Match Report by Andy Robertson
Goals: Mitch Read (2), Sohan Dhana (1), Connor Wright (1),Dan McGrath (1)
The 5s arrived at a drizzly Trent Park for the first fixture of the day. With the second half goal fest from the last match still fresh in the memory, they were looking to finish the year on a high and extend their winning streak (to two).
Jon the gaffer continued to channel his inner Keegan, selecting an attacking 3-5-2 formation. This positive intent paid early dividends with Southgate taking an early 2-0 lead. Both goals were skillfully finished by Mitch, picking his way through the static Osterley defence; the second following excellent work by Aryan, who looked comfortable throughout despite his last minute call-up.
However the 5s weren’t to have it all their own way, as Osterley showed their determination and got one back to halve the deficit. In a closely fought first half, Raj showed his usual tigerish determination in midfield, whilst up front Rich, ST and Kyle all worked hard to create chances to extend our lead. As the half progressed stand-in skipper Robbo stamped his authority on the game with a soft green card, which was followed by a hard head collision that forced him to leave the field for a second time with a nose bleed. But this was just the warm up act for the real entertainment that was delivered in the second half.
Shortly after the break, Sohan picked up the ball outside the 25, drifted past two players and casually dispatched a reverse stick shot into the bottom corner. This was quickly followed by an excellently worked team goal. It started deep in our own half with Ethan taking a quick free hit, the ball was worked down the right hand side before being squared into the D for Dan to calmly sweep home. Osterley pulled one back. But the 5s were undeterred and soon found themselves back up the other end for an attacking short corner. The first attempt on goal was saved on the line, but the ball made its way back to Connor who fired another reverse stick shot into the roof of the net. 5-2. Game over? Not quite.
Osterley didn’t lie down and having worked their third goal, their tails were up and they sniffed the chance of getting something from the game. Unfortunately, Connor wanted to keep the crowd (hat tip to Jon Dann) entertained – he gifted Osterley their fourth and set up a nail-biting finale. Rugged defending from Ito and Rory, multiple saves from Sam in goal and a goal line clearance from Ethan kept our noses in front. An Osterley short corner on the final whistle was the final twist. But that was kept out and the 5s celebrated extending that winning streak (to two).
Man of the match went to Mitch for his classy finishes, with honorable mentions for Ethan.