WEEKEND WRAP | 26 JULY
It was another great day for the youth boys’ teams this week at the “fire pit” with Granville only taking some consolation in the last game of the day. The highlight was the 13 Boys who showed great touch in difficult conditions to record the biggest win of the day. The teams are starting to play some good football and the club is sitting in a healthy position on the Club Championship ladder. Not to shabby for our first season in NPL2.
13 BOYS (WON 4-0)
Once again, the team looked to continue the strong start to the season. On a very rainy and cold day, the boys were always looking to play football at every opportunity despite the oppositions kick and chase approach. With chances being wasted in the first half, we only took a 1-0 lead into the break.
It was more of the same in the second half, keep playing football and moving the ball quickly. The same opportunities presented came our way and with some tidy finishing we rounded out a well-deserved 4-0 win.
Player of the Week: Willem Robaard
Tireless effort each week on game day and training to find himself in great positions to create for his teammates or convert chances. A hat trick this week for his continued hard work.
14 BOYS (WON 2-1)
The mid-week decision to move the game from Granville to ‘the fire pit’ proved a master stroke as the rain belted down all Sunday, showing the virtues of Ian McLennan’s all weather capabilities…and saving us all a drive to Sydney on a wet and windy Sunday morning…but onto the football.
Taking on Granville Rage for the first time, the boys, like all the games since the season resumed, looked the side most likely for the bulk of the first half, however (like other weeks) technical dominance and good field position wasn’t able to be converted into goals with decision making and straying from the game plan, at times, letting them down. Possession needs to be valued, and to many easy turnovers allowed Granville use their physical game to create chances from long balls and fast breaks – their persistence and enthusiasm was rewarded late in the first half when their key striker was left unmarked, turning well to nail one past the diving flame keeper. Half time 0:1 to the Rage.
The half time break allowed the boys to be reminded of the game plan and reflect on how they needed to own and execute it! A more focused team emerged and while execution and decision making improved with 10 mins to go and still down a goal, it looked like the rain and missed opportunities could have extinguished the flame; however some intelligent lead up work allowed a flying Thomas Dimeski to run onto a good ball into the box, and with only a small angle to work with drilled it past the keeper on the inside post. One all. The goal lifted the boys who pushed hard, however with less than a minute to go, they maintained their cool, launching a late attacking raid from deep inside their half and with a blocked shot on goal deflected by the Rage keeper, the ensuing scramble in the box (which could well have been a penalty for the Flame) lead to Jackson Beniuk calmly slotting it in from close range to seal the victory.
Another hard fought win for the team, and even more pleasing was the maturity and smarter football displayed at pivotal moments in the second half. Positive signs for the weeks to come.
Player of the Week: Luca Radice-Jones
For showing his football intelligence in executing the game plan, and consistently excellent effort at training.
15 BOYS (WON 2-1)
As we welcomed Granville Rage to IMF for our RD 5 fixture, we knew straight from the KO it was going to be a hard day at the office with the Rage setting up a very compact and effective defensive block.
As the boys tried to break down the Rage it wasn’t until the 19th minute we found a way to get in behind them. It was a lofted cross from Bowen Spencer on the right that appeared to catch the Rage GK of guard resulting in a goal.
Our lead was short lived as the Rage equalised in the 30th minute after what appeared to be a slight lack of defensive concentration from the boys.
As playing conditions started to become worse in the second half the boys were working hard to find that winning goal and it was Kai Kubota in the 52nd minute who picked up a loose ball inside the box to drive home after a great cross from Nick Hailstone from the left.
The boys would go on to hold out a desperate Rage in the end and showed great resilience to defend that lead in some very testing conditions.
Player of the week: Jackson Meers
Jackson showed great hands in an outstanding performance in very testing conditions for a GK as well as his continued improvement at training and on match days. Well done Jackson.
16 BOYS (WON 2-1)
No match report provided
18 BOYS (LOST 1-2)
No match report provided