On Saturday 7th October Whitchurch Under 14 girls took to the pitch for the first time with a mixed team of Under 14s and Under 12s and no goalie!
We started off with the older girls, Mia, Izzy and Mathilda in mid-field and Alice as sweeper supporting Holly and Hermionie in back. Suzie was up front.
We had the greater part of the possession for most of the match and considering many of the girls had never met before, they soon got used to calling for the ball and ably moved it around the pitch. We had some really solid shots on goal and were denied simply by the fact that they had a goalie. Holly had a fantastic match at left back and was really effective. Ellie came on in front to see if we could make some more of our chances, but their goalie was just too good and we finished the match 2:1 down. If we had had a goalie though, we would have almost certainly prevailed, as they were able to convert their only 2 shots on goal and we had had many shots on goal and had been denied.
Mathilda went up front for us in this match to see if she could generate a bit more “fire power”. This team was also without a goalie, so we were on an even playing field. Suzie went in a right half, Ellie at centre half. Again, our girls moved the ball around really effectively and what was very pleasing to see amongst the youngsters that although they were more tentative about going in for the tackles, when they did, they won the ball the vast majority of the time.
Hermionie took a big hit to her knee in this match, so our only sub Mia had to go on for her, which meant that we had no capacity at all to rest any of our players. And although we led for much of the match, tired legs started to show and eventually the score evened up and that is how the match ended at 3:3.
However, at least 3 players were involved in all 3 of these goals, with one goal starting with Holly at left back, all the way across the pitch to Suzie at right half, who then fed the ball into Izzy, who was out of the left mid field and she thumped it in, in very satisfying style indeed! Great use of space and players.
By this time, our gang were run off their feet, not really having had the chance for any kind of rest, but they still worked very very hard and dominated the game in the first few minutes. Our defence was really spent by this point and Holly had nothing more to give, so we fell victim to a swift succession of goals towards the end. We were, however, outrun and not outclassed by any means!
In this match we had a series of short corners that worked really well. Our injector Izzy sent the ball into Mathilda who beat the main defender every single time, however, what we did not have up our sleeve was any ability to vary this set-piece. Some practice on some lays off so that someone else can take a shot on goal, would have no doubt delivered some fantastic chances for further goals. Final score 6:2 to Shrewsbury, but the majority of their goals came in our last very tired 5 minutes.