U10 Shield Success in Sizzling Shropshire Sunshine

The outstanding Oakmeadow U10 squad exacted revenge on their defeators from last season, St. Giles Primary, this afternoon at The Venue, Oswestry, with a blitzkrieg beginning that proved to be the deciding moment in what was a blistering game in both skill and temperature.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following being put through their paces by coach-of-the-season nominee, Miss. Turner, (not that they needed to warm up in a temperature in the mid 20s), and being carefully overseen by Director of Football, Mrs. Whelan, the boys were called to make their way down the tunnel for the beginning of match proceedings.

 

Each player from both teams was given a personal introduction by the Master of Ceremonies, much to the adulation of the adoring crowd, and then the Champions League music was played to remind all present of the importance of the occasion.  Playing at the home of TNS, the squads were informed that they were going to be playing on the same pitch that would host the first qualifying round of the Champions League proper in June – this reporter couldn’t help wonder how many of the talented football players on display might one day grace the same opportunity, and if so, how much recognition they would give to the talented teachers and school staff who carefully honed their tremendous talents…!

 

 

 

 

 

 

On completion of this classical piece of musical composition, the teams took their positions in their relative halves for the start of the game.  This was it, and we were confident.

Right from the referees whistle, St. Giles won the ball and  immediately pumped the ball forward into the Oakmeadow half, and the ball was expertly cleared by the juggler Josh Hayes in the direction of the hare-like Harry Carr, who passed the ball further towards the marauding Maddox Gray.  With a deft touch that would have fooled premier league defenders, Maddox was through on goal, and possessing the pace of a gazelle, there was no stopping him.  Looking up past the approaching St. Giles goalkeeper, Maddox stroked the ball expertly towards the bottom right corner.  1 minute, 1-0,

As they say in South America: GOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLL.

GOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL. GOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Credit to St, Giles, they did not allow this early upset to affect them, and they immediately put pressure on the Oakmeadow half to try and get an instant response.  They earned a corner, and with clearances not fully relieving the pressure, a long range effort eventually found the comfortable and assuring hands of Luke Offland (Watching Luke with an air of composure, it came to mind that the England number 1 spot is as yet undecided, with fellow Salopian Joe Hart currently doing his best not to be selected.  Who knows, it isn’t beyond the realms of reality Luke!).  A spot of indecision in clearing the Oakmeaodow lines led to another corner, and following a ricochet in the box, pressure was eventually relieved from the gallant George Hadley with a wholly committed challenge.  George was then able to find Harry Carr up the other end of the pitch, and the St. Giles keeper was off his haunches just to clear in time with Harry approaching.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following a spell of tic-tac-toe between the two teams, it was then St. Giles turn to press the Oakmeadow goal area.  Clearly taking inspiration from the champions Manchester City and Pep Guardiola, our boys decided to try and pass the ball out from the goalkeeper on not one, but two occasions.  Unfortunately coach Turner has some work to do in this area, as both times we lost possession, with Luke’s hands being stung on the first occasion with a shot from outside the area, and then him doing excellently to push the ball around the post from point blank range on the second.  Quick instructions from the touch line were ordered – go long!

In the heat of the afternoon, playing a squad game was crucial.  Josh Hayes was replaced by Noah Lock, with the former heading straight for a water bottle.  Noah immediately used his twinkle toes to good effect by heading down the left wing, putting a great cross in which was defence-splitting, but just beyond the reach of Will Gray.  Noah Lock was again involved, winning the ball tenaciously on the edge of his own area, before Maddox Gray released Harry Carr, but again it was just cleared away from him in time.  With that, the whistle was blown, and it was time for a break for half time, and a much needed fluid intake.

 

Following the change of ends, Oakmeadow were first to put the pressure on, the returning Josh Hayes clearing up field which led to a foul on Maddox Gray.  Captain Marvel Caiden Sadd stepped up with a fearsome drive which flashed inches over the crossbar to the middle of the goal.  Pressure was placed on both sides, but Oakmeadow were looking comfortable and confident as time went on.  The magnificent Maddox Gray was constantly hustling for the ball, but just couldn’t find the way through.  One rogue ball fell to Caiden Sadd, but he was unable to keep his thunderous drive down.  St. Giles pressure increased in the final 5 minutes, and attacked down the left, but were well challenged by St. George Hadley, with the ball being expertly shadowed out of play by Caiden, leading with a captain’s composure consummate of Vincent Kompany.  In the closing stages, Maddox was again through but shot over the bar, and was continuing to hustle with time ticking down.  Josh Hayes cleared from in front of the Oakmeadow goal when St. Giles looked dangerous and the boys were struggling to clear their lines.  Following this, Maddox Gray finally found some space to go through on goal, but his repeat-of-the-first-goal effort dragged agonisingly wide with a thankful St. Giles goalkeeper onlooking.  However, it didn’t matter, as following this the referee blew his final whistle, announcing that the overjoyed Oakmeadow team had claimed the shield in their moment in the spotlight (or sunlight!).

Championes, Championes, ole ole ole

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cue celebrations and adulation from the adoring crowd of onlookers, and finally the presentation of the shield to the team, including the honorary ‘Oakie Bear’ who had struggled into our kit for the occasion – someone who clearly needs to take part in our weekly mile challenge…!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Commiserations to St. Giles, who were worthy advocates in what was a very competitive game and a great advert for junior football. Huge congratulations to the boys and to Miss. Turner for continuing our recent footballing prowess, and thanks to the family members who came down to cheer them on.  What a great way to celebrate a stunning bank holiday with a stunning victory.

Ostermeyer out 🙂

1 Response so far »

  1. Jeanette said,

    May 7, 2018 @ 9:23 pm     Reply

    It was a scorcher of a day and a scorcher of a game. Well done boys you were an absolute pleasure to watch today 😍

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