having started the season with 2 draws and 4 losses a match against LTF seemed like the last thing we needed, however on the back of a win in the league and another in the cup things were looking up for nites especially with a strong squad.
Unfortunately we had lots of late with drawls and started with just one sub.
left to right; Bertie, Stef, Tel, H, Sanj, Hao, Jeff, Luke, Varun, Jamil, Varun
LTF must be one of the most technical sides around compared to a number of other leagues however we circled the wagons and kept it tight, the narrow Kowloon Tsia pitch # 2 helping a lot.
While the emphases was placed on defence when we broke forward it was with pace using the wings as well as nice passing football out through midfield with Jeff and Luke linking up well. Forlan proved a useful outlet however playing on the edge of their back four our slow timing on through balls left him offside on a number of occasions as LTF pushed the back line up.
The weak link in LTF is their paymaster who everyone including us seemed happy to leave to play with the ball, on the one occasion we closed him down, Luke challenged and put a ball behind their defence, Forlan pounced, rounded their keeper and we were leading 1-nil.
Coming in at half time everyone was felling high however Henry kept reminding people there was still another half to play.
LTF trudged off looking despondent however they had an army of subs.
1 change at half time with Jamil off and MattT on the left wing and Varun pusing up front and hao switching sides.
The second half was played in similar vein and we had a sold defence, I counted 19/20 passes by the opposition without a sniff of the ball for Nites however for all their probing they never came close to scoring with Bertie doing a find job clearing the back line.
With the effects of a long weekend of football being felt by a number of players and the lack of subs against their fresh players it was not surprising that we would concede, they won a corner and an unmarked player headed into to level the match with 15 mins to go.
We still looked good on the break it took some shouting from the sidelines to get people to drop back and slow down play, Betie had it down to a tee taking 2-3 mins to take a goal kick and a few players sensibly when clearing aimed for the sky.
We survived a couple of dangerously positioned free kicks to see the match out a 1-1.
I would say this is our performance of the year so far against the best side in the league, while Solid Rock (aka FC Show de Bola) may have 11 Patrick Viera type players their skill level does not come close to these guys.
We were looking like odds on relegation candidates a few weeks ago however with 5 points in the bag things are looking up and while some players may prefer an easy life in the second division it’s always enjoyable playing (watching from the sidelines) against teams like this and coming away with a result.
back in Yorkshire to the scene of the crime for Soho’s party, the viewing gallery spot saw defered MOTM tied for El Tel and H and MOTD to me for haivng a snooze in the morning.
LTF are most likely our candidates in the cup Final, however we proved today that we can match them. With a full squad and a narrow pitch we can win this final….I’ll start trying to book Happy Valley grass pitches……
No more matches this year so enjoy the break, I won’t be at the party on Friday however I have nominated El Tel to drink on my behalf. I’m out of action for 2 weeks but ill be back in the dugout mid Jan