Rd 1 U14G v Coledale

Our first game of the Year saw us play a willing and enthusiastic Coledale side on Friday evening at the Russell Vale cauldron- Cawley Park. The Team was very excited heading into the first match and were keen to put in a good performance in front of a healthy home crowd.  
The 1st half was an evenly matched affair and had we been able to take our chances we could of gone into the break 3 or 4 nil up rather than being down 1 goal. After the break Coledale got an early goal and took them 2-0. Their goal (as with alot of their goals) came against the run of play and it is something that we will have to improve over the coming weeks- that is to hold our formation and shape when attacking and defending and being prepared for the quick counter attack.
With the crowd (and coaches) willing the girls on, they pressured the Coledale goalie- who to her credit- managed to save everything that came her way, until Jade finally got one past her and put the Vale back in the game. At 2-1 and with the momentum shifting our way Mark and I were quietly confident of a grand stand finish- unfortunately it wasnt to be as Coledale got a couple of late goals to blow out the scoreline to 4-1, which was not reflective of the evenness of the 2 sides and how close the game was. But as they say- that is football and sometimes these sort of games go your way and other times they dont. The Coledale coach was somewhat apologetic after the game and commented on the fatc that the game could of gone either way.
Whilst the scoreline flattered our opposition and was an obvious disappointment to our girls, there were alot of positives to come out of the game.
Our Forwards in Chloe, Alyse and Paige combined well and were unlucky not to score on a few occasions. Paige, one of our off season signings displayed great pace and will be a real handful for opposing defenders over the coming weeks. Chloe, who mainly played in our defensive line last year, relished the chance of playing up front and continued her good form from Wednesday’s night’s trial. Alyse, as always was dangerous and held the ball up well and always had the opposition defenders on the back foot and in two minds with what she was going to do next.
Our Mid field of Ashleigh, Jasmine and Jade all worked tirelessly in attack and defence and all got some neat passes away at different stages of the game. Ashleigh another new recruit, was a revelation at centre mid and spectators watching wouldnt of believed it was her first ever game of soccer! Her pace and fitness level were a highlight and as she gets to know the game and her position better, she will be hard to contain for our opposition over coming weeks. Jasmine and Jade combined well with our forwards and worked back well to help defenders. they didnt stop running all game and gave their all right to the final whistle!
Sarah, Meg, Kylie, Mel and Mia were all strong and cleared the line well from the back of the field on most occasions. With Kylie and Mel playing their first game and Mia back playing after a couple of years they all performed well and will all improve as a defensive”unit” over coming weeks. Sarah and Meg (who was our captain this week) both played well and picked up where they left off from their good performances last year.
Hannah who played goalkeeper in the 1st half was solid as ever and her booming kicks set up many of our attacking raids, Kylie who played there in the second half will be better for the run and did a good job for her first ever time in goals.
All in all it was a good first up performance and one that Mark and myself and I am sure all parents were extremely proud off. That being said, we know there is work to do in certain areas and that is what we will be focusing on in training over coming weeks. With the right attitude a little more self belief and more emphasis on certain skills at training, this year will be an enjoyable and succesful one for the under 14 girls and one that Mark and myself are very much looking forward to.
Lastly, thank you to all the parents who helped out with Canteen and Ground duty on the night. Many hands make light work and it was great to see most parents jumping in and helping out where possible- lets keep up the good work and if you didnt get a chance to help out this week- don’t dispare, your turn will come over coming home matches!
Yours In Football.

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