1 - Charlie W 7 - Cameron M
3 - Louis F 9 - Zach L
4 - Tom A 10 - Charlie T
5 - Leo M 11 - Sam M
6 - Harry H
The boys looked sharp and keen in the warm up and were all focused and listening to both Christian and myself, it was obvious that after the short break they were all keen to play. Zach L was captain due to his effort and focus in the warm up exercises.
The referee did the coin toss and the Tigers kicked off, the first 10 minutes started well for the Piranhas with some good movement and quick passing, with the defence of Leo M and Tom A looking as strong as ever with them sweeping up everything that came their way.
The midfield of Zach L, Harry H and Cam M looking strong leading to a number of balls to Charlie T upfront giving him the opportunity to try and score. Unfortunately the Tigers keeper was on inspired form and let nothing past much to the Piranhas frustration.
The match was looking very even as the Tigers had a couple of shots on goal but the ever vigilant Charlie W had everything covered.
Unfortunately a rare miscommunication in defence led to a pass across our box which the Tigers striker was quick to latch on to and scored the opening goal.
Sam M then came in to defence and Louis F started in central midfield, however within a few minutes Louis F suffered another knee injury and couldn't carry on. Get well soon Louis!
This then seemed to upset the boys and this let the Tigers through to score their next goal. The boys were visibly down and their heads dropped and their football started to lose its shape before the half time whistle blew.
The boys came in for the team talk dejected and frustrated that they were behind and that every chance they had had on goal had been thwarted. Christian, myself and captain Zach L tried to get them motivated and lift them, we told them at only 2 goals down they still had a chance if they continued to play the football the way they had played at the start of the match.
For the second half Charlie T went in to goal with Charlie W coming out on the left, the whistle blew and the Tigers came out strong and scored another goal early on. Charlie T got a hand to the ball but couldn't do anything to stop it, very unlucky.
Being further behind now we expected the boys to be even more down, but the complete opposite happened with the boys rallying together and determined to come back fighting.
Zach L started the comeback with very determined and tireless play to win the ball, progressing down the right so he could pass to Harry H in the middle who then flicked the ball on to Cam M who smashed the ball past the keeper for a well deserved goal. Some great team play!
The Tigers came back again but the strong and organised defensive team of Leo M, Sam M and Tom A and the determined tracking back from Charlie W kept them at bay.
The boys now had their tails up and were battling hard with most of the action being in the Tigers half of the pitch, Charlie W showing some real skill managed to get round a couple of Tigers players to play a lovely pass to Cam M who turned and coolly poked the ball past the keeper.
The boys could sense the game had swung their way and that the Tigers were on the ropes and they continued to give it everything in the last 10 minutes. Charlie T looked strong in goal but had nothing coming his way to trouble him.
The team never gave up and further strikes from Cam M, Harry H, Charlie W and Zach L were all saved by the inspired Tigers keeper. Christian and I joked that it was the bright pink kit that he was wearing that was putting our players off!
Ultimately time ran out for the Piranhas before they could find that elusive equaliser, but they all gave 100% and more importantly where previously they have let games slip in the last 15 minutes they all kept going and battled to the end. They all showed real courage coming from behind to come back so strongly and nearly equalise. Christian and I were very proud of what they achieved.
Man of the match was Zach L for his strength and determination that rallied the boys to fight back - a true Captains performance.
With Phil now back it should be business as usual next weekend, thanks to Christian for his help with the boys and to Darren for his great refereeing allowing the game to flow. Thanks also to all the supporters and thanks to the boys for putting up with me!