It was 9am on a very chilly winters day – definitely one of the coldest days the boys have played this season. The coaches get the boys doing some warm-ups whilst the parents helped set-up the pitch.
After a brief discussion with the opposing coach they agree to split the game in 4 quarters of twelve mins.
It is a cup game which brings its own excitement – Last season Eagles had won the league and the boys were keen to add to their trophies. After some brief instructions from Jamil & Nazir the game kicked off at 9:30.
Eagles start well – Ali, Abbas and Zain combine well and got themselves a corner very quickly. Corner from Zain, first shot from Ali but the ball goes slightly wide.
Eagles continue to apply pressure and keep the ball in the Tigers half who are defending well. Eagles get themselves another corner with the opposition getting tackles in – Zain takes another corner – It comes out to Zaki – Two touches and take a powerful shot into the corner. Goalkeeper dives trying to keep it out however its very well hit and into the corner. 1-0 to Eagles.
Eagles are feeling confident now and playing well – looking for the 2nd goal. Fantastic build up play which includes many of the team – Adam to Abbas, Abbas to Zaki, Zaki to Zain – A nice weighted pass – They are playing well but the opposition is defending well – blocking, tackling – The ball comes out to Abbas R who gets a shot in quickly just as the Goalkeeper is looking to come out – The ball hits the back of the net – Great shot from Abbas 2-0 to Eagles.
Eagles start well – Jaabir, Adam and Hussein keeping it tight at the back with the team feeling like they can add to this lead. – Continue to pressure. Great goal from Zaki who drifts in from the left picking up a pass from Ali and volleys the ball into the top right corner beyond the keepers reach. 3-0 to Eagles
Both team playing in the middle and trying to get the ball to their strikers. Adam puts in a few good tackles in as Eagles start to dominate and put the pressure on. Eagles feel like they are getting closer to score but the opposition are defending in numbers and finally manage to break away and they have their best chance of the game – They get through the middle of the park and get a good shot in – Ammar Hussain manages to get his hand on the ball and palm it away.
Eagles keep the pressure up with the ball in the Legacy half and the Eagles winning three corners in a row. The pressure pays off as another attack sees the ball fall kindly for Abbas R which he strikes cleanly, it deflects off a defender wrong footing the keeper into the back of the net. 4-0 to the Eagles.
Tigers get their first real chance and feeling like they can get back into this start to apply pressure. They finally they get rewarded for their effort. The ball breaks away for their striker on the edge of the area – who hits the ball hard into the corner – Ammar H dives, gets his finger tips to it but could not stop the ball going in. 4-1. Well deserved goal for Tigers who have started this quarter well.
Eagles playing with a lot more confidence. Hussein and Jabir have been solid at the back – Jaabir picks up the ball and runs down the wing, he passes out to Hassan; who then gets it out to Ali linking up well with Zain who pulls back and hits a great shot which goes slightly wide. Unlucky – It was a very good shot and deserved a goal.
SJFA once again start applying the pressure and getting shots on goal. Next Hassan who also manages to get a clean powerful shot on goal but once again hits the side netting.
This has been a good quarter for the Eagles and we still have quarter of the game to go.
Final quarter follows the same pattern of play with SJFA trying to force another goal with the Tigers trying hard to limit their chances. Great pass down the line from Hassan to Zayn who just runs out of space as he tries to cross it.
Tigers start another attack but once again Jabir puts in a great tackle and then runs up the line puts in an nicely weighted cross which just misses Ali and gets through to Zain who try’s to control the ball but just runs away from him.
SJFA finally manage to get a deserved 5th goal – Hussein goes down the wing, lays off to Abbas who has quick feet goes past 2 players and hits a lovely shot pass the goalkeeper – very good team goal and well deserved. Abbas gets fouled as he scores his hat trick – He is in a bit of pain. We have short break as he gets looked at – He is fine and we play on. 5-1 to Eagles.
Both Eagles and Tigers tiring now and the game getting a bit sloppy – Bad tackles and mis-passes for both teams. Tigers seeing more of the ball however cannot force any real clear cut chances.
This pattern continues for the remaining quarter and finally the referee blows his whistle. Good game. Well-deserved victory for the Eagles who started off very well but did look like tired as the game went on – Something for the coaches to work but overall Eagles will take 5-1 victory and look forward to the next round of the cup!!
Written by Sibtain Lalji U9 Parent.