No away day blues!!
By Fraser Mee
Early start ..........
..... but not a sleeping performance.
Bloxham made the short journey to Easington Recreation Ground to face Banbury Utd Youth Spencer. With an earlier kick-off, the boys could have been forgiven for a slow start. But they were out of the blocks quicker than Usain Bolt! It didn't take long for Josh B to have the first effort at the home goal, but on this occasion it flew wide. Moments later, the boys had the advantage ......... Josh B, broke down the left towards the home by-line. Before pulling the ball back into space, for the advancing Harry C to run onto. The home keeper decided to rush out and jump in feet first (a poor challenge) and the this resulted in the ball ricocheting to Tom W, who coolly slotted home from centre of the area (0-1). The game was delayed for a few minutes, whilst Harry received treatment after this challenge. Bloxhams strength, started to show through as they took control of the game and they created chances for Tom W, James and Archie. This pressure finally told, as Tom W picked up a loose ball in the Banbury are and punished the home side with a clinical finish (0-2). The Bloxham defence was standing strong, dealing with the toothless attack of the home side and Carson had little to do, other than keep warm. It was at this point, the visitors were forced to make an change to the defence. Archie F, went into a tackle strongly with a Banbury player and with both players kicking the ball at the same time ........ somehow Archie ended up slipping on the ball and bouncing his head of the turf with a loud 'THUD'. After several minutes of treatment, Archie got to his feet and was replaced by Freddie. As a precaution Archie took no further part in the match. This delay, only seemed to spur the visitors on and they picked up the pace, with chances being created, but getting caught offside too often. Finally, Bloxham increased their lead though James W. Picking up a loose ball in his own half, he flicked past a defender and into space ..... running towards goal, the home keeper again came rushing out to close the space. But James, calmly and clinically guided the ball past the advancing player and into an empty net (0-3). As the half continued, Bloxhams passing and movement were causing the home side to struggle to get any ball and this allowed the boys to go further ahead. The two Tom's, (Tom W & Thomas M) exchanged passes on the Bloxham right, before an attempted through ball to Harry C was cut out and bounced to Aiden J on the edge of the home area. With a touch to control the ball, he then let fly with a thunderous shot into the far corner, giving the keeper no chance (0-4). HT 0-4
With the match well in hand, James, George and Thomas M all made way at halftime for Harry G, Ismaeel and Jakob (who took the Captains arm band from Thomas). With a reshuffle defence and midfield, the home side started to get more of the ball - without really threating the visitors goal. The first chances of the 2nd half all fell to Bloxham, with both Harry G and Josh trying their luck from distance. As the half progressed, Banbury at last started to put pressure on the visitors defence and goal, but these were being dealt with some solid challenges and tackles by Jakob and Ismaeel. Finally, the home side managed to pull a goal back ....... a well struck shot from the edge of the visitors area, flew past the diving Carson and clattered of the bar, back to an attacker. Getting quickly to his feet, Carson closed the down the striker and they collided heavily as the Banbury player nodded the ball into the net (1-4). Carson received treatment for several minutes, before the coaches decided to replace him as a precaution. Adien J took over the keepers jersey and Georg F, returned to the game. Despite this change, the home side never really threated to get back in the game. The Bloxham defence repelled everything that the homes side the threw at them. Even when they were forced to make another change ...... this time Ismaeel need treatment after making a solid, last ditched tackle (replaced by Thomas M). With the game drawing to a conclusion, there was still time for Bloxham to have efforts on goal. The first cam direct from a corner on the Bloxham right. Thomas M, floated the ball in close to the goal and it started to dip over the keeper and towards the far corner ....... only to drift the wrong side of the bar. With the next corner, Thomas again float the ball over and it was met by Tom W, who headed in at the far post. Only for the goal to be ruled out, for a challenge on the home keeper by a Bloxham player (a rather harsh decision). FT 1-4
A solid performance by Bloxham, continuing the good start to the season. Good news was that all the players that were taken off after treatment were ok and should be fit for the next match.