giving away too many free kicks in dangerous areas.
MoM – Ricardo Inglesias with a mention to Tom Johnson
DoD – Daban (my car doesn’t Start) Babaker
Team – Martin, Steve, Tom, Joe, Kevin, Andrew, Phil, Ricardo, Matt, James & Lewis
Merton 6s v Old Parks 9s
After a good few days rain, an 8am pitch inspection is required to confirm that the SAL Cup 2nd round game can proceed, with an extensive walk around the park, the groundsman and his dog gives us the thumbs up and we confirm the 130pm ko… game on
Even as late as 1130am, the 6s went form 10 players to 14, but settle on 13 for the game. Without fail, MQ turns up with the gloves, this week he gets to look at the back of the heads of Steve B at LB, Ricky at RB, and Tom comes back to partner Joe at CB, a change in formation see 3 in midfield, left is David, Right is Ty and centre is left to Phil, with the an attacking 3 of James on the left, Daban on the right and Lewis straight down the middle
As clouds begin to accumulate in the distances, the games underway and OP9s are pressing from the start. 2 early corners are dealt with well and cleared, the formation sees Ty and David sit in a more holding roll with Phil just a bit further forward, although most of the play is OP9s but without any real threat. Joe and Tom deal with the OP9s CF well, but the big has a good few tricks up his bag and keeps them on their toes
On the half hour mark and honours even, it takes a piece of luck for the break through, from a OP9s goal kick, a straight forward ball that should have been dealt with between David and Ty, sees the OP’s speedy winger nip in and steel the ball, racing towards Joe and Tom, a quick 1-2 sees the ball run loose and a 50/50 challenge lets the ball bobble forward to the advancing MQ, unfortunately the OP9s striker managers to scuff a toe and make some luck as the ball changes direction and goes under the advancing dive of MQ, with just enough power to stop over the line and for a 0-1 lead
Not undeterred, the 6s are not playing bad, in fact, some of the play is remarkable good, composed around the back and towards the middle, with the forwards making good runs in behind the defence, it’s just the end product that’s missing with as well as a bit of luck
Still with minutes to half time, some good play from M6s, sees Phill roll the ball into DG path’s, who picks out a curling ball over the top and into the path of Lewes, albeit having to use all of his pace to get to the ball as the keeper changes his mind and back tracks, now clear on goal and keep in no man’s land, rifles a low shot to bring the scores level t 1-1
Halftime and a change in personal, Daban moves out to allow Matt to go right back and Ricky to go forward, Phil, who for once is not at the races (so he is human after all!) makes way for Ed on the left and DG to move centre
Takes a few minutes to adjust, back the game is back in full swing and end to end. To make things more interesting, the heavens opens up with a freezing cold shower which in turn bogs the pitch down. Still trying the passing game, the balls from both sides are largely over hit or taken by the wind, some of the tackles, although not malicious, are going in thick and fast. A corner swings over and a melee of players climb for the header, DG wins the battle but falls awkwardly. With ‘el cappo’ departing the game, Phil comes on in his place. Still with 20 minutes to go the game swings back again to end to end stuff, OP9s having the better share of the game, but M6s looking dangerous on the counter.
With minutes to go, and penalties looming, it seems both teams have settled for a draw, ref indicated a minute to play, OP9s with a chance shot from 30 yards and Phil’s there to head away, but with the driving rain and greasy conditions, the ball deflects and clips the out stretch hand, the ref ponders and finally blows up for a penalty, MQ divers the right way but is still short by a yard as the balls nestles in the net for 1-2
With just seconds M6s don’t even get a chance to have one last attacks as the ref brings the game to a close, a sad loss but in fairness a very good game played between 2 teams that like to pass and move
Next week we welcome HSBC to the Hood (pitch inspection pending!) for the AFA Cup game, a team that has scored 35 goals in 4 games at home yet has lost 3 of their last 4 away games….! ‘Interesting’
MOTM: Joe D, stepped up and played well and was by far the outstanding player for the day
DOTD: Phil, apart from apologising to the oppo after every (miss timed) tackle, the icing on the cake was the clearance header on to his hand… it was like his noggin was replace by a Dairylea Triangle!
Team: MQ, Ricky, Joe, Tom, Steve, Ty, DG ©, Phil, Dabs, Lewes, James, Matt, Ed
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)