Match Report: Moor Mead Cosmos vs Teddington Athletic Jets
It was a glorious morning for the early kick-off, although the many home fans seemed a little subdued following the previous night's gala charity event. The players were bright eyed and bushy tailed however, eagerly anticipating the challenge of taking on their local rivals.
The backroom staff had imported some exotic warm-up exercises, presumably picked up during the summer's European scouting missions: les fermiers et les renards was lifted straight from PSG's Camp des Loges and the agility exercise had the desired effect. Cosmos roared out of the traps, in stark contrast to the traditional pedestrian start.
The team seemed perfectly balanced and Teddy were hit with shock and awe, Moormead maybe further encouraged by facing a team the same size as themselves for the first time in awhile. Defence and goalie had little to do, as Kiran controlled midfield, with Harry and Vinnie bombing down the wings. Tye and Tom up front were also causing havoc amidst the Teddington defence, with Cosmos feeling like they had four up front at times.
The goal was destined to arrive, with a few near misses and the Teddy keeper relying on the far post to keep out Vinnie's driven shot to the corner. However, another blistering run down the right resulted with Harry's curling shot ballooning the net as it sailed into the top left corner.
Cosmos maintained the pressure and some lovely build up play saw Tye provide the assist for the second, clinically taken by Tom. 2-0 Cosmos and the home support were confident that in this form, it was only a matter of time before they had a third.
But Teddy played themselves back into the game and started to hit their stride. James was marshalling the defence, but Teddington were proving a constant threat now, with Max and Leo having to throw themselves in on a regular basis and Kyle's gloves feeling the heat.
The change in control had been threatening it for some time and eventually the goal came, all credit to Teddington as it was taken well and Cosmos were losing their shape and limped into halftime.
Teddington started strong in the second half and Cosmos still couldn't find their shape. The home team had tired legs and were also being overrun in midfield, giving away too much space between the attack and defence. Adam was now on but needing to fight a brave rear guard action as wave after wave of pressure came from Teddington. Jamie tried hard to find an outlet but Cosmos were restricted to only the very occasional counter attack and found themselves pegged back after a glancing header from Teddy corner finally made it 2-2.
Just as Cosmos had taken their foot off the gas, Teddington allowed the home team to come back into it and against the run of play Cosmos put together a break down the right, an inviting ball came in from the wing but somehow the ball flew wide, players and fans all have heads in hands.
With some confidence back and Olly adding some much needed bite, Cosmos fought their way back a bit and another break saw the home side come so close. Breaking again, Vinnie appeared nailed on to bag the winner, but a physically challenge knocked him off the ball and to the ground. A huge penalty appeal from the home side is turned away by a disinterested ref. Unfortunately VAR has yet to make it to Marble Hill...
Final score 2-2 and Cosmos extend their unbeaten streak after a fine performance and a solid finish after a distinct wobble for extended periods during the middle of the game.