Variable winter weather has seen the Dragons battle on through various vicissitudes laced with triumphs as we hurtle towards the Christmas break:
The Girls continue to train on Fridays from 5.30 – 7pm on the Westway main pitch – all girls from 9 years old welcome, just turn up.
The Firsts beat Brentham 3-2 away in the Cup. Brentham had tried to call off the game but were thwarted by the Dragons Secretary reminding Brentham that the decision could only be made on the day. The pitch passed inspection and the game duly kicked off. The opening ten minutes was one way traffic from the focused Dragons which lead to a moment of madness from Brentham’s goalie who upended the Dragon striker with the ball nowhere in sight. The referee had no alternative but to award a penalty which was duly converted. The half continued in much the same fashion when out of nowhere Brentham countered to equalise. Another reminder that chances shouldn’t be taken for granted just taken. This jolt did not de-rail the Dragons and a quick inter-play between forwards gave them a second goal. The tempo remained high and a clever Dragon through ball ended with the rushing keeper being lobbed to leave the Dragons 3-1 up at the break. The second half failed to reach similar heights with Brentham being kept at arms length and Dragons wasteful in possession. Brentham did score a consolation goal but the Dragons are through to the last eight.
The Reserves beat Shepperton 4-1 in extra time in the Middlesex Cup quarter final. The Dragons began poorly with the back four struggling although going forward was more positive. After 25 minutes sloppy play saw Shepperton nip in and the Dragons centre back slicing him down for a converted Brentham penalty. Testing times for the Dragons – it was about getting to half time and re-organising. The formation was switched to 4-4-2 and it was a different proposition from the restart. Shepperton knew they were now in danger and began to break up the game with the help of the referee blowing for the slightest touch on any player. Half chances came and went and with 15 minutes left the Dragons appealed for a penalty to equalise. It was into Extra Time and a dreadful Shepperton foul gave the Dragons another penalty and a 2-1 lead. Three minutes later yet another penalty gave the Dragons another goal. Shepperton were beaten and then killed off any chances of a revival by gaining 2 red cards. Another foul lead to yet another Dragons penalty and a 4-1 win to reach the semi final in February.
The U17’s lost 1-3 to Pinnstars at Birbeck in a disappointing day for the Dragons who lead 1-0 at half time. A combination of a lack of concentration in the second half with Pinnstars coming out much more aggressively, left the final score at 1-3 to give Pinnstars an unexpected win.
The U15’s drew 2-2 with Ruislip Town Away. Through an unusual combination of usual circumstances Dragons had not played a match for over a month and it showed. It was not long before two superb Dragons crosses were deftly converted to goals and the Dragons were 2-0 up. Frustratingly Ruislip had a very determined side buttressed by a superb goalie and the Dragons lack of match sharpness lead to no more goals. Ruislip had no such inhibitions and crept their way back to 2-2 which is where it irritatingly stayed. Still the U15’s remain undefeated in the League.
The U14 Eagles beat Totteridge 5-1 away. To quote the lyrical Dragons Manager “Sorrow in Southall had left us cowed like crouching tigers. On Sunday we pounced back as Hendon Dragons. Playing at last beneath the Wembley arch (rising, just, to the darkening South) we were made to work for our victory. This was a Totteridge side transformed from the one crushed so elegantly at St Mark’s in October. Of some nine fine first-half Eagles strikes, only one found the net, and that was quickly cancelled out by a penalty inspired by the patron saint of falling timber, Arsenal’s St Santi Cazorla. The second half brought little relief on a day of graft and toil. And as the driving wind emptied the Hendon playing fields of light and people and possibly hope, the Dragons management began to fear the worst. But then a rebound nicked, a rasping strike and a final flash of brilliance saw a decent score racked up in time for the final whistle. 1-5 to us and every goal wrestled from the Totteridge mud to send us into the Christmas break more relieved than euphoric. After that very un-peaceful YAC Ealing, these Eagles deserve to take it easy. Until the New Year, then…”
The U14 Nighthawks had not game
The U13’s lost 1-3 to Yeading Wanderers at Wormwood Scrubbs. If this had been a boxing match the fight would have been stopped by half-time. The Dragons put up an outstanding half of football dominating possession and territory; the midfield and defenders won the ball at will and the attack always looked dangerous to give the Dragons a well-deserved lead. Yeading were on the ropes but the Dragons could not deliver a killer second goal which proved to be their undoing as Yeading equalised in the last minute before the break. The second half was more even with chances being created at both ends. The Dragons however eventually started to tire on the heavy pitch and Yeading took the lead. The game was then held up for several minutes as the Dragons centre half took a blow to the nose from the ball and, despite valiantly trying to carry on, had to leave the pitch with a bleeding nose. The remaining 10 Dragons were now out on their feet and Yeading counter attacked with fresh substitutes to score their 3rd. The Dragons tried to respond and created a couple of chances but had to settle for an undeserved loss. But like Rocky they look forward to the re-match
The U11’s beat Watling 5-3 at Wormwood Scrubbs. A nearly full Dragons squad started with a team photograph and looked intimidating from the start. After fifteen minutes they were leading 2 – 0, from two really well executed goals created from slick passing anchored by strong defending. The Dragons were playing their best football of the season and after a robust team talk at half time the second half was under way. The Dragons were soon winning 3–0 which lead inevitably to a false sense of security and a lack of concentration allowed Watling to apply the pressure to sneak two goals back. The Dragons coaches made two well-timed substitutions which resulted in a debut performance and a goal. The Dragons scored again just before the final whistle to end a 5–3 well deserved victory.