Congleton Rovers JFC

Congleton Rovers JFC
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  • Sol Cockayne (Manager)

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  • Gareth Jackson (Assistant)

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U13 White - Match Report

Late Drama

(Sol Cockayne 21/11/2019)

4    Congleton Rovers JFC U13 White
4    Winsford Colts FC U13 Athletic

(Match Date: Sunday 17th November 2019)
This week, Rovers hosted Winsford, the reverse fixture from last week. After all the rain, the pitch was in surprisingly good condition, there were no doubts that the game would go ahead.

Rovers were looking to strike back after losing such a close game previously.

Rovers started the game with attacking intent. Taylor, Williams and Gill all looked to give Rovers an early lead. Supported by Machin and Painter, Taylor and Williams both managed to get shots away, going narrowly wide on both occasions. It wasn't long before the attacking play paid off as Taylor, cutting from the left, curled a low effort into the far corner. Rovers deserved their lead and continued to work with a high intensity. Jackson was working extremely hard in the middle to regain the ball and recover any loose passes. Once he had regained the ball, his mission was to drive the team forward as well as shielding Crewe and Foden.

Painter played the ball around the middle well and after linking up with Machin, the ball found itself through to Williams who calmly put it away making the scoreline 2-0. This goal means that Taylor and Williams have now scored 22 goals between them this season, a wonderful achievement and one that they deserve.

This second Rovers goal seemed to bring Winsford to life. Having the larger share of possession really put Rovers under pressure to defend their lead. Whitehead made some exceptional tackles seeing the ball out of play. However, Rovers were struggling to play the ball with any purpose, their efforts to attack Winsford faded away. Winsford hit the post with a driven effort from just inside the box, it came from a through ball which was eventually given offside.

After dealing with the pressure so well, Rovers were unfortunate to concede a well-worked effort. After the goal Rovers began to get a grip of the game, they responded well and began creating a number of chances, they were unlucky not to score a third. While Rovers enjoyed a spell of possession, Winsford won the ball back and launched a counter-attack. The defence looked as if they had dealt with the situation well before a wonder strike stunned the team. A curling shot from distance swung towards the far post, nothing that keeper Rowe could do about it. The Winsford equaliser was the last action of the first half, Rovers felt hard done by after letting their two goal lead slip.

As the players got into position, captain Jackson gathered the Rovers team up for some last-minute words of encouragement. Both teams began to cancel each other's effort out, Gill made some exceptional runs and managed to get the ball into the box, Winsford defended well and cleared the ball away from danger. The end to end game saw both teams displaying their attacking and defensive abilities.

It was Winsford who broke the deadlock and took the lead for the first time. Rovers failed to clear a corner and some confusion meant that Winsford could smash it home from close range.

Prince-North, Mills and Price all put maximum effort in to try and stop any further Winsford goals, they did an exceptional job in cutting out the wing play that had previously undone the team. As Rovers got into their groove and began to focus on equalising they were caught out on the counter-attack, another well-worked goal gave Winsford a 4-2 lead.

Refusing to lie down, Rovers reset and remained calm. They had 20 minutes to pull something magical out of the bag against a Winsford team that had won 5/6 league games this season. Unlike the previous game, Rovers had substitutes available which meant that they could maintain a certain energy level. With the unwavering support of the parents and the belief the manager had, Rovers just needed a spark.

Rovers got the spark they needed from the back, Rowe made his best save of the season so far by saving a thunderous shot that was flying towards the top corner. The save pumped belief back into the players as they began to dominate the game. A run of 5 well hit Taylor corners caused issues for Winsford, the 5th was knocked down into the area and Gill found himself in a wonderful position to smash the knockdown home and pull a goal back.

The Rovers goal swung moment back in their direction. With under 2 minutes left the players gave everything, Painter, Machin and Jackson forced Winsford into making mistakes with their relentless pressing. Williams dropped deep to crowd Winsford out as they tried to keep possession high up the pitch and see the game out. With seconds left, the deep pressing paid off as the midfield regained the ball, the team attacked together and sprinted towards the Winsford goal. Flying down the left, Taylor cut in and played a ball across the six-yard box where Gill flew in and smashed home for his second. The last gasp equaliser from 4-2 down sparked wild celebrations as the team secured a well-deserved point with the last action of the game.