Sandy Reserves: Match Report v Clifton Reserves

Competition League - Division Four
Result Clifton Reserves 4-1 Sandy Reserves
Date Saturday 15 January 2011
Kick Off 2.00pm

Match Report

The start of the New Year 2011 gave great optimism to Manager Graham Ward, with the allocation of a big squad to choose from. Although there were some significant players unavailable, the squad looked strong for Saturday’s away match.

I suppose the writing was on the wall with GW forgetting to bring the First Aid Kit, footballs and insufficient amount of shorts in the kit bag. The 4-3-2-1 formation was favoured by GW, allowing support for the defence and lone figure of Jay Pateman up front. Everybody seemed focused and wound up for this first game in 5 weeks. 

Playing against the wind - Clifton Reserves started the game brightly and moved the ball around confidently. Their long ball punt up field made it difficult for the Sandy defence, continually making it hard to allow the defence to settle. The midfield line up found it also difficult to string a number of passes together particularly on a heavy muddy pitch.

Very small glimpses from Dean Hill putting Jay Pateman clear – unfortunately blasting into the surrounding gardens of the housing estate. Out of nowhere – Clifton played the ball down the right side, where the player cut inside and calmly put the ball in the back of the net in the 35th minute. 

The half time team talk was difficult to pick out anything positive from a poor first half. The team look rusty after the Xmas break - GW encouraged and told the players to keep focused and push for an equaliser. In the 50th minute Charlie Seward  replaced Danny Hoole. Charlie swapped with Dave Harris who slotted into the right midfield area.

Clifton went 2 nil up, after a mix up with Phil Cooper and the defence. The ball was crossed in from the right wing into the 6 yard area. Cooper went to intercept - both defender and goalkeeper missed it, ending up with the ball in the back of the net. Brad Smith rallied the team trying to salvage something from this dour game. Marcus Tait replaced Brad Dennis in the 60th minute – Tait swapped with Dean Hill who went to left midfield.  Phil Cooper made amends by pulling off a couple of good saves in both halves of the game. 

Considering the amount of ability that was now playing within midfield, nobody really grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck. Small glimpses allowed a few hopeful chances, but nothing solid gave GW or the travelling support much excitement. The defence were put under a lot of pressure. A good solid performance from Dan Grinstead (MotM) supported by Matt Gedney and Reece Pope.

Grinstead  showed power and grit with some crunching tackles – something that the other players need to copy. The attacking Clifton forward line caused a mix up in the defence resulting in the referee awarding a penalty. Clifton Reserves made it 3-0 by scoring from the penalty kick. 

In the 65th minute, Marcus Tait scored a consolation wonder goal from 30 yards that could have been a cross. However, it looked good and sparked a bit of enthusiasm particularly during the celebration. Matt Baines replaced Adam Jakes who looked as if he’d run out of steam. The defence was reorganised by playing 3 at the back with Matt Baines sitting in front of them – Baines was specifically told to do a marking job and sit on the annoying No. 9 centre forward.

Clifton however scored another goal their fourth of the afternoon. The ball was crossed in from the left hand side allowing the totally unmarked No.9 to score from 6 yards. The discipline and concentration amongst several players was woeful and poor. 

The referee blew the final whistle with Clifton winning 4-1. The Team and GW were totally disappointed. GW asked questions in the dressing room afterwards and nobody could give suitable reasons why it all went wrong.

The real reason is – There are a number of players within the Team who don’t take full responsibility, are too quiet, lack concentration and hope that somebody else will get them out trouble. Several players were found out today – there is only so much that certain individuals can do to protect them. That is why we sit third from bottom in the league. Final score 1 - 4.

Match Stats

Starting Line-up:

12. Dean Hill (6)
15. Reece Pope (7)
17. Danny Hoole (5)
21. Adam Jakes (6)
22. Matt Gednay (7)
26. Brad Smith (6)
32. Jay Pateman (6)
33. Dan Grinstead (7)
34. Dave Harris (6)


15. Marcus Tait (6)
20. Matt Baines (6)
21. Charlie Seward (6)

Goal Scorers:

1 x Marcus Tait


Man of the Match:

33. Dan Grinstead


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