The strategy for today’s Cup game was ‘low expectations’. Which naturally comes for a team about to battle a side 2 divisions… no 4 divisions… wait no 6! divisions higher.
The team talk was hold the line, hold position… ‘We press as a Team!!’
Kick off and a few silky passes later sees Joe continue his fantasy points haul with his assist to self confessed hatric hero Khaj, who kicks off the scoring with his first within 10 mins playing time. (Spoiler alert: two and three never come)
The rest of the half see’s an incredible defensive display put on by the blue collar workers down back. Peppered by the oppositions front line, their commitment to maintaining the one goal advantage saw bodies unselfishly thrown at every challenge, a tactical friendly fire to win a free kick, intimidation tactics so lethal the opposing forwards thought better to clear the ball than shoot, and a YOU SHALL NOT PASS!! from George ‘Gandalf’ Apos!
Into the break and the one goal advantage is maintained. A strong and encouraging team talk from the captain, Tiffs go into the second proud no matter the final outcome… obviously not true but the sentiment was there.
Frustration levels from the opposition are high in the second. Screams of agony at every tackle echo across the grounds as they become desperate to win any advantage they can. Ref is having none of it.
Unlike the first half, control of the game swings in favour of the home team. The visitors need a miracle…
…and that miracle comes in the form of a classic Fifa goal. Squared in from the right wing just inside the box, a tap in for the central striker. Scores are level!
The next 20mins see’s some good play from both sides drawing the game into a bit of a stalemate. But soon the tired legs begin to kick in and the momentum continues to shift back in the visitors favour.
Desperately trying to keep the scores level captain Ben heroically strings together 3 incredible blocks right in front of goal. Unfortunately using his arm in the process. A stiff call from the ref and the penalty is awarded.
The lads from Essex show us the only way to do it and slot in the penalty. 2-1.
The final 15 minutes of the game see some chances created from the home side but non more noteworthy than Steve Leung’s.
At the risk of having to go into extra time though, Steve takes one for the teams and with pinpoint accuracy directs the shot high and wide. A collective sigh of relief from his teammates there.
Full time 2-1. An incredible performance from the home side which will surely give a confidence boost nice and early in the season!
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