Week 4: M1s secure back to back wins
WH&E M1 2 : 1 Harpenden M2
It’s a 12:15 pushback and Winchmore are hosting Harpenden at Southbury for their second home game of the season. Winchmore go into the game on good form and a full squad, as well as a stand-in manager in Rafi Zeff.
Harpenden started strongly, passing well, while Winchmore pressed from the front utilising the large squad with constant rotations. Both teams found chances through the high tempo with Harpenden having the better of them but being frustrated by the home keeper, James Gatting, who held his own including a masterful double save with his arse!! 😂
As the game went on Winchmore gained more possession playing around the back and down the wings through the runs of Jake and Stan, Winchmore’s second fastest player, they grew into the game. This along with the introduction of debutant Tim to midfield the pressure built, and the breakthrough came through a strike from Sam Turmaine which proved too much for the keeper despite getting a hand to it.
Some more good link up play down the wings between the likes of Dominic Smith and Colin and the chances keep coming. Finally, after a ball down the line to Sam who then plays a perfect ball across goal for a simple but well-timed tap in for Colin and the lead becomes two.
Harpenden kept up the pressure though and with Winchmore beginning to tire and the press weaken, Harpenden’s quality showed as they finally got their goal. However, the Winchmore defence held on and with the work of players like Stuart Carrick, Dom and Adam Machray in midfield, the 2-1 scoreline was maintained and along with it Winchmore’s good form.
WH&E M2 1 : 2 Cheshunt M3
Another match there for the taking, but another match that just got away from the Men’s 2s. We had the better of the first half, with more chances, and finished the half 1-0 up. With a squad of 16, we had the legs, but perhaps not the organisation, and with everyone bar the keeper taking time off the pitch we struggled to retain our shape. Cheshunt pressed, and took a 2-1 lead, and despite the game opening up, and multiple good breaks, we couldn’t provide a finishing touch to achieve a deserved equaliser.
With the youngsters – and indeed everyone on the squad – continuing to improve, the future looks bright. And organisationally, we can only improve with some senior experience coming from Richard Chapman, making his debut, but almost certainly having played more league matches than the rest of the team combined!!
And I’m pleased to report, that with Richard’s debut, there were three generations of one family on the pitch – something that can’t be a very common occurrence! One goal each would have made it a better story – but sadly not to be…
WH&E L1 1 : 2 Southgate L3
The ladies 1s were very happy to be playing their first home game of the season at the weekend against a team where we knew it would be a close match.
The match started off very even with chances from both teams being well defended by both defensive lines. After 10 mins or so, we unfortunately went 1-0 due to a short corner. A break away by Bethany ended with a 1 on 1 with the keeper that couldn’t be converted but our strong forward line were able to keep the ball up this side of the pitch. Another shot from Bethany was defended by the keeper, but the rebound was picked up by Helen Fenning who slapped it into the back of the net to bring us up to 1-1! Our urgency and pace during the first half was phenomenal.
In the 2nd half, we began to get a little tired and started to make some easy mistakes which gave Southgate an advantage and even though Gem, Charlotte, Mia and Shell were doing a great job in defence, along with Nic in goal, Southgate were able to sneak a goal to make it 2-1.
We played the last 15/20 mins of the match fighting back hard and were able to create a few chances but couldn’t keep our cool and get it in the back of the net, meanwhile Rachelle was diving left, right and centre all over our defensive D to stop Southgate in their tracks.
Final score 2-1 to Southgate but we’re not too disappointed as we played very well and are one step closer to getting our first win of the season!
Player of the match and dick of the day both to Rachelle Pearson who was making really great interceptions and plays up the pitch to progress attack, as well as spending half of the match on the ground. 😅
WH&E L2 0 : 7 NPL L1
The ladies 2s slipped to their 3rd straight defeat and are yet to quite find their feet following promotion last year. After a bright start where Winchmore had NPL on the back foot, the visitors found their rhythm and started to dominate the midfield and create plenty of chances upfront. And despite brave defending, NPL went into half-time 4-0 up. The second half was heading in the same direction until the unfortunate injury to NPL’s playmaker, who stood on the ball whilst heading back to the middle after their second goal of the half. Winchmore battled hard, but couldn’t get any reward upfront with the visitors running out worthy winners 7-0.