DBFC 45s 2 Vs 4 Godfathers
Disciplined Service Sports Ground

Starting XI
Mark the GK – Kieran C, Macca, Morse, OB – Patric, Will, Nik, Adam – Kieran M, Fouad
Sub – Anago
Coach – Baz

Two weeks after the 2022-23 season had finished, DBFC 45s kicked off the 2023-24 against Godfathers at the Disciplined Service Sports Ground. In mid-September, we had to deal with torrential rain and knee-high grass, so were grateful for improved conditions this time.

Gaffer Baz had sensibly dropped himself to strengthen the squad on the day of the game but we were left a bit thin with only a flat XI available at kick-off time. Even so, it was a capable side who started and were looking forward to making use of the strike partnership of Fouad and Kieran, with the latter returning from injury.

Though he was later photoshopped out of the team photo, most of the DBFC joy came from the fast running Patric down the right wing. This allowed opportunities for Fouad to get on the ball on the edge of the box. Kieran also had a few chances from through balls, but couldn’t quite get the ball out of his feet whilst trying to escape the close attention of the Godfathers defenders, whilst Adam got on the ball in the box but didn’t have clear chances.

Despite the majority of chances, it was Godfathers who went ahead towards the end of the first half, with not quite enough support being given to Macca and Morse to follow the attacking threat. DBFC had probably had the majority of chances and possession but were 1-0 down with five minutes of the half to go. Luckily, DBFC were given a gift when Kieran M was nudged by a Godfathers defender as Patric floated a high ball in. OB took control of the free-kick on the edge of the box. Having earlier floated in a delightful ball which Nik had headed well over, and with the Godfathers defence and keeper expecting something similar, OB curved a perfect shot into the top corner to equalise. Within minutes Fouad had been released by Will, and he beautifully glided past two defenders to side foot home and we went into half-time with the lead.

This gave us confidence at half-time, and with Anago’s arrival, we were able to rotate the wide players. However, the second half started in very different fashion with DBFC under a great deal of pressure as Godfathers adjusted their set up. We struggled to play out from goal-kicks from Mark to Macca or Morse and were very much ‘under the cosh’. Unsurprisingly, Godfathers equalised with a well take strike in off the post that Mark could do nothing about.

With a thin squad, the DBFC play was becoming less cohesive and the lack of rotation meant tired legs through the middle. Godfathers quickly went two goals ahead with a shot from the edge of the box which slid under Mark on the slick surface and then a quick flick on from a goal-kick cut through the DBFC defence.

DBFC thought they had a chance to get back into it, as Patric, now on the left wing, broke into the box, chipped and jumped over a clumsy challenge and went down with the penalty understandably given. A short delay and some questions about whether contact needed to happen for a penalty and the ref went off to confer with VAR. A short conversation and after genuinely making the VAR signal, which has to be one of the most unusual things we have seen in a Legal League fixture, the ref rescinded his decision and DBFC lost their chance to get anything from the game, with it ending 4-2.

A good-natured game and DBFC were unlucky not to take more from it and will have to wait for their first points of the new season.