Watlington 2 Eynsham 1
Saturday, 27 April 2013
Wat: Andy Wright, Max Gallagher
This end of season game was not played at a pedestrian pace and was full of committed players from two teams who both wanted to win.
Watlington started the game brightly. The manager and players were pleased to welcome back Damo and Tom Haliday into the team and these two were setting the tempo of the game in midfield and dominating from there. Andy Wright was proving difficult to handle for the Eynsham back line, making clever runs and using his body strength to great effect. With the back four looking solid Watlington had a base to build on. Watlington were playing through the thirds and at times the football was attractive, Eynsham looked dangerous on the counter and were using their two big, mobile centre forwards to good effect.
Watlington took the lead with a great ball played through to Andy Wright who had spun off his defender, watched the ball carefully and fired from 20 yards over the stranded Eynsham keeper. The lead did not last long. A quick free kick played behind the Watlington fullback left him with enough time to cross into their centre forward who caught the ball low on the volley and fired it into the corner of the net.
The wind was blowing down the pitch with Watlington playing into it. This seemed to help Eynsham who dominated the first 15 minutes of the second half. Watlington were struggling to play in the Eynsham half and the ball was coming back onto their defence quickly. Solid performances from both the Little brothers, playing as the centre half partnership, meant that Eynsham were not able to make the most of being on top. When the defence were caught out James Conn was alert and in good form to ensure that the score remained equal. Watlington began to find their feet and started to play through the thirds again. Max Gallagher was doing a great job of running the Eynsham left back and was gaining Watlington ground every time he got the ball. A well worked move from Watlington, from full back to centre mid and into the striker, resulted in a free kick on the edge of the box. A deflected shot resulted in a goal mouth scramble with the ball bobbling out, about twelve yards from goal, Max Gallagher fired in an arrow of a shot with his weaker foot. Eynsham pushed for an equaliser but the Watlington back four held firm with some valuable contributions from an in-form Gareth Bridges.