Muhammad Mahdi Panju
Mohamed Mahdi Janmohamed
Jameel Walji (C)
Husayn Yahya Merali
Muhammad Mahdi Dewji
The cup match. Finally here, the long awaited bout against long time rivals Chalfont at home. However, we were instantly met with an issue, with the referee refusing to officiate due to the nets not being put up.
Despite this, our manager Hussein uncle stepped in and reffed, and we were soon underway.
Having known we can go toe for toe against this team, we opted for an attacking 4-3-3, although , due to illness we had no subs, so we were disadvantaged from the get-go.
The game began and we struggled, failing to match the intensity and discipline off the other team. Both teams were at once wary of the muddy pitch and despite the resurgence of our team, another sloppy goal allowed Chalfont to poke their way in front.
Their lead quickly doubled from an unchallenged, unmarked header, leaving Stanmore struggling. Despite a header off the line by Husayn, Stanmore went into the break 4-1 down, Jameel dispossessing a defender and slotting in to be the only silver lining to a downcast cloud.
Second half began, with a new spirit after a half time talk. The game had all the feeling of a derby; broken-up game, plenty of choice words exchanged and tackles to match. Tempers flared after many incidents, whether it have been a missed penalty, or a unnoticed shove in the back.
Abbas uncle’s premonition of 5-4 in mind, Stanmore quickly began their comeback story, Zia brilliantly nodding in a Husayn Yahya cross. Zia quickly doubled for a brace with a lovely solo effort. The game was well and truly on.
Well and truly riled up, both teams were clearly in the zone. Celebrations ensued when the comeback was finished, Sami slotting in with his left foot to come back level. 10 minutes to go – 4-4.
Yet the plot line was not over. After much insults from the side, the impressive stand in referee finally had to respond, and there was a 10 minute break in which both teams and respective parents cooled down.
There was still one last twist however. It was not the fairy tale SJ would have wished when they entered the second half, as unmarked, their striker buried bottom corner in the last minute of the game.
Despite two goal line clearances from them, we could not provide the nail in the coffin that would have sunk this Chalfont team, and we, heartbroken, bowed out of the competition given it our all in an entertaining and dramatic game of football.
Match report by Sami Merali