Belper Town Under 12 Gold Sox secure decisive win against Ashbourne Aztecs in DJFL League meeting
By Ed Turner
An assured return to form today in a solid display against Ashbourne Aztecs in an energetic match, in which large periods of play were dominated by the Nailers.
The game started with some concern with three of our players absent from the line up due to sickness and injury. We had no substitutes and our team talk was centered on maintaining pace and control of the game whilst at the same time conserving energy to see the game out for the full hour.
The match began with Gold Sox committing players forward quickly and pressing high to put the opposition under immediate pressure - a lesson we took away from last weeks defeat. It made it hard for Ashbourne to penetrate effectively and we dominated much of the first half in terms of possession, with some great movement of the ball into space.
The only challenge we struggled to overcome was to convert into actual goals!
Pressing high resulted in Ashbourne taking advantage of long balls and beating us on the break; and against the run of play they had a fine strike on goal from 18 yards, superbly saved by Luis Barber.
This wake up call, if it was needed, moved the boys into action and we responded to the earlier scare with Harvey Brown securing two great goals in the last 4 mins of the first period, brilliantly assisted by Leo Turner and Kai Adderley respectively.
With a score line of 2-0 at half time, the boys knew it could go either way if we were to let complacency or energy levels get the better of us.
Suffice to say the Gold Sox returned to the pitch absolutely determined to secure a win, and put on a brilliant display of football which resulted in a number of shots on target and three further balls into the back of the net, Harvey dominated the goal scoring with a two of these but the midfield players made excellent work of moving it competently to his feet. A further goal was scored by centre half Alfie Bryan in a brilliantly taken strike just outside the box from a set piece, and his first of the season.
Luis, in our goal, didn’t have it all easy either! As our boys slowly succumbed to fatigue after a tireless effort after about 50 mins, Ashbourne kept up a relentless and admirable effort to try to come back into the game. One strong strike after a good run past our defensive line was cleverly slotted in to the goal, but a couple of brilliant saves and a cracking demonstration of Barber's "sweeper-keeper" prowess kept Ashbourne out of contention.
A well deserved three points for Gold Sox from today's efforts and a great demonstration of team work and football played in the right spirit by both teams.