Merton 4s v South Bank 5s – 1st October 2011
The 4s seemed very relaxed and full of confidence prior to kick off this week. It was a great buzzing atmosphere but there is always a sneaking suspicion that it might all go horribly wrong with so much expectancy for the 3 points.
Any doubts about the game were quickly erased with some quality football being played around the South Bank midfield. A number of chances came and went but you could feel a goal was coming. To our surprise it came from a scramble after a great delivery from Dean from a corner. The ball bouncing off the crossbar, only for Tommy Savile to ‘nod’ the ball home (with his ear).
1-0 Merton and with the defence having a comfortable time of things, (who I must point out had a solid game), it looked like this was going to be a comfortable win for the 4s until a break from the SB centre midfielder saw him unchallenged until a last ditch tackle from Richard Prosper which was deemed a free kick on the edge of the box by the referee. A little delay and then a quality free kick from the SB player pegged us back to 1-1, no chance for Lee to save although he thought he should have done better.
Nearing the end of the half it looked like we may come into half time without our deserved lead but with about 5 minutes to go the ball fell to the feet of Tommy who looked up and dinked a lovely ball into the path of Thomas Taylor just inside the box who calmly slotted home into the opposite corner.
Half –Time 2-1 to Merton.
A couple of changes were made at half-time with Chris Barnes and Dean Porter coming on to bolster the midfield and give more of an aerial presence up front. Again the half started as we had finished the last, good passing and a few half chances before a lapse in concentration saw us concede a sloppy goal defending a very high line, 2-2!
Fortunately the attitude of the team has drastically improved over the weeks and without any problems we kicked off and stepped up the pace. A lovely chip from Dean found Dean Porter at the back stick but with the tight angle was only able to head onto the post for the keeper to catch the rebound easily. 30 minutes to go and it was time to release this week’s secret weapon – Nikko.
From the moment he stepped on the pitch he was troubling the left back with his fresh legs and ferocious pace! But for passing instead of shooting on a few occasions, he could have assisted a couple of goals early on but it wasn’t long before his first went in, a lovely central through ball from Thomas Taylor and with the defence splitting, Nikko just had to run in and slot past the keeper. 3-2
At 3-2 and with 15 minutes left we were looking to control the game and shut out the opposition. Nikko had other ideas though and picking the ball up just inside the SB half he ran past the defender and fired home from the edge of the box to give us a comfortable cushion. South Bank were pretty deflated once the fourth went in with such little time left and it just meant playing out the last few minutes to keep the unbeaten record going this season.
Top of the league and next week we encounter the first round of the SAL cup. Another trophy to play for this season that we have our eyes on!
If we can keep this positive mentality and determination up we will be a very hard team to beat this season … And who know what we can achieve!
MOM: Sayumg Pibulsonggra
Report by: Dean Porter