Sunday 27th September 2020
By Mark Harrington
HANDS, FACE, SPACE…
Team: Gary Rosslee, Gary McQueen, Jon Gasson (Capt), Robin Moody, Joe Champ, Dean Murphy, Si Davies, Paul Tanton, Matt Kerby, Mark Fisher, Steve Shippey,
Subs: Mark Harrington, James Rutter, Alan Fines, Chris Morris
Ref: Paul Parsons
Supporters: Mark Friend and the ever-present Chief Cheerleader Senior McQueen
So with Boris’s advice ringing in our ears, “Play football, don’t play football, play 5 a-side, stick to FIFA 20 indoors” we assembled for what is always a competitive match against strong opposition. Over the years these games have been tough battles and generally packed with goals at both ends and so both sets of players know it’s going to be the sort of game you want to play in and certainly no need for a rousing team talk from manager Damo prior to. This is for two reasons; no-one usually listens and secondly, more importantly, he’s a boring @@@@! Only joking and it was Damo’s tactical acumen (that’s a good thing Damo before you need to Google, it’s not some form of bet at William Hill) that helped win the day. So whilst I’m digging out my oldest buddy, we all have to acknowledge the significant part his tactics played in this game. Before any of you hacks jump in and say it, I don’t mean dropping himself! On that point, Damo has stood down for three weeks due to significant numbers but after having been sent off against Lads of the Village last time out at home, I make him first name down on the team sheet. Clearly you can see I’m struggling for material! In all seriousness, Damo has done the rota fairly to those who are here week in and week out and all have taken with good grace but time now is to put himself first.
So back to tactics and his masterstroke of playing 5 in midfield and asking Mark Fisher to just destroy. Our man from the government took his instructions like a man who had just received a memo from Priti Patel. Mark Fisher is the quiet man of the team, thank God we have one outside the pitch but unusually and for the second week running we have been quiet on it; however Mark protected the back four brilliantly along with Si Davies and the deep playing Matt Kerby. Perhaps the quietness is concentration but we cannot say it is affecting results but a bit more communication would not go amiss. Rangers are a team strong in midfield and play with a very large one up front. Not sure why Mrs H was so interested in this bit of the article but wants to come along for the re-match.
We went into this match with confidence and the new shirts that Santa delivered on Saturday. We looked the part but could we perform in our new Barcelona like non sponsored short sleeve shirts? Quite simply yes! What a performance from every man in the 15 and also referee Paul Parsons. Another fine whistling display from our man in black. I feel it worthy of not writing too many general words but due to the performance excelling, player by player analysis is more apt to describe the performance. This will come further down but just a word on the government's new logan in relation to the Young Vets…
HANDS…a big clap for every man on duty. Brilliant football coupled with commitment and desire. Also thanks to those that helped out our senior colleagues eg. Neil, Jay and Sean who assisted when numbers dwindled. Whilst they could not stop a 2-0 defeat, Neil was voted MOM. Also thanks to others who stood down and especially birthday boy Matti Wright. Happy birthday from us all Matti!
FACE…Whilst we were buoyed by the result and the performance, we sat in the clubhouse fearing the worst as Paul Tanton, who had not long before given us the lead, took a stray pass in the face and then could not see out of his right eye so off to A&E he went and then to Kings' eye specialist unit. Thankfully no more than bruising and a bit of bleeding. Thanks to Danny Saines for taking Paul to the PRUH and hopefully Tant will be back shortly. After speaking with Paul today he has thanked you all for the good wishes and said he felt like a princess. Diana he meant but pleased to hear his eyesight has returned and had absolutely nothing to do with the attractive doctor who attended to him. A lovely fella by all accounts and we thank him for his inspection of Tant although, why Tant had to strip is anyone’s guess for an eye problem.
SPACE…Absolutely none given to our opponents by the whole team but special praise to Capt Jon Gasson who gave the focal point of their attacks absolutely no room and almost made him a second skin over the new shirts!
So on the new shirts, arriving at the club I kind of felt like Santa although I bet he’s never been surrounded by 14 eager boys when unloading his sacks around the tree. Perhaps more market trader but the boot was swamped with them all wanting the correct size and number. A big thanks to all the lads who contributed as a unit to pay for the new uniform. So onto the individual comments and usually I believe in the collective but each one is worthy of mention especially, as Sunday took our four game total to four wins, 21 goals scored and only 2 conceded…
Gary Rosslee – Quick off his line, agile and collected corners at will. Distribution was excellent.
Gary McQueen – Returned after a foot injury. Solid and gave a much younger opponent no room on the wing.
Joe Champ – With only playing one up front his distribution was accurate and precise. Presented the right winger with no opportunities to progress.
Jon Gasson (Capt) – Man mountain. As well as defensive solidity he even produced a Cruyff turn on the left wing to help set up the opening goal. Joint Man of the Match.
Robin Moody – Nipped in to take the ball off the toes of the striker number times and distribution also excellent. Moved into midfield and out-muscled others to set up numerous chances. One excellent lay off presented Chris Morris with a chance that he was unable to finish.
Paul Tanton – Good start to the game and opened the scoring with an excellently placed right foot finish after a lay off by Shipps.
Mark Fisher – ‘The light destroyer’. Considerable barrier in front of the back 5. Unselfish play and covered when others raided forward. A real find this summer.
Si Davies – Calm, composed and one pass on the half volley out right to Deano will live long in the memory. Fabulous season so far and one back heel set up a goal for Kerbs.
Matt Kerby – Four superb goals and joint man of the match. Absolutely everywhere and a constant pest to the opposition. Lethal finishing.
Dean Murphy – Our play in the first half from midfield was exquisite and Deano plays a massive part. A real threat out wide and delivery second to none.
Steve Shippey – A hard task to play up alone but what a demonstration o how to do it. Movement, control, playing in others. It was one versus four at times and Shipps came out on top. Got a worthy goal to put us 3 to the good.
James Rutter – Replaced Gary McQueen and tight in the tackle and one superb diagonal ball set up Kerbs for his fourth. Another fine addition to the squad.
Alan Fines – Sadly Al pulled a hamstring at the end but carried on alone where Shipps had left off. One delightful bit of skill, chipping the keeper, would have been goal of the day but for the agility of the keeper.
Mark Harrington – Drove the manager to the ground so secured 60 minutes. Same time next week gaffa!
Chris Morris – Superb left foot. Replaced Tant and really caused havoc to the opposition defence. Great cross for one of Kerbs' goals but could have done better from Robin's pull back but we shall excuse that due to the other skills on show.
So it was a joint MOM for Kerbs and Jon as we really could not split them. Both worthy winners but equally no one would have moaned if anyone had been voted for such was the excellence of the team display.
Another tough fixture next week when the villages do battle. We welcome Lads of the Village to Farrow Fields and hopefully we can avenge the last minute 4-5 defeat of last year.
Have a super safe week all.
Man of the match: Matt Kerby and Jon Gasson