A short walk up to the MK Sport Central facility gave us a suitable pitch for this fixture after all the rain we have been experiencing. Although Ashfold fielded just the 2 teams for 7 aside U9, we made use of the home setting to give all the boys from U8 & U9 an opportunity to have a game – we tried to keep all the U9 boys together as one team and also allow the U8’s a chance to play together as an A team. The Grove where met with some overcast conditions at the start of this fixture and before the match a lot was spoken around utilising space and not crowding around the ball!
The Grove U8
This was always going to be a difficult fixture, playing against the year above, but that never phased any of the boys and they set to the task busily. Ashfold had a clear understanding of space and they strung many passes together which helped them to weave their way around our players and into good attacking positions. Their first goal was an absolute corker that swung across the goal from the left and bounced in perfectly from the upright; the young lad who struck it went on to score most of Ashfold’s goals and for the most part was a constant threat in attack.
Although we managed to improve our general play and passing as the game progressed, we still tended to flock around the ball and hang back too much in defence; which did mean Oliver and William found themselves in the line of fire as goalkeepers. By halftime we were 5 nil down and had only been into their goal area twice with breakaway runs– for one of those chances Jacob got off a great shot with his left foot and was unfortunate to not get us on the scoreboard. Matthew miss queued the second one in front of the goal which was also a great opportunity. The second half went a lot better and we visited their half many times. Sadly, our passes didn’t have enough power behind them and Ashfold easily read and intercepted them. Moving Koseunti into defence significantly improved the game because he was strong on his feet and able to clear the ball away adequately, meaning we only gave away a single goal.
As I said, we did improve and start to see where we should be getting the ball to, but in all honesty it didn’t seem like we were able to compete as a “football team” – more like a group of enthusiastic and talented individuals eager to kick a ball around.
The Grove 'A': 0 Ashfold School 'A': 6 Man of the Match: Jacob Okwuadigbo
The Grove U8/9
For the majority of the first half the boys where doing their fair share of defending, some fantastic saves Aaron Sonander keeping the scoreline at 0-0. The Grove did manage to counter-attack a number of times off the back of Arjan and Freddie Lancaster finding some space with some key passes to allow Dimitri to make a break. The game swung back and forth with both sides unable to break the deadlock. A brief discussion at half time to remember their positions and to look for the pass set the tone for a good second half. It looked as if the second half was going to be a mirror image of the first, however, as time went on it was fitness levels that started to be the difference. The introduction of … linking up well with Dimitri, Freddie and Arjun was starting to wear Ashfold down. A high press in the opposition half allowed The Grove to break away twice with Arjun finishing well both times.
Overall the fixture went very well with the boys winning in the correct manner and being humble hosts. There was clear progression through the match with all who took part trying to implement what was spoken around.
Man of the Match - Arjun
The Grove 'B': 2 A. Chawla (2) Ashfold School 'B': 0 Man of the Match:Arjun Chawla
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Last modified on Thursday, 05 March 2020 16:07