POSTED: May 13 2019 11:49:29. By Richard James
- STRETFORD ALBION V TORNADOES
Saturday 11th May, Highfield Close, KO 10am, League.
As John, the Streford Albion manager, said to me, "Welcome to Stretford Albion, for our monthly meeting".
And of course, he was right, we've played them a lot more than some of the other teams in our divisions. These are the vagaries of junior, non-competitive football! However, we can't moan when they're always good, well balanced fixtures.
What we can moan about though, was the state of the grass! Honestly, it was far too long and it meant that the boys really struggled to get a bit of momentum going.
This was especially true in the first half, when playing slightly uphill, we were really penned in.
Despite hardly getting many clear cut chances, we did manage to battle well in midfield and defensively we were really sound.
Dylan, Colin and Stewart, along with George, Eddie and Bailey did really well in keeping our opponents out. And at the other end Martin managed a couple of through balls to set up Logan and a high octane George with some half chances.
If the first half was mainly Stretford Albion then the second was mainly us.
A bit of over fussy refereeing meant we were awarded a free kick on the edge of our area. Unfortunately 1 or 2 of the boys panicked a bit and a sloppy ball across the penalty area lead to a goal for the Albion.
Despite this though, with Stewart now outfield and Logan deputising in nets, the Tornadoes really got a grip on the 2nd spell, with Stewart, Bailey, Martin and Eddie really getting some forward momentum going.
Undoubtedly, on balance, we created the more chances but the Albion 'keeper was in superb form. And although our equaliser, courtesy of Stewart, was scrappy, it was a fantastic example of piling on the pressure and getting rewarded for it.
A bit like the Monton Sports draw, the boys sensed blood and really turned the screw.
For me that was the most pleasing thing about this match. We wanted it more and on an awful pitch we were more than happy to roll up our sleeves and get stuck in.
Once again, good resilience was shown and there were some fantastic displays of strong effort and work rate. And although George, Stewart and Dylan were in the running for the MOTM award, this time Bailey picked it up for an excellent all round display.
Thankfully Stewart rescued something for us but, for the last ditch brilliant save from Logan, I think we'd have gone home with nothing.