This week saw our first competitive derby with the visit of Dunmow Rhodes Lions, and what a derby this was. Two teams that wanted to be on top and boy were there some challenges and passion demonstrated by two evenly matched Dunmow teams.
Rhodes started the better after some early passing and went a couple of goals up. Pleasingly our Vikings didn't let the score worry them, and following a mis timed tackle on Angus, he stepped up and placed a lovely long range free kick into the bottom corner. The game continued with pace, William and Jess harrying the opposition, with Angus and Henry sweeping up any gaps that appeared. I particularly loved seeing Angus's composure on the ball, with Angus and Henry making themselves available from goal kicks.
Dispite some good passing and spreading the ball out, Rhodes went further ahead with a good goal. Vikings picked up a gear and William got one back from the penalty spot after a clear handball. Joseph, now on alongside Maksim, was very unfortunate early on, seeing a shot come back off the post. Not stopping there, and dispite some great efforts that just missed earlier, William brought us level with a great bit of play, Joseph recovering a lost ball and unselfishly cutting back for William to tap in. Wonderful play from Joseph.
The game was now red hot and tackles were flying in, including some strong challenges on Josh in goal who stood firm and stopped a few well placed shots well. Angus, Jess & Henry were relishing the play in the middle of the park, all giving as much as they received and both teams battling with conviction. Break outs were hard to get and space was a premium. Rhodes went back in the lead but this was quickly nulifilled by what was a proper smash into the roof of the net from outside the box from Angus , which was exquisite and complemented his strong defensive role today. Rhodes again took the lead and in response William placed a lovely lob into the onion bag , leaving their goalie with no chance. Maksim was constantly looking for space to get onto the ball from our attacks, but unusually no goal this week for him. However, he was alert to getting back and supporting.
We then went in front with a wonderful free kick from Joseph to see Vikings lead. However, Rhodes again scored a peach into the top corner which was unstoppable. They celebrated loudly for that goal recognising the value in going all square again. This must have inspired us more as we went back into the lead with William returning the favour to Joseph and passing unselfishly in front of goal. This was set up by Josh saving a 1-2-1 with the ball coming off him into Williams path. Joseph then completed his hat trick, which was well deserved giving us the win that was hard earnt against a strong and good passing Rhodes team. 5th win on the bounce for us and well deserved.