Saturday 4th February 2006
So a three month gap and finally another point, although it should definitely have been 3. Having arrived at Rotherhithe''s ground early I was off to the Co-op for that last minute energy boost that is the essential Mars bar.
Anyway back to the match, our massive squad was at full stretch this week as multiple people dropped out through various reasons most noticeably the recently ever present Djan.
We were out on the pitch early for a quick inspection of what was a concrete surface similar to Astroturf although it was a beautifully flat pitch which should aid our slick passing and fluid movement (yeah who am I trying to kid?). In the 10 minutes we were out warming up Rob ‘sicknote’ Weekly managed to damage his glass knee again and found himself out of the starting line up which was as follows: in goal Stewart Copeland; defence Rod Stoyle, Mark Friend, myself and Ryan McGibbon right back; midfield of Jon Blay, Dan Head, Paul Dow and Gene Green, leaving Liam and George Hillman up front.
So to the match: Rotherhithe came into the game on the back of an 11-0 win against Ex Blues so this was not going to be an easy game. However, all started well. We looked good from early on pressing the opposition tight into their half and playing dangerous football around their box. The early decision by me and Dan to squash the game and play a high line looked to be paying off as a well disciplined defence caught the opposition offside repeatedly much to the opposition’s annoyance.
Continuing on from last week''s own goal competition Mark decided to give me another shot at scoring in my own goal a sweetly timed clearance from him cannoned off my eye/face and rattled the post for what could so easily have been my first goal in the red and yellow of Farnborough.
Now we come to what possibly was the turning point in the game. A lofted ball over the top saw their forward rushing clear into our box with only Stewart standing between him and a certain goal, well that was until he took an eternity to shoot giving me a chance to sneak in and tackle him burning the proverbial out of my back side in the process halting my sleep for the next four days through pain!!!!!
Now with that opportunity out of the way luck seemed to be on our side and with a lovely move starting from the back with Rod through Gene and then Liam saw George break clear and into the box where the move could only be ended through foul play and a penalty to us. For me Dan was the only person who could take it with his recent rich vain of goal scoring form and he didn’t disappoint slotting the ball calmly into the corner for a well deserved one nil lead!!
With plenty of time left in the half we pushed on pressing for another goal to make the game a bit easier for ourselves. At this stage everyone was playing well and with the determination I called for last week and I was proud to be playing with the whole team. Dan was doing an exceptional job closing down in midfield and really preventing the opposition getting near our goal.
So to the second half… the half began a bit shaky for us with the opposition pressing on us again however, our high line was working well keeping the opposition away from our goal. However, nobody is perfect and Rotherhithe were to break through twice in the box both chances being squandered including an excellent intervention by Stewart in goal at the feet of the Rotherhithe striker.
Meanwhile going forward we looked strong and despite a few too many flicks Liam got himself a good couple of chances. The first was a break away created by himself and Dan which saw Liam one on one with the keeper only to hit the ball down the keeper''s throat. Next time mate you’ll score I’m sure of that!! Maybe the introduction of George’s boots will see to that!! Liam''s second chance was created by an excellent run from George on the flank beating his man and putting a dangerous ball in between the keeper and Liam. Liam unlucky on this occasion as the ball must have bobbled for him to put it over!!
At this stage possibly the inevitable happened. A dangerous break down the left saw their winger hit the touchline and put a dangerous ball in the box narrowly escaping Stewart''s clutches and being headed in at the back post for one all. At this stage a lot of heads dropped and we looked shaken and in danger of losing this game but I was determined not to let it happen this week.
Once again we pressed back with Jon who’d had an all action game out on the right getting forward and back doing a good job coming into the middle to help defend and George heading back out to the right wing. This shored us up again and put us back in the ascendancy for the last ten minutes which was relatively uneventful other than a cynical challenge from me on their striker preventing a certain goal and damaging myself in the process - probably justice I feel.
So the game ended. A point in the bag after such a barren run should have left us satisfied however, I felt truly gutted maybe more so than last week and that has to be a sign in a game on paper we should have lost to be disappointed with a point is a start and next week I feel we can turnover AFC Bromley and kick start the second half of the season pushing ourselves away from what could be the drop zone.
Look forward to seeing you all Saturday - let''s make sure we win!! Think the main thing I wanna see from everyone this week is effort and I’m sure you won’t disappoint me good effort this week one better next week though.