Travelled south to the leafy suburbs of Southgate
By Jo Hare
without captain Dan
Southgate Adelaide 3’s 0 v 2 S&S 4’s
On a bright and pleasant Saturday, so much different to the previous week, Shefford and Sandy Men’s 4s travelled south to the leafy suburbs of Southgate, determined to hold on to their slender lead at the top of Div 9SW.
A tactical decision from Captain Dan had him staying at home in order to move furniture into his new house in the hope that this would secure him Brownie points for the rest of the season. In his place at the back was a new secret weapon, the goalkeeper’s kit. Having got drenched in last weekend’s downpour it had festered for 7 days in the shed and had now ripened and was emitting an aroma that would deter the most hardened of detector dogs, the opposition forwards wouldn’t stand a chance. Bravely Prothero donned the offending articles and the game commenced.
S&S started the game well with a period of sustained pressure, punctuated by the occasional Adelaide breakaway which Maxted and Hall dealt with effectively. France and Barden Snr ruled the centre midfield though finding a breakthrough proved difficult much to the frustration of the returning duo of Joannou Jnr and the Zachman. On the 15 minute mark, France picked the ball up on the edge of the opposition ‘D’, skirted round one defender then took the ball around the ‘keeper and finished off the move with a reverse flick into the goal. Rather than subduing Adelaide this spurned them on forcing Woff and Clough to join in the game and start defending in earnest.
Half-time brought about talk of playing wider and keeping the ball, sound pieces of advice which went out of the window as soon as the second half started. Southgate Adelaide turned up the pressure forcing S&S under the cosh. A goal for Adelaide at this point would have made for an uncomfortable finish to the match but Prothero and the disgusting kit were equal to the challenge and the net was kept intact.
Gradually S&S came back into the game, Stone easing pressure by comfortably controlling clearances and bringing the wide players Barden Jnr and Murray-Clark into the game. 20 minutes into the second half S&S won their first short corner of the game. Stone pushed the ball out to Maxted who drilled it into the bottom right corner of the goal and then celebrated by getting a defender sent off. A second short corner followed soon after and this time Maxted flicked the ball towards goal. It hit a defender below the knee and the home team were awarded a free hit, just one of many decisions in the match which baffled both teams.
With the second goal in place the remaining time was played out quite comfortably. It wasn’t the best performance from the 4’s this season in terms of skill and passing play, but it did show that the team could grind out a result when things weren’t going their way. With this in mind maybe it was a good performance after all
Removals done the Captain will be welcomed back next week