Nutfield Youth 2 - Moor Mead Athletic 2 (Nutfield win 3-2 on pens).
A really good contest on a pudding of a pitch. Athletic started slowly and it looked like Nutfield would be too strong for us. They passed the ball well and were always a threat from crosses and corners.
Liam, back from concussion, performed bravely in goal and made couple of good saves. Nutfield scored first though, (from a corner that we failed to clear) and they narrowly missed on a couple of other occasions (0-1)
This kind of woke us up a bit and we gradually worked our way back into the game. We started passing the ball nicely despite the surface and Ronnie was unlucky not to score when his shot hit the post... but luckily it fell to ALEX who was first to react and prodded the ball home to equalise (1-1).
We gained confidence from that and were the stronger team. Soon after, RONNIE put pressure on their defence to force an error, won the ball and steered the ball past the goalkeeper for a great individual goal (2-1). Half-time.
The second half continued in much the same vein. Nathan pulled the strings in midfield and combined well with Sam and Dan down the right on numerous occasions. Barney and Roshan tested the keeper, too, with shots coming in from the left. Unfortunately we gave away a sloppy corner and Nutfield scored again (2-2).
With 15 mins to go, both sides were running out of puff - but our back line of Nico, Brendan and Giulio held firm and Athletic seemed to be the more likely team to score. But sadly we couldn't turn possession into goals. And then we lost on pens.....enough said.
Very unlucky indeed but Athletic can take heart from a really strong team performance. They certainly gave it everything on a difficult, strength-sapping surface and cannot be faulted for their team spirit and all- round hard work.
For the neutral fan it was a humdinger of a cup tie. Both teams had chances throughout the match as it ebbed and flowed one way and then the other. It was played in an excellent spirit with both sides tackling hard but fair and the referee controlled the game very well. Congratulations to everyone involved in what was a very good morning’