Match Report 18/02/18
Edgware Town u9
Edgware Town u9s lost 3-0 at home against a strong Colney Heath side. We just couldn’t get going up the slope in the first half and could easily have been more than just 1-0 down at half time. We were being overrun and at times couldn’t get out of our half. But the boys put in a fantastic second half performance and were well in the game up until we conceded a 2nd a few minutes before the end. The third came seconds before the final whistle. We had no subs today (colney had 4) and all the boys were out on their feet at the end. We really cannot fault their effort and determination. We were just missing that cutting edge up front that could have made the difference. When we play the ball to feet we look a very good team. Unfortunately we were harried off the ball too often, especially in the first half and gave up possession too easily. But that’s something to work on in training. It would be wrong to single out any player so no individual player of the match this week.
Edgware Town U10 (Reds)
There is something very satisfying about eking out a 1-0 victory away from home and that is precisely what the under 10 Reds managed in making it 4 wins on the spin at Borehamwood Youth Knights.
The Mini-Wares were by far the better team in the first half, knocking the ball around nicely as they probed to find a way through the Borehamwood defence. The cutting edge of last Sunday was missing, however, and a somewhat shot-shy Edgware struggled to create clear cut opportunities or to make their pressure count. Zack Gelbart was unlucky not to score with a cheeky back-heel but, aside from that, Edgware’s superior possession did not hurt the home team.
As the first half looked like it was destined to finish goalless, new signing Nima Parsa hit a well-struck shot from wide on the right which the Borehamwood keeper was able only to parry into the path of Kian Zabeti. The Mini-Wares’ number 3 made no mistake, volleying it home. Zabeti’s unexpected return to the squad provided a real fillip before kick-off and his run into the six yard box was every bit as well timed.
Parsa only joined the squad this week – his signing made necessary by a long term injury to Sahil Mehta and the boys’ extra-football commitments – but he slotted into the team effortlessly after a single training session and appears to be an astute addition to the squad.
Borehamwood grew into the game after the interval and threw everything they could at the Edgware defence. The recent change in the Mini-Wares’ formation – from an attacking 3-1-2 to the more defensive 3-2-1 – has made Edgware a much harder team to break down and today they formed an impregnable defensive unit, expertly marshalled by Raees Bhatti who is rapidly becoming an enforcer and a leader in equal measure.
Bhatti organised his wing-backs well and, in the first half, Tom Cadwallader and James O’Callaghan were again excellent. Never out of position when Edgware lost the ball, the pair contributed greatly when in possession, both looking to get forward and bring the midfield and striker into play. In the second half Edgware had to soak up much more pressure and Parsa and Zabeti, architect and executioner of the only goal of the game, were well up to the task – shielded brilliantly by O’Callaghan who shone in the middle of the park.
Resolutely though Edgware defended, Borehamwood broke through a number of times in the closing stages of the game – including injury time which was Fergie-like in its inexplicably epic length – but when they did Rafi Kaye was there to save the day. Kaye showed last week that he has fully regained his confidence and mojo following his return from a broken arm and he was magnificent today. Two or three times he raced off his goal-line to narrow the angle, forcing the attacker to shoot wide or straight at Kaye. His shot-stopping has always been first class but Kaye’s alertness and positioning today was just as good.
When the final whistle finally brought this close encounter to a close, the Mini-Wares were rightly proud of their win. It was only their second clean sheet of the season but boy did they work hard for it.
Lots of positives today. Parsa is a real find and will add strength in depth to the squad. Kaye is back to his best and, with Bhatti imperious at the back, Edgware have become spoilt for choice in terms of players able to play the wing-back positions either side of him with real skill.
All that was lacking was the final ball and (Zabeti’s strike aside) some clinical finishing but that is not a cause for concern because the Mini-Wares are normally strong in those departments and we will have much better days in front of goal.
With Dean Novick and Nathan Segal set to return to the squad next week, other than key players having to miss some of the coming games due to other sporting commitments, the only fly in the ointment is Mehta’s injury which is likely to keep him out for at least 6 weeks. He will miss playing and we will miss him. The silver lining for Mehta is that he has sown up the goal of the season competition already, and it’s only February.
MotM: One of those days where there are a number of strong contenders but it is impossible to ignore Rafi Kaye’s match saving contribution. He was outstanding today and it is fantastic to have our No. 1 back to his very best.
Edgware Town u10 (blues)
ETFC u10 Blues notched up a 6-1 home victory today against Harvesters Coyotes on a lovely sunny morning at Queens.
We started well and created plenty of chances to go into the break 2-1 up. We ramped up the pressure in the second half to score 4 more against a good footballing team, with some great team and individual goals.
The boys are learning to be more disciplined tactically when necessary, but again, just need to get their heads up a little more in the final third to pick the right pass when required.
Edgware Town U11
Magnificent performance from ETFC u11s today in a 3-1 victory away against Maccabi London Lions White. Over the past 3 weekends, our performance levels have been raised significantly and the boys have played with greater confidence and maturity. Today was an excellent match between 2 good teams. The first half was a very tight affair with Lions opening the scoring and us equalising just before the halftime break, a lovely finish from Alfie Mattiucci after an excellent team passing move. We dominated the 2nd half and were a little unlucky to only score 2 further goals. Josh Diamond scoring with a screamer into the top right corner from outside the box after a driving run and Aaron Levenson slotting in from close range after another lovely team attacking move. We created several other good scoring opportunities with quick passing and good movement but weren’t able to extend our lead. Our passing today on a great surface was the best it’s been all season. What was so pleasing today was not only the quick interplay which allowed us to create time and space on the ball – but the composure to turn defence into attack time and time again was fantastic to watch. We rode our luck a little in the final few minutes to prevent a real grandstand finish but we were full value for the victory. Such was the quality of the performace, I almost copped out and gave the whole team the MoTM award, but I decided to give it to Zac Green after a composed and determined performance at both left back in the 1st half and goalkeeper in the 2nd half. A very proud manager today.
Edgware Town U13
U13’s battled there way to the semi finals of the league cup beating colney heath 5-4. Bit of a scrappy affair today, but a win is a win, and even more rewarding when playing with no subs and stand-in goalkeeper. Happy days.
Aldenham FC United 0-2 Hadley Wood Herons
In spite of the result a great game with nothing much between the sides. Hadley Wood Herons came to play us believing it would be an easy game ( they obviously had looked our lowly league position) but as all our opponents have found we are tough opponents, very hard to break down and good all round footballers.
We played really well in spite of only having 11 players available for the match and losing Jenson Harris for half the match as he wasn’t feeling well. Jenson showed a lot of bravery to come on again and play for the last 25 minutes of the match and did not get his just reward when striking the ball in the last five minutes of the match when he only hit the bottom of the Hadley Wood right hand post.
They scored two goals, one in each half and I felt we could have done better by clearing the ball sooner but that’s probably what all managers think whenever their team concedes goals.
We genuinely played some really good football and a bit more confidence and luck in front of goal could have seen us get a different result. We just need to play a bit better in the final third and have more confidence in front of goal.
On the positive side a magnificent man of the match performance from Luke Voller playing in the middle of the pitch rather than his usual right midfield position. He was literally everywhere on the pitch and made some excellent passes and tackles all game long.
Also very noticeable in his best performance of the season a mention for Alex Daly playing in an unfamiliar position at right back.
A very solid performance from Ruairi McEllhatton and Bilguun Batsukh whose dead ball deliveries at corners and free kicks were truly excellent.
As ever a strong performance from our extremely solid defensive unit including Robin Sargeson in goal (we won’t mention the one small indiscretion in the second half). In fact statistically we have one of the meanest defences in the league.
If we can keep building on those solid foundations and improve our attacking play our results will improve because actually we keep proving on the pitch that are a pretty decent team.
Anyway we will have two more chances to try to beat Hadley Wood once more on the Cup and in the League.