On a cold and very windy night Russell Vale took to the field against a Coniston team that beat us 9-0 back in 2011. Since that day I have seen an enormous improvement in the team and this was reflected in their latest performance. The Cobras certainly had the better of the first half and despite the cross field wind managed to get their passing game going right from the start. Blair Dunn, Christian Baade Mortimer, Jordan Errington and Harrison Benn all had goal scoring opportunities but were denied by the keeper. Bailey Baade Mortimer also went on a superb run and was blatantly brought down right on the edge of the box. Unfortunately Harrison Benn whom is normally lethal from free kicks and corners couldn’t get the better of the windy conditions.
Right on the stroke of HT a poor throw in our own half set up their striker to race through and score to give Coniston a 1-0 lead. It was a bitter blow especially after the way the lads had played but yet again another reminder of the concentration level needed in Division II.
In the second half Russell Vale were determined to get back on level terms and probably the best chance fell to last season’s Club Top Scorer, Jordan Errington but once again their keeper came out on top. As the game wore on Russell Vale appeared to run out of steam, Ethan Johnson did well to save and keep the Cobras in the game but it was only a temporary reprieve. Coniston finished the stronger team and scored twice in the last few minutes to seal the match 3-0.
I always tell the lads before the game it’s not the result but the performance that counts and although this was our worst defeat of the season I was still pleased with the way they tried to play football. After the match both Coniston’s Coach and Manager personally congratulated me on Russell Vale’s “pass & move” style of football. They went on to say we were the first team they have come up against that didn’t play “kick & rush” and that I should keep going because one day they will be a really good team (it’s worth noting Coniston were Division I last season).
Having lost four of the first six games the confidence of the Cobras is bound to be low but it’s a good life experience for them. How they react to life’s setbacks is important, it shapes them for adulthood. As Coach I will continue to encourage the kids to learn and work hard at training, their performance is what we measure them on and eventually the results will follow.
Please don’t forget there is training tonight and the game next Saturday is away to Helensburgh (top of the league), doesn’t get any easier does it?