LCWM45 vs Clarke Rd 16/08/2008

Clarke Rd 5, Lane Cove West 0

 

16 August 2008, Mowbray

 

Our last few weeks had shown steady improvement after the 7-0 hammering by Northbridge A. Today the score looks bad again, but it was really just one short period of the second half that let us down.

 

Clarke Rd won the comp last week. They’d scored 5 or 6 goals in 7 games. They’d won 15 games, drawn none, and lost just two. And you can see why they’re successful. Big, fit, quite skillful; and more than a touch of mongrel.

 

So we started with the defensive plan, and it worked well in the first half. Yes they had a lot of possession and moved up the field smartly. But we mostly restricted them to long-range shots, few of which really threatened.

 

Before the game, Ernie had urged s not to give away corners, as they’d score from them. And right he was. We gave away one a bit unnecessarily and the cross found Steve Murnaghan’s shaved head at the far post, and it was 0-1.

 

At the other end, we had few chances. The only memorable one in the first half was James getting the ball some way out with the ‘keeper off his line. But the delicate lob went just wide to the left.

 

Just 0-1 down at half-time was OK, as it was 10 minutes into the second half. But 20 minutes later it was 0-5.

 

I can’t now distinguish the four goals. Two, I know, came within a minute, when we lost the ball from a kick-off and it went straight back in. I think that one was Steve Murnaghan again, with a shot from the right. The others involved other forms of painful carving up of our defence, and for a while it looked like a repeat of the 0-7 or worse.

 

But then we rallied. By now, Jon B was in mid-field/attack, and he got in one good shot, and an even better cross which was just too high for Dave at the far post. I got into the area at the end of one long run but the shot revealed my resulting lack of puff. Peter struck one of his powerful free-kicks, but the ‘keeper plucked it from under the bar. And that was it: this paragraph is not a selection of our attacks – it’s the complete catalogue!

 

Meantime, Phil was tangling with a left-back who found it necessary to hack opponents, notwithstanding the state of the game (not to mention its rules).

 

And still Clarke Rd attacked. Their ‘keeper joined in at some of their corners, and rather rudely, I thought, strolled back, rather than rushing, when we got possession. But we did not trouble him again, and 0-5 it stayed for the last 15 minutes.

 

We consoled ourselves after the game with the thoughts that the score wasn’t as bad as it sounds (as was said of Wagner’s music); that if they hadn’t scored those four goals in a rush, it would have been 0-1; and not even that if we hadn’t given away the corner and the first goal. So, it wasn’t really a defeat in the true sense of the word (and yes, thanks, I will have another beer).

 

Jon B was third in the MOTM voting for quality defence, as well as attacking. James was second for his usual chasing and harrying. Brian was first: outstanding defending in the face of the hordes.

 

And I had failed to report the votes last week: guest Pete Nolan third [we can guarantee you at least this every week if you’d like to join us next year!], James was second, and TONY first – not just for the penalty save but lots of other good things too.

 

Thanks to Chris Milce for reffing today and to John Milce for answering the call at 12.55 to come and be a linesman.

 

 

 

MARK BRYANT