Old Actionians 2 vs 3 Kensington Dragons U14A
We don’t like small pitches, we don’t like muddy pitches, we don’t like the rain, so it was with trepidation that the team trooped over Gunnersbury Park to find 2 out of the 3 greeting us (the Rain at least held off until the second half).
The first part of the game was congested with OA playing 5 at the back and we found it hard to get into any sort rhythm. Our midfielder (Shaq) was our most dangerous player with some nice jinking runs into their box but was just unable to get off a shot as he was closed down. We looked susceptible to the counter-attack and this is how we fell behind as a through ball found an OA striker who timed his run to perfection and got in behind our defence and applied the finish. At this point we were struggling defensively. We looked vulnerable and we were running out of ideas going forward and players were becoming frustrated.
At half time our Coach (Dean) left the team with no doubt this performance was not up to the standard and changed formation to 3-2-3-2 (from 4-3-3) and asked the team to play more direct and at a higher tempo. The team responded and immediately put OA under pressure pinning them back in their half and we duly equalised as Michael drove in from right midfield and finished well. We took the lead after we won a succession of corners and a chance was converted by our striker (Emmanuel). We looked more composed in defence and we were looking well on course for the win as our centre back (Noah) playing up front hit a screamer of a shot from the edge of the area which whistled into the top corner. However we relaxed and got caught out when a quickly taken free kick found its way into our net whilst the Dragons defense was still being organised. The Dragons withstood the last assaults OA mustered with some solid defending by Ilayas and Dean.