DBFC 45s 2-4 HK Rep Team Vets

Monday 24 May at Happy Valley 3, KO 6.30pm

Squad: Travis/ Pedro, Matija, Steve, Ben/ Fela Baz, Dom, Thierry, Simon/ Patric. Initial subs: Scott, Hymsey, Morse, OB, Kieran C.

Scorers: Dom, Hymsey

This was our 7th outing against this team of vets, all of whom have represented the HK team at some level. Our record against them to date going into the game was Won 1, Drew 1, Lost 4. We had a good squad for this one, with Travis kindly stepping in to cover for our usual GKs and Dom wanting a taste of real old boys’ football before his return to UK. As usual with a big squad, we prepared a rotation plan to make sure everyone got a good run out, whilst hoping to keep a consistent shape and quality for the entire game. We were on one of the small HV pitches, which was a mixed blessing – the ex pros could not ping the ball at will into open spaces for their high velocity left winger; but the pros sat quite deep for most of the game and we found it difficult to create clear chances except via shots from outside the area. We started the game positively and, as they tend to do, the ex pros gave us a bit of space and assessed our potential. Dom started to find good spaces between midfield and attack and always looked capable of striking from distance – his best effort hit post and cross-bar but somehow stayed out. However the pros were always dangerous on the counter attack. They went ahead after their left winger accelerated past Pedro and surprised Travis with a powerful shot at his near post. 0-1 and slightly against the run of play. We made our first rotation at 30 minutes with our subs coming on for Fela, Dom, Patric, Matija and Ben. This was fairly seamless and we continued to have good possession, particularly down Morse’s left midfield. However the pros went 2-0 ahead after we lost the ball moving forward and failed a couple of times to clear our lines in defence, giving their CF an unchallenged strike from close range. We made our final changes for the final third and soon clawed one back with Dom scoring from close range. We thought the comeback was on but the pros scored twice in quick succession – first an uncharacteristic loss of control by Morse at CB allowed their striker a 1 on 1 against Travis. We went to a back 3 and pushed Matija forward but left ourselves open to a sucker punch that put the game out of reach. But we kept going and Hymsey netted for a consolation goal to make the final score 2-4. A good mostly even game but their manager summed it up by saying that we made too many mistakes in possession.