|07/01/2023||14:00||West London Veterans Football League||2022-2023|
Somewhere under the rainbow
was a place in the quarter final
It took two excellent goals on 51m and 82m to overcome a dogged Civil Service team on a wet and windy day in Chiswick.
The game started with Ascot playing against very strong wind and rain. It was difficult for both sides to play a lot of quick football but Ascot did give it a very good go. Sam had a couple of half chances in the first 5 minutes but you sensed this was going to be a close game. There were a few really good passing moves that gave a couple of opportunities for Ascot to take the lead. Playing that level of football on a very demanding surface in such weather conditions showed the level of quality on display.
Civil Service began to apply some pressure and a string of well taken corners required very good defending to keep out. A Civils free kick on the edge of the box was clipped in and Jamie reached high to flick it over the bar. Good first save on debut. Another chance presented itself for Civils but was blasted over the bar. Ascot looked at their best in the middle third moving the ball with speed and accuracy. It was a little harder to do this in the final third with Civils sitting quite deep. When Ascot got the ball into Sam or Adams feet then opportunities came to the fore. Rob got in and forced a very good save from the keeper. A free kick by Rob just cleared the bar after Adam was pulled down following an excellent turn that left his marker with no other choice. John picked the ball up about 30 yards out and drove past his man then drilled a shot just wide. A few more very good moves in the conditions but Ascot could not make a breakthrough in the first half. (HT 0-0)
Neil came on for the second half and it was good to see him back on the grass after a few months out with a nasty injury. His pace became another weapon for Ascot to exploit. Five minutes into the second half and Ascot got the goal their play had merited and an excellent goal too orchestrated and finished by Tim. He drove forward and played the ball in, at pace, to Sam. Sam set it beautifully for the on rushing Tim who cracked a first time shot into the corner. Whistled past the keeper.
Perhaps that was going to be the goal that broke the Civils dam. But no, Civils continued to sit deep and they also had a threat on the break too. Jamie made two excellent saves in one on one situations, the second resulting in an acrobatic off the line clearance by JK. Garyth, Stu B and Tommo all came on to give Ascot a little more energy. Garyth created a lot of dangerous stations from wide on the right. There were a number of breaks threatened by Civils but Wooz was on hand to snuff out most of their efforts. On the hour the ball was cleared out of the Civils defence and taken by Neil who drove forward and fired a shot just wide of the post with the keeper just watching it. Great connection.
The winner came in the 82 minute and was started on the right by Garyth retaining possession and playing inside. Clever interplay involving Stu B and he released Stu T in acres of space on the left. Stu T put in an absolutely fantastic cross to the far post and Sam rose to smash a header into the roof of the net. Another excellent goal and the game settled.
Into the hat for the quarter finals. Good to see Wooz and Sam come through a full 90 minutes. Also great to see Jamie make such a good debut in goal.
Team : Burgess, Ferdinand, Woozley(c), Keough, Underwood, Nutter, Standing T, Tanfield, Saunders, Moroney, McIntyre, Corbett, Birkett, Brant, Tomlinson