Kensington Dragons Reserves 3 v 5 British Airways Reserves
The Dragons suffered their first league defeat of the season against an experienced and at times physical BA side. The game almost did not go ahead as the original referee pulled out but the DofF stepped into the breach to officiate the game. The heavy conditions seemed to suit the BA’s route one football and it was from such a move that the first goal was scored on 15 minutes. A long ball to the BA centre forward resulted in an over zealous challenge from the Dragons centre half 30 yards out. The resulting free kick was drilled into the top left hand corner right where the keeper should have been standing after he set his wall.
The Dragons were soon level with an early contender for goal of the season. Andrew Scheck the Dragons centre forward controlled a ball on his chest 30 yards out, swivelled and hit an unstoppable volley beyond the despairing dive of the visitors’ goalkeeper to make it 1-1 after 20 minutes.
Instead of pushing on, the Dragons sat back and allowed BA to get into the game and their midfield was disjointed and BA began to exploit the spaces. The Dragons conceded another free kick on 30 minutes 10 yards in from the touch line. BA made their physical dominance tell and good movement from their players resulted in the free kick being headed in 1-2.
1-2 shortly became 1-3 when the Dragons failed to clear a corner and in the melee that ensued the BA forward poked home from 7 yards past the unsighted Dragons keeper.
Half time saw the score remain unchanged and the Dragons had a battle on their hands to preserve their unbeaten league record.
The second half saw the Dragon raise the tempo, the challenges were flying in thick and fast and the referee had his hands full keeping things in check. The controversial moment of the game came after 65 minutes, the Dragons skilled number 10 Andrea Levato was disposed by a very strong challenge (Dragons players argued it was 2 footed and dangerous), the Dragons stopped playing expecting a whistle, which never came and they shot into an unguarded net 1-4. Players from both sides argued the validity of the goal and the DofF was put in a predicament. Cool and calm he approached the BA skipper about the goal and the fact that the Dragons players stopped and asked for fair play to be instigated. He and BA duly obliged and from the restart they allowed Scheck to score unopposed 2-4.
The Dragons pushed hard for another goal but could not get that opening. On 80 minutes following a counter attack BA forced another free kick which the Dragons again defended badly and found themselves 2-5 down. The Dragons then enjoyed their best period of the game, BA tired and became over aggressive and the Dragons forced a number of good situations which they could not capitalise on until the 95th minute when they finally scored via former youth Dragon Hassan Osman.
Whilst disappointed with the result the Dragons are still in 2nd position in the league and very much involved in the race for the title. Although there is work to do on defending set pieces better, the result should not detract on what has been an excellent start to their campaign.