Churchfields 3 – Oakdale 2
Churchfields Junior School played their first football match of the season against Oakdale. Some of the children involved were playing in their first match for the school and it was also the first experience that some had in playing a 9-a-side match. Churchfields fielded a mixture of children from years 5 and 6.
In the first half it was evident that nerves were present; there were a few misplaced passes and touches on the ball. However, Churchfields soon began to find their rhythm and started moving the ball with more confidence, exploiting the space in the middle of the pitch. In the first half there were chances were few and far between for both teams and both keepers responded well when tested. Then Churchfields earned a corner with a few minutes left of the first half and from this Marli (playing his first game for Churchfields) kept his composure and slotted the ball into the net to give Churchfields a 1-0 lead going into the half-time break.
In the second half, Churchfields began to up the tempo and create more chances. With some tactical changes, Mason began to use his excellent speed to threaten the opposition from the wings whilst Tristan continually chased down every ball, putting the opposition under threat. Another chance was created soon after the break and Arthur, back from a lengthy injury, lobbed the keeper from inside the area. Churchfields were now 2-0 ahead and looking slightly more comfortable.
Oakdale then improved and started to threaten. Many attacks were stopped by Mario who marshalled the defence superbly. However Oakdale were able to break away and a speedy counter-attack gave them their first goal to make the score 2-1.
Churchfields responded well and began to create further chances. The Oakdale keeper was in superb form and made a string of amazing saves to keep his team in the game. However, Arthur created an opening after an impressive solo run and slotted the ball into the right hand corner of the goal to restore Churchfields’ two-goal lead.
Churchfields continued to create more chances but were thwarted again and again by the Oakdale goalkeeper and the woodwork. Oakdale, always threatening on the counter attack, managed to break away again and made the score 3-2, setting up a tense finish.
However, Churchfields held firm and the final whistled sounded. It was an excellent performance by both teams and an important win for Churchfields.