When the parents signed up their boys for a lovely game of football at the start of the season little did they know it can essentially wipe out their whole Sunday. Today was one of those weeks whereby not only did we have a 12.30 kick off but we also had a long journey around the M25. When the journey time lasts as long as the actual match you know you’re in for the long hurl.

Whenever I usually visit Heathrow it would normally be to get some duty free and jet off into the sunshine. Not today this week we were here to continue our winning streak in light drizzle and with a backing soundtrack of aeroplane thrusters taking off every 60 seconds!

Typically when arriving at a airport you try and get there nice and early. Roy obviously wanted some new sunglasses and some aftershave as he was there a full hour before the official meet time.

As everyone rocked up with good punctuality we found a spot on the adjourning pitch to warm the boys up. Not the most inspiring warm up of the season but the boys looked engaged and ready to do the business.

With Self nominated sub this week was Big Dave who announced to the group “I am sub today because I missed training” the starting team picked itself. Seems the message has certainly hit home and the boys understand that consistency at training will be paid with minutes on the pitch.

We were ready for takeoff with a 2-2-2 formation today which initially looked like another bit of tactical genius. MOM from last week was Max who was ready to captain his crew.
The boys started as they have done for the last few weeks with good passing movement and a genuine desire to speed the play up and get forward.

A short corner was played quickly and a lovely teasing cross was met by a diving header from Faris at the back post. We won’t score many headers as a team this year so always nice to see a brave finish.
Faris and Lewis were causing some real problems in the first quarter(not sure why we played 4 quarters it should be two halves now) and their link up play is certainly improving. Max’s hands were looking safe, Percy and Ollie busy in the middle and Joe and Harry really in control and playing the ball nicely at the back.

1-0 quickly turned to 2-0 after a nice dribble by Lewis ricocheted into Faris who got a shot away which beat the goalkeeper and dribbled towards the back post which was smashed home emphatically with a power driver from all of 10 inches by Ollie!

We were in full throttle now playing superb football 2-0 then came 3-0 courtesy of a sublime free kick from Lewis. Bending, curling, dipping and powerful – all the ingredients for a superb free kick on show.

The whistle went for the first break and it was probably a bad thing for us as a team. The lads clearly thought they had completed their journey, coming off the pitch like a bunch of lads getting off the plane in Prague for a stag do! Parents very happy and Probably just a guilty as the kids in thinking this was a first class ticket to win town!
Maybe we were all too relaxed and maybe we all thought the hard work was done.
A warning was given by Roy and myself that 3-0 does not mean we are finished. We need to keep our discipline and work harder than we have ever worked and I concerns were well founded.
Bedfont came out much stronger clearly their coach had done a cabin check and highlighted some areas of improvement. They were a different team and we were too relaxed. The pressure was put on us straight away and they had put out their Top Guns. 3-1 half time.

The second half we looked like passengers for most of it with us really unable to ride out the turbulence. Bedfont were good value for their next 3 goals to take the lead in the game. No massive mistakes or errors just a genuinely good come back by the oppo whose coaches I must say were extremely professional, fair and encouraging to both sets of boys.

Soon after the final quarter started Lewis went on a darting run again and got a sublime shot away to level the game much to the sounds of relief from the parents behind the goal. It was the same sound you hear at an airport when a delayed flight gets called out for boarding.

As the clock ticked down either team could’ve nicked all 3 points with some good chances at both ends. Dave was extremely unlucky to not get on the scoresheet yet! But it is coming!
Percy took a few knocks today but was impressive with his work rate  and JT(Joe) was brilliant at the back and could’ve got a winner right at the end. Our fight back was good following going 4-3 down but the fact we conceded four goal in a row was a concern, although in all honestly the oppo worked very hard for it.

As we leave Heathrow we have nothing to declare at customs except Lewis and Joe were neck and neck for MOM but Lewis just pipped it by getting the all important equaliser.

Team: Max the cat, Harry ‘Tony Adams’ Bumstead, JT, Percy the worrier, Ol’s, Hazard, Faris the finisher.

Sub: Big Dave

Posted in Under 9s Reports