Southgate Women’s 2s deliver outstanding 9-0 victory against Wimbledon

9-0 W
Match report by Miriam Dirnhuber

Battle of Marathon, 490 BC: the invading Persians lose 6,000 men, killing just 200 Athenians and allies. Battle of Agincourt, 1415 AD: English forces defeat 6,000 Frenchmen with only 600 losses. Battle of Raynes Park, 2024 AD: Southgate Women’s 2s deliver a crushing 9-0 victory against Wimbledon Women’s 3s.

This staggering scoreline is unlike anything the W2s have achieved this season. The humble 2-1 victory against Wimbledon at home before Christmas could not have heralded such a triumph last Saturday and no-one expected the game to end this way.

Neither the disruptive railway engineering works nor the personnel changes prevented us from fielding a strong (albeit somewhat numerically diminished) side. Having lost players to the 1s and a captain to Australia, the 2s welcomed two players for their season debut, namely Cate Aylwin, and Celeste Spink. Wimbledon appeared to select their Under 15s squad and we were surprised to find out we hadn’t, in fact, accidentally turned up to a Raynes Park School games session.

It soon manifested that youthful speed was no substitute for mature experience. The opposition were easily outskilled by Southgate players twice their age and the goals began pouring in. While the lack of any coherent Wimbledon defence did make the task easier, the skill of our forwards cannot be understated. It seemed that every shot flew into the back of the net and, before we knew it, it was half-time and we were 4-0 up.

Players were jubilant during the break but Ronan insisted upon nothing less than ten goals and a clean sheet. Anything short would be an embarrassment for him, and so we set off with the target of six more goals.

Adding to this jubilance was the new-found phenomenon of scoring from shorts. It turns out that short corners are not just brief periods of time to rest the legs but are actually goal-scoring opportunities. We scored two shorts during the match which is about as many as we have scored the rest of the season. The same cannot be said for the oppo as several corner opportunities yielded no results thanks to a smart Southgate defence and a shoddy Wimbledon aim.

Back on the pitch, and again the goals started rolling in. They became a blur and frankly no-one is really sure who scored and in what order. All we know is that Caitlin likes pelting spectators with hockey balls and that Ella thinks the backboard looks the same as the short corner mark. The final whistle went to a devastatingly close 9-0, only one away from the double digits we promised. Nevertheless, even Ronan could not feign some happiness and (reluctantly) congratulated us on the thumping victory.

Our new players covered themselves in glory. Spinky showed zeal and determination, once outskilling players the entire length of the pitch and being inches from scoring. Cate likewise shone with her slick skills and hat-trick giving her a thoroughly well-deserved Man of the Match. Despite Wimbledon fielding only juniors, each of our young players performed superbly and all put in a great effort.

Southgate W2s go into next Saturday full of optimism for an away fixture against West Herts, whom we easily defeated at home in the last leg. The journey into top 3 looks steep but we are confident that if we continue to play as we did last Saturday, we will cement our place as one the League’