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Managers Thoughts: U15 v St Francis Rangers [A] – Cup

Andy's thoughts after the Under 15's beat St Francis Rangers 3-5 in the County Cup.

What an afternoon of football! Firstly, congratulations to the lads for getting through to the next round of the County Cup but let’s not do it the hard way next time.

You see it so many times in football where a team gets going after getting a goal back. We were pretty much coasting along and went in at half time 3-0 up, however, St Francis are a good side and were never going to just roll over. They are joint top of the Mid Sussex Div A League so I expected a reaction in the second half and we got one! Once we conceded the penalty, then it was game on and it felt like the game was slipping away from us. We just couldn’t contain them and they fought back to 3-3.. not unlike us in last week’s Strikers game. The big difference this week though was that we didn’t give up. We got our game principles going again and hit back at them with 2 great strikes that won us the game. It shows fantastic character to get back into a match as normally the team with the momentum ultimately wins it.      

In terms of our performance again it was really good in patches, playing with 3 at the back with 2 wing backs we thought worked really well. We looked comfortable in defence for most of the game and played better out from the back. Aarran (Aarran Racine) and I both thought we looked a lot more composed starting off attacks from our defenders and playing through the lines. Some of our passing was fantastic at times but equally there were also many occassions where we gave the ball away needlessly, either with a stray pass or getting caught in possession by taking too many touches. One area that we must improve on is defending our box better from set plays. Never let the ball bounce! Two of their goals came from these set plays!!

On a positive, we really liked the way we reacted to win the ball back once we had lost it but we must be consistent in doing this.

We did score some really good goals today. Harry with a brace, both of which were well taken. Jamie Hurst also with a brace, which were equally brilliant goals and finally Ryan with the clincher that took a nasty deflection and looped over their keeper. Other highlights for me were Danny’s debut as it looked like he had been playing with the lads for ages and put in a really strong performance, as too did Owen and Zach!  

I’m so proud of the lads today as St Francis are no push over. We didn’t allow last week’s loss to affect our game and you can see the improvement coming through, it just needs to be consistent throughout a match.

Our reward for winning today is a home tie on 11th November against Premier United of Div B Mid Sussex.

Let’s keep the Cup run going.