Sandy Reserves: Match Report v Dunton A

Competition League - Division Four
Result Sandy Reserves 3-2 Dunton A
Date Saturday 14 January 2012
Kick Off 2.00pm

Match Report

Sandy Reserves struggled during the week to put a side together, mainly due to the work commitments of several regular players. Manager Tony Gregory's selection skills were challenged further with more changes to his line up late on. Friday evening saw the withdrawl of Reece Stratton who was suffering with the dreaded Man Flu and then the text that no manager wants to receive on the morning of a game arrived from Sandy's Goalkeeper Phil Cooper, Phil had been called into work leaving the team without a recognised keeper.


Nathan Morris who has deputised previously was unavailable due to suffering with pneumonia, and Matt Hall was looking after his son so was unable to step in.


Manager Tony sent a text out to the team asking if anybody would cover the position, and there was an excellent response from the team. Matt Flynn was the first to offer his services and as such Tony put him inbetween the sticks. lots of players offered which shows the spirit of the current squad, but the best reply was from Adam Hales, as he said he would of but he was just to much of a fairy to do it!! Thanks Adam.


After  dilemmas with selection and now having only one sub, Sandy were ready to take on the visiting team, and local rivals Dunton A. The home side could see immediately that the visiting team had pulled three first team players into their squad as they looked to try and turn round their disappointing start to the season and upset Sandy's current good form.


Sandy started the game strongly playing some positive possession football right from the off, however after only 1 min and 57 seconds the game was stopped, as one of the opposition players had dislocated his knee cap. The ambulance crew were fantastic, keeping their patient calm and as comfortable as possible, and then the game was back under way after a 45 minute interval. Everyone at Sandy FC would like to send their best wishes to the player and hope he recovers soon.


Sandy restarted with passion and strength continuing the flowing football that they had initially started with as they pressured the back line of Dunton. The first team striker for Dunton was difficult to keep up with, but the determination shown by the Sandy defenders ensured that they kept him as quiet as possible with some strong challenges, ensuring that his influence on the game was minimal.


Matt Flynn the stand in keeper made some great saves and commanded his area as and when the attacks did come the home sides way. Despite his best efforts though Dunton opened the scoring as they had a one on one challange against Flynn and the Dunton forward finished well. The lead though was soon squashed as Jonnie Stratford pulled it back level. Folllowing the equaliser Sandy kept the attack up and won a corner. A perfect ball in from Brad Dennis was converted as Matt Baines headed home a great finish, Sandy now in front.


This unsettled the opposition and seemed to kickstart them back into action. They were pressing forwards attacking with a purpose, and it wasn't long before they pulled the scores level again as Sandy couldn't quite hold out to the halftime whistle. Shortly after Dunton equalised the half ended 2-2.


This game was either teams for the taking and the second half was played at the same pace and intensity as the first with both sides looking for the three points. Sandy were making most of the play though and Matt Baines put home the winning goal for Sandy from way out side the box with a terrific strike.


Sandys right wing was managed by Adam Hales and his exceptional play throughout the game earned him MOTM. Hales kept pushing the ball forward, looking to get to the byline before crossing in across the box, with each one dangerous. Unfortunately the forwards couldn't convert to make the scoreline more flattering.  


Anthony Roberts was brought onto the pitch covering the injured Jack Brown, and a slight shuffle around was needed putting Jonnie in the centre of midfield and Ryan Gregory as left back, allowing Roberts to push upfront. It was soon seen that this changed the game and Dunton A started to get more in the ascendency, so a shuffle was done again, Ryan G was pushed back into the middle, Jonnie back up front and Brad dropping into left back with Roberts on the left wing, this re-created the attacking pressure that Sandy had led the game with. With the game coming to an end and Dunton pushing forwards the back line worked well as a unit and stepped up keeping Dunton offside and away from Flynn in the Sandy goal.  


Sandy weathered the storm though and the final score 3-2 was in favour of the home side as they now step up to 8th position in the league table.

Match Stats

Starting Line-up:

5. Peter Rogan (9)
8. Chris Gregory (9)
14. Matt Flynn (10)
15. Reece Pope (9)
16. Adam Hales (10)
20. Matt Baines (9)
21. Jonny Stratford (9)
25. Jack Brown (9)
29. Ryan Burgess (9)
31. Ryan Gregory (9)


69. Anthony Roberts (7)

Goal Scorers:

2 x Matt Baines
1 x Jonny Stratford


Man of the Match:

16. Adam Hales


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