U9 Lions v Coventry Saracens Junior – Sunday 9 September 2018

The start of the seven a-side chapter for us and boy were they up for it. Harveer was up with his kit on at 5.30 am raring to go and couldn’t wait for the game!!! The boy was ready to display all he had learnt from his world cup heroes and he did it well. Beautiful touches in the middle of the park with him and Alex linking up many times to carve up the opposition. It was also the official introduction of Joel and Cormac and what an introduction it was….with Cormac going forward and penetrative and Joel strong at the back, we blitzed the first half. They came into the game in the second half and the game became more even. However, the most pleasing thing of all was seeing what we were coaching regarding positions coming to fruition, and maybe a little bit of rotation of the positions too! We have only had one session with positions and they have soaked it up already! Some quick learning done there and it was a delight to see the work rate with all prepared to track when there is danger, and the group moving together as a unit for us. Some of them desperate to come off for water breaks while the game was ongoing was funny! It was a solid victory and a better understanding of the game all round. They really enjoyed themselves with many different types of goals flying in from all sorts of angles. Jaylan’s swerve round the corner, Cormac’s outrageous attempt from miles out, Joel’s close range rocket in the top corner stick will live long in the memory and we could have got more. George’s contribution in goal and some through passes from him for the first time in his life with a desire to play in midfield was strange to hear, and a first for him, and he did it well….the one that hit the post would have been just reward for his efforts. In addition, Will’s save from a shot that was going high in the roof of the net was awesome. Zac looking better than ever spraying it around and John with some nice little link up play in the middle the park was also good to see. Defensively we allowed them a couple of goals from errors at the back from ‘overplaying it,’ but that word has been erased from my vocabulary. There is no such thing as overplaying it, but only the finding of space and the use of the whole pitch. Just like England at the World cup, we will play out from the back, and we will continue to get better at it the more we do it. Good start boys…the bar has been set high, let’s continue to improve.