1 - Charlie W 7 - Cameron M
4 - Tom A 9 - Zach L
5 - Leo M 10 - Charlie T
6 - Harry H 11 - Sam M
The team turned up to the great 3G pitch at Moulsham school ready for the battle they always get against Galleywood Falcons, their intended opponents. With the match due to kick off at 11:15, preparation time was short as the previous matches were still going on at 11am.
As soon as a pitch was clear we led the lads out to start their warm-up routines. I went over to say hello to the opposition manager and I asked him if they were due to play Dunmow UNITED, he said yes and informed me that Galleywood only had six players as they had a number of injuries so we obviously agreed to play with six to keep the game even.
The short warm-up routine showed the lads were ready and focused so we sat the team down to explain the changes. Playing with six would see Charlie W in goal, Leo M and Sam M start at the back with a midfield trio of Zach L, Cameron M and birthday captain Charlie T in an attacking role.
Harry H and Tom A started the game on the bench ready to come into the action when called upon. Louis F (sicknote) was recovering from his latest bout of injury and would miss the game. Get well soon Louis and hopefully your recent bad luck with injuries is behind you.
The match got underway.
At the start of the contest there looked to be a really gulf in class between the two teams with the Piranhas attack looking absolutely devastating. Galleywood simply couldn’t keep up with the pace and movement of the boys in orange, they really looked in the mood. The long pitch helped the boys as they had time and space to play their football.
The energy levels to get back was evident and the defensive line of Sam M and Leo M were looking comfortable. Charlie W was efficient as ever in goal.
Dunmow’s attacking dominance soon got them the reward they deserved when a run and shot from Charlie T was well saved. Zach L produced a well-controlled strike from the rebound into the corner of the net.
Harry H and Tom A came into the game seamlessly and before long the Piranhas had their second. A good bit of work from Harry H saw his pass put Charlie T into space. Charlie coolly slotted the ball past the on-rushing goalkeeper.
Tom A was confidently picking the ball up from Charlie W and moving it out from defence and Sam M looked assured as his defensive partner. Galleywood inevitably started to come back into the game and managed a strike of their own which seemed to invigorate them.
The Piranhas finished the half strongly though and a wonderful pass from Charlie T through the eye of a needle put Cameron M clean through. Cameron showed great composure to get round the keeper but rushed his shot and it went wide. Whilst everyone else had stopped, Harry H kept the ball alive and had a shot which rebounded to Cameron M for him to get the goal his first effort deserved.
Half time came and the performance had been brilliant. We re-emphasised the need to concentrate right until the end of the match. Charlie T went in goal and Charlie W picked up the attacking midfield role with the instruction of just being a pest!
The second half saw Galleywood really come out fighting, they must have had the hairdryer treatment from their manager at half time because they looked a different team. All of a sudden the back line of Sam M, Leo M and Tom A were getting tested.
A test they were passing and with the counter attacking threat it was the team in orange that scored the next goal. Charlie W was battling hard and forced a ball through to Cameron M who finished for his second of the game.
Galleywood continued to press and the tireless effort of Zach L getting up and down the pitch was supporting the defenders keeping them out. Harry H was trying to get his foot on the ball and Charlie W was keeping the defender on his toes.
Charlie T had a couple of routine saves to make before Galleywood started to get their reward with a couple of goals.
Galleywood were awarded a corner which was well delivered. A bullet header from the striker was heading for the top corner when Charlie T flung up a strong hand and pushed it over the bar - a great save.The resulting corner saw Charlie push another header onto the crossbar. Really good keeping!
Towards the end of the game, the team were starting to get caught too high up the pitch instead of protecting their lead and Galleywood capitalised with a couple of late goals.
Charlie T earned MotM today for his influential performance in the 1st half and two worldy saves in the 2nd. Thanks as always to the travelling Piranhas faithful. Always acting with dignity despite what they come up against!
So all seems fairly normal and straightforward? After the game I was informed by Galleywood that we had played against the wrong team! We had played the Eagles not the Falcons! The Falcons had played against Dunmow Rhodes on the pitch next to us at the same time!!
The Eagles play in the top division so the result cannot be submitted and the match is void, however, it does put the performance of the team into perspective. For the second time this season, not only have we matched a team from the top division, we have positively out-payed them in parts. Great progress.
Well done lads!
Next match - Home v Valley Green Hotspurs - 11am KO.