When Comrades Become Rivals: 4s vs 3s Derby

Southagte Mens 4s lost 0-3 to Southgate Mens 3s

Mens 4s report by Alessandro Onano

The derby is a unique match. A game that’s worth more than just the points at stake… 30 friends for 364 days a year, who become opponents for those 70 minutes, eager on one side to continue their perfect journey so far, and on the other side, eager to write another chapter of that famous saga, “it doesn’t happen… but if it does!” that could change the dynamics of social events within the club for a few weeks.

Spoiler alert: it didn’t happen!

The 3s, playing away today, managed to take home the 3 points in a more balanced match than the first leg but with clear differences in skill.

The 4s had a bit of a bumpy start with a couple of absences that forced them to devise a different tactic than planned. But Coach Chris, once again making himself available to lead the 4s, after recovering from the surprise of finding a U18 formation in the changing room (Alessandro, Lik, and Luke were running late), reorganised the team, set out a few simple but clear guidelines, and focused on off-the-ball movements and defensive attention as the day’s objectives.

The match report is straightforward: the 3s made the most of their higher technical ability and team chemistry, but the 4s defended with discipline. The crucial moment came halfway through the first half when the league leaders scored the decisive 3-goal gap that set the match on the right track for them. But the 4s didn’t let it get to them, and unlike the last match, in which fatigue caught up with them in the second half, they actually raised their level and gave away a few more chances. The only goal of the second half was somewhat fortunate, and there were even opportunities for a consolation goal!

Josh, making his debut with the 4s and returning from an injury layoff, brought his talent to the table and created numerous problems for the opposing midfield. His performance earned him the Man of the Match award.

But a special mention goes to the entire young core of the team, who stepped up significantly and showed that those who were opponents today can become teammates in the not-so-distant future.

Noteworthy is also the debut for the 4s of Yu Ito, who, in his first season in the red and black, driven by his excellent performances with the 5s, put on a very good performance… much to the dismay of his captain Hot Dog!

The real disappointment of the day is not being able to celebrate our Birthday Boy Alastair with a goal… that appointment is postponed to the next game.

The 4s haven’t lost two games in a row in almost a year. Now, it’s straight to the challenge with Barnes 2 to get back on track towards that 5th place finish.