The Trafalgar Victory FC Under 16 Boys played their Monash counterparts at Trafalgar for their fourth round LVSL match.
The game started exactly where the lads left off from their precious match. The ball was being moved efficiently and there appeared to be plenty of space all over the pitch. Tobby Budd was distributing the ball well in the centre of the park, Michael Judd and Nic Tammes were combining well on the left side of the pitch and the backline was holding strong, repelling all opposing advances.
It took only a mere five minute for Calum Stewart to bisect the Monash defence via a killer pass that setup Logan Winter with a one on one with the Monash Keeper. Logan calmly avoided the keeper and scored to give Trafalgar a great start to the game. All looked set for a smooth day at the office and the Victory were ticking all the boxes in the early stages of the match. Whilst on the topic of Calum and Logan, congratulations to both players for making the LVSL Under 16 Country Championship squad!
To Monash’s credit, they kept their heads up and worked hard to get back into the match. Where there once was space, the Trafalgar boys now found contest after contest. The sure touch and control of the TVFC team was replaced with rushed disposal and poor decision making. The backline was soon under the pump and the speed of the Monash strikers was causing great headaches for the Trafalgar backline. Eventually Monash capitalised on poor play from Trafalgar scored not once, but twice. The half time score had Monash leading 2-1.
A few blunt words were stated by the TVFC Coach Mark during the half time break. Mark was extremely frustrated by his team’s style of game and addressed a few issues with his team at half time.
To the boys credit the start of the second half had more urgency and purpose. The team was moving the ball better and linking more passes together. Calum Stewart provided striker Flynn George with a couple of quality scoring opportunities. Unfortunately for Flynn, his left foot isn’t quite the same standard as his right and he wasn’t able to find the back of the net.
Michael Judd moved to centre midfield, releasing Toby Budd to the wing. The moved seemed beneficial to both players and the team, until Michael was injured via a somewhat agricultural tackle. Meanwhile Hamish Brace played a controlled and skilful game on the right side of the park, linking well with the ever reliable Lachy Burke.
The Trafalgar team was on the attack and making all the play. To be honest, player for player the TVFC team looked the good on paper and should have made more of the opportunities presented to them. It wasn’t for a lack of effort, but the lads just couldn’t find the back of the net. Eventually Monash conceded a penalty due to a handball in the box. Nic Tammes stepped up to the spot and calmly converted the penalty to tie the game up at 2 goals apiece.
With only a handful of minutes to go, both teams were desperate to win the match. Trafalgar had attack after attack and Monash too were dangerous on the counter attack. In fact they almost scored for a third time had defender Michael Wallace not made a miracle reflex save on the goal line. Michael’s leg shot out of nowhere to deny Monash a third and match winning goal. Nice one Mick!
In the final minute of the game Logan made a break along the wing and carried the ball into the box avoiding at least three defenders in the process. He looked to shoot and was ankle kicked by the opposition causing him to stumble. All at the ground were awaiting the resulting penalty, however the officiating referee didn’t see the incident serious enough to award a penalty. When the final whistle blew all the boys were a little disappointed with the result as was the coach who described the match as a wasted opportunity.
There were many reasons why the team didn’t finish the match with a win. Some out of our control, but many were indeed by our own doing or making. Coach Mark is looking to work on transition and passing during training this week in order to regain the form of the first two rounds.
Goal scorers: Logan Winter & Nic tames
Award winners: Jump & Climb – Lachlan Smith, BK’s – Michael Judd
Better players: Lachlan Smith, Josh Porter, Lachlan Burke, Calum Stewart, Michael Judd & Nic Tammes