Goals: Fortnum A. (3), Woolhead B., Woolhead S., Heiko
Man of the Match: Antony Fortnum
Match Report: Boon
BC Team Sheet
Goal: Kieran Turnbull
Defence: Andrew Marshall / Steve Hodge / John Rennie / Mark Fortnum
Midfield: Mike Hughes / Mark Bakker / Kieran Harlowe / Boon / Chris Firth /
Heiko – emergency recruit
Forward: Anthony Fortnum / Adrian Plevin / Sam Woodhead /
Barry Woodhead - emergency recruit
MIA: Matt Mason, Steve Gillespie
It took BC 22 minutes to open the scoring, with Sam W racing down the left before squaring for Anthony F to sweep the ball into the back of the net. BC doubled the lead on 35 minutes as Anthony glanced home from Sam 50/50 ball challenge with Premier FC centre back. 2-0 HT
The 3rd goal was scored right from the 2nd half KO. A beautiful build up play from BC defence to midfield before Sam W slalomed his way into the penalty box, and then picked out Barry with a simple tap in (3-0).
BC continued to create chances with Sam and Barry both trying their luck till Heiko and Mark had one two exchange which saw Sam picked up a through ball from Mark (4-0).
Anthony’s hat-trick was resulted in a long throw from Kieran T from the edge of his own box to Heiko before he passed a through ball to Anthony F to slot home another convincing goal (5-0).
Mike H on the left in particular was given acres of space to deliver crosses. Chris F corner crosses often threaten Premier FC defence. Mark B and Kieran H midfield partnership was evidence right from the start when they both pressed hard and won most of the balls. BC 2nd half emergency recruit – Heiko, his presence was immediate felt after he came on and had enough space in midfield till he picked his spot from Premier FC corner clearance, into the right corner, well out of their keeper’s reach (6-0)
Solid defensive displays from the back four. John R in particular was having a flying game where all the Premier FC attacks were well read and tackled.
BC would not have a clean sheet if we did not have Kieran T in goal. Save on shots, punch and catch on corner crosses, kick and throw with confidence.
Several MOM contenders up from grab in particular Mark B, Kieran H and Heiko all there were excellent in midfield. Sam W and Anthony F up front and John R in defence, but the MOM goes to Anthony Fortnum for his hat-trick.
Goals: Steve Gillespie
Man of the Match: Steve Gillespie
Match Report: Dan Spencer
It was a typical start for BC 3rds team, 5pm came around and only 4 players from the opposition team had turned up.
A few more people turned up and we eventually kicked off around 5.20. They were only able to field 9 players so we knew the type of game we needed to play: use the extra space and strike early.
In the first 10 minutes, BC moved the ball around creating a few opportunities up front with Adrian putting plenty of pressure on them in the box. We continued the pressure, which saw 4 consecutive corners, well delivered by Paul’s right boot but none seem to connect.
Within 10 minutes, the rest of the opposing team members arrived and we were back to an even playing field. Unfortunately BC’s passing let us down at times and we weren’t able to get the early lead we were hoping. With a full side, the opposition started playing more attacking football but thanks to the solid defending from our back four, Andrew, Grant, Steve G and Roger, they weren’t able to make much of it.
First round of substitution took place which saw Paul D, Boon, Luigi and Mark on replacing, myself, Elliot, Jason and Captain Marshall.
Luke and Paul continued to disrupt them in midfield which kept us in their half. The continued pressure paid off which created another corner. This time is was Boon who took the corners and delivered an accurate ball into the middle of the box. The ball deflected off one of their opponents, pin balling around until Steve G managed to connect and send it into the back of the net. 1-0 to BC. There was a lot of speculation about which part of the body the ball came from, however I was on the sideline and can confirm it hit anywhere between his hip and his ankle. No doubt it came of one of his calves that are the size of baby cows.
It wasn’t long after that we saw another opportunity from a free kick. Steve G skillfully chipped the ball over the top of the defense for Adrian, however his shot going just wide of the post.
The second half started with three more substitutes: Ken Reid moved into central defense, Captain Marshal back into left back , Jason came on as right back and I was back into left midfield giving Roger, Boon, Luke and Adrian a break. BC seem to let them dominate the game, allowing a number of shots at goal and numerous crosses into our box. Thanks to our trusty keeper Chris Pardey nothing came of it.
We continued to battle it out in midfield with both teams seeing the ball move quickly from one end to the other. Elliot caused problems for their defense on numerous occasions taking on 2 or 3 defenders at one time. Our best chance came from a shot from Elliot, which was deflected of their player and created a corner. Boom sent in another fantastic ball to the far post which connected with an unmarked BC player (yours truly), who had an open goal but managed to send it just wide of the post. By far our closest chance in the second half.
Our opponents hit back and attacked down the left hand side, cutting it back into midfield where one of their players was unmarked and decided to take a shot from at least twenty yards out. Our keeper tried desperately to jog back but unfortunately the ball glided over his head and into the back of the net.
After about 20 minutes the battle in midfield obviously took its toll as Luigi’s went down in pain clutching he hamstring. It was clearly a serious injury as Luigi took his time to get up, eventually needing to be assisted off the pitch by our support staff (the injured Steve Hodge). Roger came back on and moved into midfield. It wasn’t long until we were hit by another injury as Paul Davies’s substituted himself also with a sore hamstring. Luke came back into midfield.
BC started to attack with Luke and Roger causing problems down the right. Adrian eventually came back on and he and Elliott continued to cause problems up front and challenge them in the box creating a number of corners. Unfortunately, we didn’t capitalize.
The game continued with both teams seeing opportunities wasted. Towards the end, the opposition had more chances than us hitting the post on one occasion. Credit to Ken ‘the enforcer’ Reid’s defensive tactics, which clearly started to frustrate their striker who couldn’t handle the heat. It paid off, this individual was rattled and missed a golden opportunity to take the lead.
In the end we had to settle for 1-1 draw. There were moments of solid football from BC, but I think we’d all agree it was some poor passing at times that let us down.
A few individuals stood out for MOM. Luke as always, played a solid game in midfield creating many chances up front. Grant hardly let a thing get through the back gate and Roger was everywhere. But, we can’t look past the only goal of the match and some solid defending by Steve G who gets the MOM award this week.
Goals: Adrian Plevin
Man of the Match: Paul McNamara
Match Report:Adrian Plevin
Another league match against a team we had beaten before Old Boyz United (OB’zs), who comprise a somewhat dis-organized group of teenagers and twenty something’s – their name may indicate that old is the new young?
We kicked off a little late against about 9 OB’zs, the others being held up, but after about 10 minutes it was 11 against 11 and despite BC totally dominating this period and indeed the first 45 minutes we failed to score. Chances were created especially by Chris Kelly and Steve Gillespie who came within 10 yards of making it two goals in two weeks and it was surely only a matter of time before BC broke the deadlock?
However in a rare foray into our half OB’zs played a tame cross from the right, which a host of BC goalies and defenders missed, resulting in Andrew Marshall claiming his second goal of the Dragon year – sadly at the wrong end of the pitch.0-1 to the OB’zs,
With BC confident that this was a mere blip on our route to victory the half time talk was about our dominance in the game, keep going as we were and the goals would come.
The second half started fairly well, but OB’zs gained confidence from their goal and became more threatening. However this shouldn’t have lasted as one of the OB’zs main play makers was lucky not to be shown red after running one on one onto goal and Kung Foo kicking our goalie Kim hard in the midriff, with the ball clearly not his target. The ref allowed him to play on and from memory awarded only a freekick to BC.
This proved costly with OB’zs scoring a second shortly after from a corner, thanks to a dubious double act – one of their players bundled Kim into the net at the front post, leaving the afore mentioned Kung Foo King free at the back post to prod home. – No justice with the ref missing two injustices now.
But the BC 3rds are hardy and kept pushing in an attempt to right a wrong score line. Our goal eventually came from a nice move down the right, with the silky Chris Firth playing the through ball to Adrian Plevin down the wing somewhere near the halfway line, and after a bit of a run Adrian cut past the defender saw the goalie off his line and slotted in 1 – 2 and game on.
The last 15 minutes or so saw lots of pressure and effort from BC and it could easily have been a draw or a win. But luck was not on our side and OB’zs scored from a breakaway goal, I’m sure the Kung Foo King was involved somewhere adding further to our sense of injustice. Final score BC 1 – OB’z 3.
As always in a team of hard workers man of the match is hard to call – notable performances were Chris Firth with some nice touches down the wing, Steve Gillespie indomitable in defence using his superior strength to tame their attack and having another shot towards goal!! and Chris Kelly who adds skill to his and the teams brawn. However for an energetic and controlling performance in midfield, chasing some young old boyz my MOM is Paul McNamara.
Goals: Chris Kelly (2)
Man of the Match: Steve Gillespie
Match Report: Andrew Marshall
A big storm just before kick-off put the game in doubt. Then we both turned up in white shirts (they are all kids from the American school but apparently ESPZEN have accepted they are too poor to buy a second kit!) so Adrian kindly offered to drive up an fetch some bibs for them. Then we had a bit of a tug-of –war with the 2nds over young Chris Kelly and so it was a relief to put all the “admin” to one side and attempt to play well on a very soggy pitch.
To be fair , we did very well for the first 20 minutes. Our physical size and determination saw us winning 50/50 and even 40/60 challenges. We used the wings well, where there was some evidence of grass to utilise, and we deservedly took the lead when Adrian set up Chris for a crisp finish.
No one watching this would have guessed at this stage that VR Eagles had not dropped a point all season, but it all changed in a rotten 10 minute spell with 3 really sloppy goals conceded and they also hit both posts in a mad muddy scramble as our defensive shaped disappeared.
However, the last 10 minutes of the half we ended strongly and Chris forced their keeper into 2 splendid saves but at half- time it was 1-3
I thought our second half display was fantastic. We dominated possession and crated loads of chances , despite conceded another soft goal to go 1-4 down. Chris got his second in fine style and after a 6 man passing move and we had a real purple patch with Chris again, then Justin with a fine header and even myself forcing their keeper into excellent saves…Everyone was pumped up and it was all one way traffic until their speedy left winger too off and crossed to their one striker who toe-poked past a surprised Ken and left us mulling over what a cruel game this can be.
A big thank you to everyone who played for us on Saturday –a real pleasure to be part of this team, despite losing, and thanks especially to Barry and Ken for donning the (borrowed) gloves in soggy conditions. I thought Chris Kelly was superb throughout upfront and Adrian as every offered yeoman support. I reckon Neil was the pick of our mid-fielders who all put in a big shift . David Byrne also helped out really well in centre mid after a couple of sessions at full back and Dan Spencer was awesome at the back –he would normally have been my choice of man of the match , but Steve Gillespie won this prestigious award in the end for winning so many tackles/headers .
Goals: MikeThornton (3), Andrew Reid (3)
Man of the Match: Jamie ThuillerMatch Report: Andrew Marshall
Coral Secondary School - Pasir Ris
Following the trek out to Pasir Ris with the odd thunder storm threatening the team gathered for a warm up and team talk by Capt Andrew. Plans were made for a goal keeping replacement as Ross was a late arrival, but the ref kindly waited for him to glove up and jump in between the posts!
The whistle blows and we start. The Old Boyz come at us quick and purposefully and Ross completes his warm up with picking the ball out of the net!
Questions were asked as the ball had gone out for a goal kick, only to be pulled back towards goal hitting the outside of the near side post, leaving the keeper stranded and bouncing to the centre of goal mouth for a easy tap in!
Play resumes and their no. 2 and Red shorts ( he was their only player in red shorts ) combined well to come through midfield and sliced the defence.
Rally calls were given. Let's get it together! Play resumes we manage to break forward but their defence breaks up the play and the ball comes at us again. Paul had to come of with a strain, with Jamie coming on in midfield with a shuffle with Mike ( who I believe was making his 3rds debut! ) moving in to the centre. We try to settle and take control. But again they come quick and it's...
With only 10 mins gone!
We finally manage to get the ball and play it around! Robin in the centre starts breaking up their play, we start winning the headers. Adrian and Andrew R start making a menace of themselves. Capt Andrew points out to the Ref that the Old Boyz are breaking league rules by not wearing shin pads. Ref stops play while they rectify. This breaks up their rhythm. Dan makes some great tackles at the back and we stop their plays forward and go on the attack. The pressure pays of and Andrew R slots home!
Although we are now more in control, they still make some dangerous breaks in to our half and some solid defending stop them and we allow our wingers to move forward and support the front men! Adrian jumps well for a high ball but clashes with one of their players who is left in bloody mess on the floor! It was a fair challenge and the Ref Drops Ball to restart the game once the player is removed from the pitch. We put the pressure on and from one of our corners Andy is hit late in the box and a Penalty is given. Mike steps up and slots home!
The team is playing well, harrying and pressing looking for an equalizer. But the next goal comes from the opposition with a quick break! Red Shorts creating their chances.
With only minutes left of the half we break and Andrew R neatly fires in from near the edge of the box. We go in only one down!
Half time was a pleasant affair with fresh cut orange shared around and a good team talk with a belief we can go on and win this one after our fight back so far even though we came in a goal down.
The second half kicks off with us confidently putting pressure on their goal, with only a few attempts forward from the Old Boyz. There is good link up play from Dan and Jamie on the left ending with the ball in the box with Andrew R on the prowl and he is brought down from behind – the Ref blows for a penalty. Andrew steps up confidently and blasts in to pull us level. Giving himself a well earned Hat Trick.
Us drawing level inspired the Old Boyz to try and regain the upper hand and they lobbed a few long balls up, which Ken and Andy dealt with. Jason kept the clever No. 2 in his pocket and we started going forward in numbers. Paul in the middle helps spread the ball about and our pressure led to a number of chances to take the lead. Justin managed to head over when it seemed easier to head it in and also fumbled a chance at the back post following a great cross from the left. It wasn’t until Mike broke into their box and shot across the keeper that our possession finally paid off and we took the lead for the first time.
We carry on piling on the pressure with only a few breaks from the Old Boyz which the defence and Ross commanding his area well to keep any danger out. We break with some nice play and the ball comes to Mike who runs at their goal and shoots from distance sealing the game for a superb victory.
Soon after, the whistle blows for the end of play.
Great performance coming back from a disastrous start. The team really pulled together!!!
Man of the Match is a hard one with two players fighting over the ball after getting Hat Tricks.
It goes to Jamie who worked hard on the left, getting back when needed and attacking with purpose and helping the two get their goals.
Goals: Adrian Plevin, Andrew Marshall
Man of the Match: Robin Thuiller
Chapter 1 – In the beginning…
….there was mud.
On a day when the 2hr torrential downpour could have only ever suited our opponents - The Singapore Swimming club, a group of the finest ever (ed licence) to hail from the British Club football section donning their speedos under strip set boot/fin on the hallowed squelch that is the Bukit Timah car-park thinly laid with sludge (in the rain and concrete in the dry).
This ladies and gentlemen was the Easter Cup !
The late afternoon scene…
- Toni, a lone man in the distance with large stick in hand aerating the goal mouth, quickly giving up as he discovered he couldn’t get through car park bays 15 – 16, so with what can only be described as a graceful hockey type swing (his usual 7 iron in from 140 now ruined for good) brushing water any way he could..
- 4 of us rescuing a goal abandoned in the centre.. another 4 finding one in the grass at the back of the field
- Chris, not comfortable with one sport only, randomly power sliding and bunny hoping (ed licence again) his mountain bike around the centre of the park
- John nominated time keeper setting his precision dials on the side
- The rest of us moving bags between the sidelines and the covers under the trees and back again depending on various Michael Fish type weather readings…..
Andrew Marshall in usual fashion pulled the squad together, what was it going to be this time? – the Captains call to arms, what did he know that we didn’t !?!?!?!?!
Marshalls words verbatim:
- Rights lads, it’s taken me all week to figure out that there are 3, or is it 2, no, no it’s definitely 3 match balls in the bag, and with all the decisions I’ve got to make in my position this is just too much! So first decision I’m going to make - Neil you’re ball boy today, there must be 3 balls in the bag at the end ok, well unless we lose any then there can be 2 or 1, ok ?
- Match report, um who hasn’t written one recently Jason… received many claps for well wishers - actually that’s rubbish – it was those wishing to be well portrayed
Initial comments distilling the squad with confidence.. Marshall had maybe done his prep this time…. so what else did he have in the bag….
Unbeknown to us, he had also recognised the ref for the day was none other than the infamous man mountain who’s last outing was when we played the Welsh. In that game he correctly awarded us a penalty decision on trip on Andrew Reid at the edge of the 6yd box, he followed the decision by a conducting and winning a swearing match against the Welsh appeal (lucky for him we weren’t playing the Irish!), then looking around a bit, up in the air for guidance and then back to the rubble, Moses like seeing the waters part, visualising, he located the penalty spot some 5 yards outside the South East edge of the penalty area and also allowed a wall….) – (Ed note:- writing part of another match report also so that counts as 2!). So with that knowledge a Black-Adder like cunning plan was brewing……
- Right then, up front James, Biggest Steve, Plev;
- In the mid lets pack it out with Jamie, Robin, Chris, Boon, Luke, Dan, Neil, Toni (1st half in goal now you’ve made it pretty); and
- Andrew, Roger (2nd half in goal – well played Rog!), Ken, Paul, Big Steve and Jason at the back.
And so we lined up….
Chapter 2 – Dream Start?
….or were we dreaming?
What a dream start, 3 consecutive moves down the right, Paul crossing first to find Marshall (yes, Marshall !!!) in the air heading in top left, 1-0, then Plev with a similar move from a Paul lofted cross again – In! bottom left 2-0. It could have been 3 but biggest Steves header narrowly over again from Paul “Beckham” Davies deft right foot.
With euphoria and the whole squad cheering as if “flying a squadron of Spitfires home seeing the white cliffs of Dover”, suddenly brought back to ground with a whistle. The ref hadn’t actually blown to start and the Swimming Club youth were looking somewhat bemused at our training ground furore
The ref looking skyward “another divine intervention sought from him” turned one way then another clearly not counting but relying on some more internal sense to guide his way. Squinting at the oppo and then back to us, back to them, us, them, us finally by critical mass he deduced there was something amiss. Had the ref been now been to spec savers?
Marshall pulled us together for some quick and effective decision making, it’s not going to work, lets get back to 11 then “up front just roll on and off, in the mid same and at the back we’ll just roll on and off – you decide who and when.” Again in admiration we all looked at each other – was this another masterpiece of tactics from Capt – delegation or empowerment? So with decisions flying in from all over the park 6 of us waded off.
What a game we now had in store – Such a game in anticipation had not been seen since Superstars days of Duncan Goodhew vs Kevin Keegan - 11 of the nations best 10k swimmers vs 11 of the BC’s multinational soccer stars. From my view on the sidelines given the state of the pitch we were more likely expecting John to turn into David Vine and the ref to play the part of Stuart Hall for some “It’s a knock out” fun, frolics and mud (Robin, Neil please show YouTube clips to Jamie and James)
Toni quick to respond to the now out of balance odds (again in true Battle of Britain fashion) converted his “manor” into suitable land and sea defences, trench, moat, trench, moat – you get the picture. Unfortunately whilst admiring his masterpiece he forgot to move quickly enough and got “stuck in the mud”. With the back four playing scissor paper stones to decided who would try and squeeze through his legs to free him, fortunately before big Steve had the chance to do him some personal damage with heritage on his side he managed to Flamenco his way free – phew lucky escape this time for both players.
With waved arm and a whistle the ref set us off. The BC 11 immediately camped in the oppos half for the first 10 mins – fair to say they were completely on the back flipper without answer. Some excellent runs by Jamie on the left creating space, Chris up and down on the right and the back four pushing forward left the oppos middle and front scrambling about chasing shadows – somehow our shots were either blocked or just flying wide on many occasions – cries of whoa as Biggest Steve with a left foot half-volley skimmed just over.. Another flowing 1,2,3,4 between Neil and Jamie left those on the sidelines wondering if they would / should? come on…
What ??!?!?!?!?! scandalously against the run of play a route-1 ball left their number 18 clear and with a strong drive from the edge of the 18yrd box to the bottom left past a “re-planted” Toni he netted.
BC picking their jaws from the floor rallied - again more end to end play but mostly in the middle. Our back four with rallying cries from big Steve and Ken pushed forward and in the midfield Luke with some calm and clever short game passes sent the rest of the squad into creative mode. Somehow again we couldn’t get the ball over the line. Playing on the top pitch with some of the game drifting in and out of the bottom pitch indicating that maybe the miracle we had declared earlier re the refs returned eye-sight was fundamentally flawed. This was immediately affirmed when 2 “goal-attack netball shot” thrown in’s from Capt were without penalty.
The game ebbed and flowed, number 18 again showing his high-board skills with a smooth swallow dive into a large puddle – their supporters offering a 8.5, 8.6 and shocking 7.4 but the ref neglected to score due to the ball already punted up in (and out of) play on the left. A few rolling subs later and Plev’s ruled out response due to an over the by-line cross (funny the ref could make that one up) was one of the most gutsy performances I have ever had the privilege to witness. A close contended for player of the year last year, Dan of recent fatherhood responsibility now confident the missus wasn’t just with him for his good looks put the BC’s quest for the first silverware of the season ahead of his own movie career. Their number 28 whipped past him down the wing, with a cry of “FOSTERS”, seemingly in slow motion Dan with a sliding face first in the mud “head tackle” in the way of the ball and wingers crossing boot – all 3 colliding with Dans mug rising the victor. Latterly he tried to tell me that in turning his left foot got caught behind his right leg and he just fell over…. what humility – Dan we all know the truth…. well played !
Another oppo break 5 vs 3, a lofted cross and a deft nod from their little number 8 this time...
0-2…. huh? Shocked and stunned half time was called.
Chapter 3 – 2nd Coming
The 2nd half started much as the first, battles in midfield this time with Toni out and Roger between the posts. As said Rog, like what you did with the place – the Mekong Delta look was pretty effective.
With even more gusto the BC squad played down the flanks with Boon right and Robin left, James and Jamie looking threatening and all the oppos through balls dealt with effectively by our backs. With a break down the left much similar to the oppos first it was with steady mind that James latched on and drove the ball low past their keeper.
1-2…. game on
After another 5mins with much mud wrestling in the park, a great save from Roger keeping us in it, followed a BC master class of quick one touch football that led to the 4th goal of the game. Jason tracking back to dispossess (Ed’s licence) their number 18 on a run through turned nimbly (love it !!!) and found Biggest Steve in the middle of the park a 1,2 in the middle and the ball was released down the left for a running on Jamie, pulling it back past the keeper for a Lineker ‘esq tap over by Adrian.
So, a day like this in normally going to be influenced by 1 man, and 1 man only….. their number 8’s…
Another speculative run saw number 18’s first touch strike from the end of the 18yd box skid past an on-rushing Rog – nothing any keeper could have done to save that one.
With an average age in the late 30’s early 40’s the BC’s days of “cumming” from behind twice in one day being long gone that was how the score stayed until the final blow of the game.
With so many true, gritty performances it is madly difficult to pick, but for 3 reasons:
1. Despite mine and Dan’s attempts to beat him, he was the muddiest mad on the pitch;
2. For huge commitment and numerous tackles in the midfield; and mostly
3. Given his son’s performances he is likely not to get a look in anymore
My MOM goes to Robin. (also he gave me the biggest clap at the start).
Frankly well played all – another tough and gritty performance against a young, fit squad. What does it take to beat those boys? In response Adrian’s conducting regular Sat mornings swimming classes – watch out for his Silver Speedo’s…. you have been warned.
- All of their numbers had 8 in them??? Maybe there is something to this Chinese number 8 business after all?
Goals: Robin Thuiller, Ken Reid, Steve Hodge (2), Henry
Man of the Match: Dan Spencer
Observing the opponents El Ibizia FC warming up, words like 'organized, under-25, skinny, quick, bit tricky with the ball' came to my mind. So notwithstanding BCT's deep experience pool, a 3pm kickoff on a blisteringly hot afternoon would suggest a challenging game. Ground conditions were good despite the heavy downpour in the morning and the pitch appeared some 10-15% smaller than usual - this would hopefully be to our advantage against a much younger and possibly quicker team.
Kick off on time. The first five minutes were scrappy with both sides trying to find rhythm. Only one eventful move from BCT in this stage - a through ball from Danny at center to Adrian running down the right flank and beating the offside trap. Adrian's shot just wide of the right post.
BCT got a lot more organized soon after and starting attacking frequently. Some deft touches from young Henry on the left, Robin mopping up the opposition clearances in central midfield and Chris and Adrian overlapping along the right flank on a number of forays deep into opposition territory. The first breakthrough for BCT came at the turn of 15 mins - a foul on Adrian saw Chris look a free kick from near the right sideline into the box which was met by a crisp low header by Robin. BCT up 1-0.
Then followed a spell of ‘an-attack-a-minute’ from BCT; defense and midfield frequently feeding Adrian, and subsequently Henry, for some 7 or 8 potshots just inches wide of sideposts. A curved instep from Robin also tantalizingly missed the top right corner of the opposition goal by a whisker.
At the half-hour mark Ken, I suspect getting impatient with all those close misses, decided to take a crack from distance and beat the opposition keeper who was standing off his line. The ball smacked the underside of the bar into the back of the net for BCT up 2-0.
By now the heat was beginning to take a toll on all on the field (and all off it as well - not a spot of shade to take shelter in on the sidelines either). BCT had a relative advantage in battling the heat with a bench of four substitutes while the opposition had none and were starting to wilt a bit.
BCT generally dominated the rest of 1H; Steve H added to the tally after receiving the ball from a couple of other shots parried off by their defense. He placed it low into the right corner of the goal and at half-time BCT were leading 3-0. No real tests for Ross in our goal who might have been getting a bit bored at times.
More of the same in the same in early 2H i.e. BCT dominating possession and attacking frequently. Robin, Danny, Dan, Luke (?) all making runs deep into opposition half and attempting shots from the top to the box. By now opposition was looking quite tired and ragged.
About an hour into the game, Chris kicked a long cross in from the left flank met by Henry sprinting into the box. Henry lobbed it in Messisque fashion with a lovely first-touch across the goal mouth into the top left corner. BCT up 4-0.
Within five minutes another one was added to our tally with some first-time passing in a move involving four or five players (that I cant recall!) - the move started with Steve G in defense and ended with the ball with Steve H unmarked about 10 meters away from goal. Their goalkeeper appeared transfixed by the inevitable while Steve H dispatched it to bulge the net and BCT leading 5-0.
At this stage, the opposition - either from depleting energy levels and/or ability to make an impact - changed strategy to hooking high balls from their goalkeeper deep into BCT half.
They did get one back at us though, more through luck than strategy in my view. An awkward bounce caught our defense line off-guard and while retreating to get organized, an unmarked striker ran into space inside the BCT box to convert a goal. BCT still leading 5-1.
But that was pretty much it as far as attacks at BCT went as our defense line went a little deeper. Playing the high ball into a line comprising of Andy, Ken, Andrew and Steve G would suggest El Ebizia have either some very fast feet or chaps who are seven feet tall - they unfortunately had neither. All subsequent high balls were comfortably headed away and the line never really looked under any threat.
The game wound down with a few stoppages as couple of opposition players kept collapsing with muscle cramps in the last five minutes of the game.
Overall a strong showing by BCT and I dare say the final scoreline might have been a lot bigger for us - some close misses and some questionable offside calls against us. The opposition were generally a sporting lot who despite being quite skilful individually could not quite lace a game strategy together. Everybody got a tan.
MOM suggestions - I'd say either Dan for a strong overall performance in defense in 1H + attack in 2H. Or Robin for being key in controlling the midfield (and opening the score sheet). Your call Andrew.
Goals: Robin Thuiller (2), Dan Spencer (2), David Byrne
Man of the Match: Dan Spencer
The afternoon started badly, after several years of avoiding goalkeeping and match reporting duty I was duly chosen as scribe as punishment for having failed to save my name on doodle.
On the pitch all look well; our vastly experienced squad was being compared to Barca and typical English playing conditions prevailed after heavy overnight storms although we would have preferred the puddles to be less than knee deep.
To off-set the likelihood of the (yet to arrive) ref being the oppo’s 12th man, BC tried to get one up by disguising Stephen Gillespie as the ref donned in a which shirt but to no avail as one of our Scottish contingent who was not part of the elaborate plan asked the ref to change his shirt in case one of his passes landed at the feet of a white shirt.
The ref finally turned up only 15 minutes late and only missed 5 minutes play, the early exchanges were even although BC were gradually taking the upper hand, Robin T was in his element slide tackling everything that moved much to the likening of the ref who seemed to smile eve time he slid through a puddle and forgot to blow his whistle, the ref was a rare breed, no sign of any bias and despite being almost a pitch’s length from the action on most occasions he did a good job of keeping the game flowing.
Eventually the stalemate was broken by Dan Spencer’s first goal for the club in 50+ appearances, nicely slotted in the corner (1-0), unfortunately a few minutes later our oppo were on level terms with their first real chance, Ross came racing out of goal as if had spotted a $100 note on the touch line only for the ball to get stuck in the swamp, the goal bound shot got suffered the same fate as it approached the line but they had two players racing to finish things off. (1-1)
Having dominated the game there was an obvious feeling of injustice which encouraged BC to play their best football of the match and following some ping pong in the box Dan Cooley slotted in his second inside the left hand post just before half time (2-1), just reward for Dan’s constant raids down the left wing..
With the last action of the half, Robin picked up the ball just in their half, a powerful run saw him inching towards the oppo’s box, and with news filtering in from the 2’s that his son had just scored a classy chip over the keeper, Robin duly slammed the ball in the top right hand corner from all of 30 yardss with our obliging ref allowing just enough time for us to go in 3-1, that being the last play of the 1st half.
Eager to start the 2nd half both teams were champing at the bit but no sign of the ref, from the comments prevailing from the eager BC contingent, none of which are suitable to put in print, the ref was having his own fun in one of the Port a loos’s, eventually he was out of the trap with a big smile, thrashing his vertically challenged legs through the swamp, a few deep breaths and we were under way.
After a period of further BT dominance, Robin came back into the fray eager to match his son’s two goal haul on the adjoining pitch, he duly obliged finishing of another good BT move (4-1) by this time BT had opted for a 3 man back line and with Stephen Gillespie mopping up the loose ball in front of the defense with good effect,
Another sweeping BT move saw David Byrne score our 5th goal with a powerful shot through the keeper only for IGS to score with the last kick of the match.
It was a good all-round display with some excellent passing moves despite the poor conditions; the team was well marshaled as usual by the skipper.
Dan grew with confidence as the game went on with a powerful display; Grant D had a strong display in an unaccustomed midfield role and along with Robin who was reminiscent of Dave Mackay at his best preventing their nippy forwards from getting to much ball.
MOM goes to Dan for an all-round impressive display as well as scoring his and our first two goals for BC.
Goals: Andrew Reid (2)
Man of the Match: Andrew Reid
Match Report:Christopher Cribb
Honors even on Saturday at Bukit Timah Road as BCFC 3rd XI contributed to an entertaining 2-2 draw against a decidedly younger Bakar Boplay team. The match also saw the return of striker Nick Groth to the fold after 14 months on the sidelines due to injury.
Boplay started the brighter of the two teams with neat passing through the midfield, making good use of their wingers and finding early overlaps to test BCFC 3rd XI goalkeeper John Leonard. However, early forays into the BCFC’s penalty area ultimately proved fruitless due to the experienced marshalling of veteran centre half Ken Reid. The Reid’s, both elder and younger, would continue to test Boplay’s attacking prowess and defensive resolve throughout the 90 minutes.
As BCFC settled 15 minutes into the first half and began to find their rhythm, attacking options were beginning to open up. Both Boon and Picciotti were busying themselves making good use of the wide channels releasing Groth and Reid ‘Younger’ for early chances. Groth in particular being unfortunate to see a near post effort parried by the Boplays shot stopper.
The midfield under the watchful eye of combative campaigner Jim (surname required) were kept busy all half chasing, closing down the opposition, creating space and opening the Boplays defense with incisive passing.
On 25 minutes, Captain Andrew Marshall signaled the substitutions which provided alternative attacking options for BCFC. Plevin’s height and aerial power in particular useful support to the energy and industry of Reid ‘Younger’
The 45 minutes closed with BCFC finishing stronger by virtue of late chances created with the teams locked at 0-0.
BCFC 3rd XI started the second 45 minutes with a lot more purpose and intent and chances came and went. On 60 minutes BCFC were rewarded for their endeavour as a result of fine interplay between Plevin and Reid ‘Younger’ with ‘Younger’ claiming the goal. 1-0.
This game never looked like a ‘1-0’ as both sides fought out a scrappy 10 minutes in the middle of the field that followed BCFC’s opening goal and it was Boplays that benefited on 70 minutes to make it 1-1 and game well and truly on.
Andrew ‘marshaled’ his defensive partners whilst under a spell of continued Boplays pressure with Reid ‘Elder’ claiming clearance header after clearance header almost ‘Gordon McQueenesqe’ rising above the Boplays strikers with majesty at times.
And it was with some injustice and confusion that Boplays were awarded a penalty for a seemingly innocuous challenge that was dispatched clinically to make it 2-1 to Boplays on 80 minutes.
With a thimble full of fuel left in the tank, feeling hard done by and with time ticking on, BCFC 3rd XI rallied once more with Henry-The-Even-Younger finding more time on the ball as aging legs began to tire.
But it was once again Reid ‘Younger’ who squared the match with well executed shot in the closes stages much to the relief of the team. 2-2.
Justice was indeed done.
And as they say, ‘it ain’t over until the fat bloke who finished runner up on Britain’s Got Talent 2012 sings’
Full Time: 2-2
Goals: Jake Smith, Jason Wood, Shane Byrne, Henry Skues, Robin Thuillier, Glen Williams
Man of the Match:Match Report: Glenn Williams
After a rainy day the sun finally came out for the game but the pitch was in its usual state. I thought the groundsman are supposed to put sand, not clay, in the puddles?
We lined up in our usual dominating positions, the tall slow guys at the back, the fast young guys at the front and everyone else in the middle.
The ref blew for the start of the game and we were faced with an early torrent of pressure. For 15 minutes the Facilities XI stroked the ball around playing some nice one two's from midfield although we managed to limit them to long shots which were either well saved by Ross or missed the target.
Then the BC 3rd's went on a 25minute purple patch. A series of stunning goals from our young forwards and dynamite midfield saw goals from Jake, Jason, Shane and Robin. All the goals were a series of intricate passing moves finished by fine shots at tight angles, if England have any more injuries or bereavements expect some phone calls for back-up from the BC! The half time whistle came too quickly as I am sure we would have continued in the same vein.
The key message at half time was "the game is not yet over - their forwards and midfield are dangerous, very important that we score the next goal". So of course within 10mins of the restart they had pegged a goal back, could we really lose a 4-0 half time lead?
Some tough midfield battles ensued which ended up with BC XI being awarded a free kick about 30 yards out. Up walked Henry and "bent it like Beckham" over the wall and beat their keeper to his right. The 4 goal cushion was restored but maybe the younger Facilities XI spotted some tired legs in the BC team as they seemed to be spurred on. They quickly responded to make it 5-2.
The pressure came back on to the BC XI but we handled ourselves well and kept them out for the next 20 minutes. With ten minutes left we won a corner. The cross came in and was half cleared by the Facilities team. We lobbed the ball back in and it bounced off yours truly's head and looped over the keeper for a goal. After falling over in amazement I picked myself up off the floor and my reward from captain Andrew ..."write the match report" (that's the last time I go up for a corner).
The Facilities scored a consolation goal with a couple of minutes left to make it 6-3. A great result for the boys.
Goals: Jamie Thullier (3), Paul Summer, Dan Spencer
Man of the Match: Jamie Thullier
Match Report: Andrew Marshall
I actually volunteered to do this match report as the whole performance from everyone –even the referee ! – was superb.
The Mariners were all at sea early on as we raced into 2 goal lead within 3 minutes of the start. The first came from a quickly taken Jamie short corner that fell to Dan who blasted against Adrian standing on the line but the ball fell back for Dan to prod home. Calculated move?
The second was well crafted with Chris Firth lofting a cross to the edge of the area for Jamie to get up and nod over the keeper .
From the kick-off though , they scored an almost non-contested goal that none of us can recall much about …2-1 up on 4 minutes and your scribe had still not touched the ball!
We completely dominated for the rest of the half and played some good stuff with Dan and Chris Firth very prominent down the wings and Chris C, Paul S and Stuart B bossing the central areas…
Jamie confirmed his class with an exquisite finish with the outside of his right boot into the corner after beating 2 or 3 defenders, and he nearly secured a first half hattrick when he beat about 7 men and had his low shot saved by a despairing keeper. Stuart did find the net with a neat header from a corner, but the ref had just blown for pushing so it didn’t count.
Half time 3-1 and looking good –Our new keeper Ian Marr had hardly touched the ball!
The Mariners continued to flounder in the 2nd half , although later on they found a ‘fisherman’s friend“ from somewhere to come on in a bright yellow shirt amidst their blue shirts and he did add some steel into their defence , but we continued to dominate.
Jamie got his hat trick with a powerful free-kick from just outside the area and in true “3rds’ traditions I duly brought him off as he was clearly too good for the oppo!
This might have been a silly mistake as they broke away down the right and after Ian had made a good save, their best player converted the rebound to make us a bit edgy, but Jason Edwards thought he’d made it safe when , despite being whacked from behind, he got up in true Aussie style and blasted past the goalie…Oh no , the ref gave the foul, so I asked Paul Summer to reward Jason’s efforts which he duly did with a firm finish as they lined their wall up all wrong . Paul had to be good enough to take advantage and he was!
I reckon we could have had a couple of penalties and the game ended as it started with us on top and the Mariners leaking goals for fun!
Ian was calmness personified between the sticks and handled everything well. Ian Georgegan had a good game on his return , but picked up an injury, as did Chris Firth who I though t had a marvelous game on the right wing…Roger Kelly and myself were never really troubled defensively and both of us were able to help out a bit moving forward –yes I did concede a foul throw !
The centre backs were awesome! Steve and Jason never missed a tackle or a header – a privilege to play near them!
Dan had a cracking game on the left wing , skinning his full back, whipping in cross after cross, having headers in the box…bonza game!
Chris Cribb is starting to get his feet and looks a good player when he is swooping forward with the ball –won his fair share of tackles . Stuart Bedford ran and ran and very nearly scored several times. Paul Summer controlled the game and hardly put a pass a stray –pure class!
Jason and Adrian both worked really had up front thought the chances didn’t quite come their way.
The undisputed man of the match award is for young Jamie Thuillier who was a constant threat , worked his socks off and scored 3 great goals –it doesn’t get much better than that!
Goals: Jamie Thuillier, Andy Petyt
Man of the Match: Andy Petyt
Match Report: Andrew Marshall
This was the first time we have had a “merged” 3rd team with representatives from the 1sts and 2nds , and by the end of the match it was pretty clear that the experiment didn’t work that well.
However, we got off to a good start on a bone-hard , bumpy pitch when Jaime ran on majestically to an insightful Guy pass to put us ahead with a firm finish that went straight through the goal-nets which are as rotten as the rest of the pitch!
Alas we gifted them an equalizer when the ball pinballed between 3 of us before sitting up perfectly on the edge of the 6 yard box for their bloke to lash it past Ian.
A! dull period of play then ensued but was lit up by a contender for GOAL Of THE SEASON! I cannot remember how it all started but for some reason Andy Petyt suddenly spring from his defensive role and picked up a bouncing ball about 40 yards from goal –‘Ave a go! I yelled , and he blasted the ball into the top corner with power and accuracy. Well played that man!
In typical fashion though we again gifted another equalizer –this time when Ian’s attempt to catch a corner brushed off his gloves onto big Stevie G’s forehead and he never misses from a yard out!
FT 2-5 –I don’t really want to waste time on the second half which was poor except for 2 good free kicks from Alan T and Rob A. They scored 3 scrappy goals and we missed a few chances , but it was disappointing overall.
The score did flatter the Hibs, but they probably deserved to win as it is all about finishing and avoiding mistakes.
Man of the match was undoubtedly Andy Petyt –not just for his screamer of a goal , but his general play was fanstastic and he for one didn’t deserve to end up on a losing side!
Andrew Marshall-who forgot to ask anyone to do this report so had no choice but to do it himself!
Man of the Match:
Match Report: Chris Pardey
Apologies for late report and very little detail - I was designated report writer after the game and then forgot !
I see from Espzen website that Andrew Marshall declared as man of the match for this game and remains the teams star player. He also won the Baekert mug of the week . I wont argue with whoever submitted this assessment.
Bukit timah pitch 2 selected as the best available of the 3 pitches , all of which were well rutted after rain and sun. We were to play against a strong H4 united team and it was thought the smallest pitch with lots of ruts suited our style of play best.
Mike Thornton arrived just in time to play in goal , after playing earlier for the 1st team
The first half was close and decent performance from the British Club team - no real chances to score.
Main issue was guy mason going off injured after falling on one of the ruts in the field - we all look forward to playing on a flat surface.
The 2nd half also close but H4 scored two goals and took the victory - probably deserved
British club retired to scores and positive thoughts of being able to play on a flat surface very soon.
Even the spanish team that were due to play france that evening would have trouble to string passes together on bukit timah and andy murray certainly wouldnt relish the chances of playing tennis.
2 weeks late - England are eliminated and spain are european champions, andy murray is in the final at wimbledon, bradley wiggins has yellow jersey in the tour de france and British Club are looking relegation candidates from Espzen "livewire" saturday league division 4.
Come on Andy !
Man of the Match: The Ref
Match Report: Ken Reid
BEDOK 2012 SPECTACULAR IS UNDERWAY
Dramatic Opening Ceremony Enhanced By The Presence Of Elite British Club Athletes
Singapore’s public transport system creaked at the edges as crowds flocked for this rare, once-in-a-lifetime event (well, actually it was already the teams’ second meeting of this season). A capacity Ping Yi stadium cheered as HM The Queen arrived by parachute (to avoid the snarling queues on the PIE). There was even space in the crowd for a small band of Glasgow Rangers supporters, who had arrived at this remote stadium thinking that it was their first game of the season at Brechin (get used to “finding an unsignposted small stadium within an huge HDB estate” lads, as this is a foretaste for you of finding the grubby grounds at Stenhousemuir, Albion Rovers etc this season).
A dramatic light show threatened a timely start (being the single flashing yellow 60W bulb which was the lightning warning system), but clouds cleared and we were all set to start at 3pm when kick-off actually was then delayed by two unforeseen events – firstly BC refused to take the pitch as the laser scoreboard announced the BC team members beside the North Korean flag. This was quickly resolved, but then a more serious protest came from the North Korean Government, which objected strongly to the display of their precious flag alongside images of the less good-looking Australian members of the BC team. This was resolved by the presentation of a sacrificial gift to the Korean representatives (see below), and we were soon underway ….
….. it was a game of two halves, and BC lost both of them! To be fair, Ballastier were a strong and skilful team who played to their strengths throughout the game – particularly in rotating their fit young midfielders and forwards through the heat of the afternoon. The end result was fair, although the scoreline slightly flattered the victors.
For BC it was an afternoon of solid and workmanlike performances, but no outstanding individual contributions. At times there was some nice flowing passing (which bodes well for the new pitches at Turf City), but too often the ball was given away to opposition who relished the possession and made BC toil hard to get it back. There were chances, and also hope in so far as the opposition keeper (all 6’5” of him) did not look up to much (the only goal kick he took barely reached the edge of his box). However, his forte was clearly basketball and he turned out to have a good pair of hands, deflecting a number of goal bound efforts from various BC players.
New BC goalkeeper Alan had a very fine debut, and was blameless for any of the goals – he will be a very welcome addition to the Football Section (hope you enjoyed it Alan). Across the back four, both Brett and Ken (with barely two good ankles between them) played the full game and were well supported by Andrew M., Louis and Roger. The midfield had a very tough day on a hot pitch against fit and clever opposition. However, there were notable contributions at times from all - Heiko, Dan, Chris x 2, Pierluigi, Kieran and Boon. Up front it was a hard day’s running for Barry and Andrew R. (who had the ‘pleasure’ of being permanently marked by three defenders).
Man Of The Match – for all the grief we give to the standard of local refereeing, the best individual on the pitch last Saturday was probably the referee. He let the game flow with intelligence and humour, imposed his authority only when really necessary and got most of the key decisions right. He also (correctly) awarded half a dozen foul throws against the opposition and NONE against BC – a notable first (although Captain Marshall was shepherded well away from that aspect of the game by his team mates).
The ESPZEN league is proving tough this season, and BC will need to dig deep in the weeks ahead if they are to secure a respectable position – time to string a few victories together lads!!
With apologies to all those who will have woken today hoping that this was all a bad dream…
But best to get it out there promptly, and briefly (there is bound to be more detail available on the web-site from the ecstatic victors for anyone needing the gory details).
Not least to record the positives….yes there were some…. Ant managing a hat-trick (and there could/should? have been more) despite being on a losing side. And a man of the match performance from Andy Taylor, who never let up on energy and enthusiasm, regularly out-muscled and out-ran his opposite number, scored a good goal, and set up Ant’s 3rd by getting hauled down in the box after a fine run. Finally, as expected of all Andrew Marshall sides, the team spirit and effort remained solid despite the circumstances.
The late arrival of the ref allowed plenty of time to size up the oppo who looked like they had barely started shaving, and the tactical suggestions that started to circulate (rough them up, etc) betrayed a degree of foreboding and anxiety. As it turned out, on the rare occasions when it was possible to get close enough for physicality, these opportunities tended to result in either the penalty (which they missed) or free kicks against us. There wasn't really a plan B...
Apart from pace all over the pitch, they moved the ball quickly, switched the play, and generally showed off their tricks. Even without the spectacular generosity of the gifts offered for at least half of their goals, there was little doubt where the game was headed from the first 10 minutes onwards. The fact that we were rarely able to put more than 3 or 4 passes together before losing possession obviously didn’t help either.
Challenge: Expansive pitches + young oppo = imperative to make the weekly mantra of “let’s keep the ball lads, etc” actually actually mean something.
Remedy: 2 hours of 2 touch 8 a side on a weekly basis at James’ training sessions? Anything to raise the % of good 10 yard passes along the floor (to a team mate)
Or: Straight up to Scores for the beers? Surely not....
Match report: Christopher Cribb
Andy Taylor 25, 68
Mike Hughes 37
Stuart Boland 79
Adrian Plevin 83
Carl Jung once said: ‘There is no coming to consciousness without pain’.
In other words, a reality check.
After the painful 12-4 defeat from the previous week, the BC 3rds gathered conscious and positive thoughts and arrived as a collective group of likely men looking forward to ‘righting’ the ‘wrong’. This is the British Club way.
There were comical reminders from the previous week being exchanged amongst the team in the Changing Room ‘Tent Type Thing’ but when the time came to enter the arena, smiles were eroded and business was intended. This too, is the British Club way.
The fixture promised to be tight. A 6 pointer, some might say. Not the prettiest footballing fixture of the season but BC 3rds knew that they had to win this to salvage their season. Their opponents of the day were Boca Seniors, not the most senior of senior opponents to play against BC 3rds but firmly rooted to the bottom of the table and seeking a win to kick start their season.
The 3rds saw the return of Alan Tong to goalkeeping duties after a few weeks on the sidelines through injury and Captain Christopher Cribb gladly accepted the wealth of talent available to him. A dedicated keeper, Man Mountains in the back four, experienced midfield work horses and a forward pairing of age and beauty. 4-4-2 this too, is the British Club way.
The captain elected not to start this game, due to unpredictable ‘toilet culture’ as a consequence of recent trips to Dhaka and Dehli. Skid marks were to be left only on the field of play this week. And at the time of kick off, Boca could only muster 8 players and so the captain’s team talk couldn’t have been any simpler. ‘They have 8 men for at least 15 – 20 minutes. Get amongst them. Score goals and lots of them’.
BC 3rds started well and dominated the early passages of play with their numerical advantage, passing the ball well, creating space, and building from the back, enjoying plenty of possession whilst Boca were content to retain all 8 players behind the ball until reinforcements arrived.
Through all their early adventure, BC 3rds could not break the deadlock. New arrival Taylor created a few chances; Diaz continued to chase half chances with the rest of the team looking fairly comfortable in possession. Goalkeeper Tong enjoying a relatively quiet start for a change thanks to assured defending from centre half pairing Gillespie and Hodge. On 20 minutes and as further Boca players arrived, the match was still locked at 0-0.
The arrival of the absent Boca players saw the game open up and after withstanding 20 minutes of intense pressure from BC 3rds, Boca began to create chances calling on Goalkeeper Tong to make a couple of fine saves.
On 25 minutes, the deadlock was finally broken and BC 3rds finally went ahead thanks to some excellent midfield exchanges by Hughes and McNamara providing Taylor with a goal scoring opportunity which was taken aplomb.
As always in tight relegation battles, very few clear goal scoring opportunities present themselves and quite often and as seen before, it takes something very special to open up a tight game.
On 37 minutes, this is exactly what we saw. Mike Hughes, 30 yards out, left foot, curling away from the keeper, bulging net, 2-0. The game opened up like a tin of cheap Asda Spam. Cue understated and unassuming goal celebration from Mike Hughes. Cue wild celebration from the terraces and babies are being thrown into the air. Cometh the hour, cometh the man. What a peach. Indeed. I repeat. What a peach.
Half Time: 2-0
I would be happy to end this report now such was my privilege to witness such a fine goal, but there is more to write and guess what? It got better. But I will keep it brief.
The second half continued much as the first, same, same but different. The game ebbed and flowed but BC 3rds controlled the game and were rewarded with a further 3 goals. The team looked comfortable and Goalkeeper Tong largely untroubled all afternoon. Generally a fine team effort when a fine team effort was required. Just what the Doctor ordered. Notable contributions from everyone that day and promising prospects in the form of Taylor and Boland.
Man of the Match goes to that man Mike Hughes for that goal, in that game, on that pitch.
And on a personal note, no skid mark damage reported from ‘Maid Ivy’ on the domestic front. So a good day all around and things are very much looking up. This is the British Club way.
With a change in leadership to our new Captain Ken “king” Reid, the whole team were inspired with a 10 minute motivational talk before the game. We were also lucky to still have our previous leader, Andrew “the everlasting” Marshall still within the team. Maybe Inspiration all round!
However you could see in the player’s eyes that with Andrew’s loss of positional power and arm band no one had to listen anymore! We just turned our backs and walked away....... so many memories of a bygone era........ “the throw-ins”, the tackling”.... “The dribbling” (and that’s not just down the chin)
Anyway moving to the game......
Just before kick off we were left without a goalie. Our Captain stepped up to the plate and once again led by example!!!!! Thanks Ken!
BC started very strong with a solid 25 minutes of midfield domination and total defensive control. We should of been a goal up but alas no such luck.... with literally there first attack and shot on goal the ball was played through, hit first time and a second later we were 1-0 down.....
Diaz then produces a shot from distance with his “legendary skill and first touch” but it bounced just past the post.
But we kept at our task....
With relentless tacking and attacking, we manage to grab a goal to make it 1-1. Well done Andy Taylor.
Strategic Subs were then undertaken by Captain Ken. Andrew on, Mark B on and a couple more... 10 mins left in half
BNP had an attack which Paul Davis put out for a corner. Corner taken. With his first touch of the ball, Andrew shouldered it direct to a BNP a player. Bang and its 2-1 to BNP..... It was a solid piece of skill from both players.......
HT 2-1 Hibs.
The BC played strong in the second half and kept plugging away. With 10 mins to go, We made a strategic switch to put Bigger Steve H up front. This resulted in immediate fear in the back four. We played the ball long, Bigger Steve took out 2 players, turned 180 battleship fashion and blasted the ball into the net. 2-2 and no more than deserved!
Overall game was played in Great Spirit and with abit of luck we could have won.
I think Steve”almost MOM” Gillespie was solid in defensive with Paul “tornado” Davies equally great. Mike Hughes was a legend in midfield and Darryl never gave up.
MOM Mike Hughes for some great passing!
British Club 3rds – 4 (Reid, A., Thuillier, R.(2), Hughes) Titans – 1
Having failed in the most important duty of any captaincy (nominating someone else to write the match report), this discourse is scribed by yours truly.
A 4pm glance at the Singapore weather radar revealed the country to be surrounded entirely by purple ‘intensive rain’. Would we have another wash out this week? – well no. Miraculously the really intense stuff stayed away; we all got soaked, but not so much that we didn’t manage to play the full 90 minutes on our ‘favourite’ grass pitch.
Opposition for this friendly were the Titans, always individually skilful, and usually a good match for any of the BC teams.
BC lined up with Alan Tong in goal, back four of Kelly, Wood, Gillespie and Tim (borrowed from the Welsh for the day). Decided to start with five in midfield of Mangham, Thuillier, Hughes, MacNamara and Spencer, leaving Andrew Reid alone up-front to cope with a skilful and physically imposing Titans back four. The Captain started on-the-bench (as is his privilege when it looks like the rain is about to start), Steve Hodge and trialist for the day, Justin.
Early exchanges were positive. Five in the midfield was the right decision. Steve Mangham particularly found good space on the right flank and would be a terror to the Titans left back all afternoon. The Titans played a higher-and-higher defensive line to support its midfield, and this left opportunity for BC to exploit. In the 15th minute a crafted through ball by Robin left Andrew one-on-one with the keeper. Round he went and clipped the ball in to the corner over the advancing defender. 1-0 and no more than BC deserved at this stage.
The rain then intensified and the Captain decided he should join the fray (so that Mrs. Reid had two full dirty kits to wash). Titans were individually skilful, but continuously on the back foot, particularly with the introduction of Steve Hodge up-front who would be a physical challenge to them for the remainder of the game.
1-0 at half time. A good performance, just needed to concentrate a bit more in keeping possession for the second half.
Rain had eased (relatively), and BC started well. Midfield operated a ‘10 minute rotation policy’ (to keep one man fresh), and credit must go particularly to Dan Spencer who had an immense second half, playing in at least four positions. Ball retention was good, and the Titans became more and more tired as they chased shadows for the first 20 minutes (actually, it is quite difficult to chase shadows when it is getting so dark that you can barely make out the people, never mind the shadows).
It was no surprise when BC scored again. Corner fell to Robin on the edge of the box. He gave himself enough time to decide where it was going, and clipped it beautifully in to the corner of the net. By this stage things were looking good. Defence was sound, and our midfield dictated the pace and flow of the game. Up front, the menace of Steve Hodge and the movement of Andrew Reid (with two or three defenders following him everywhere) were a constant threat. A lovely exchange between Steve Mangham and Andrew led to Titans concession of a free kick on the edge of the box. Up stepped Mike Hughes to place it in the top corner (although we were all disappointed that he required the support of a deflection to do so. Need to review who should be taking those free kicks in future!) 3-0 and cruising.
Then a moment of defensive aberration (probably the only one in the game). Somehow a chest high Titans corner managed to squeeze through everyone and lodge itself in the bottom corner. 3-1 and 10 minutes to go.
Then the pick of the BC goals. Another corner, headed out to Robin on the edge of the box. Volley, top corner . 4-1
It was was all getting rather exciting, and the possibility of bringing Steve Gillespie on at centre-forward for the last five minutes was even considered. Thankfully common sense prevailed, and he returned to the pitch in his ‘normal’ position. It was fitting that the game ended, in the dark, but during yet another BC attack.
Great all-round performance, and every single player contributed to a real team effort. Not so easy to pick a man-of-the-match – but in the end, for his two fine goals, this week’s award goes to Robin Thuillier!
A thrilling encounter, one with plenty of highs and lows.
Captained by Ken Reid, the game started with a quick tempo, with both teams starting strongly.
With some Barcelona-esc movement, The British club were unlucky to find themselves without a goal or two in the first half – failing to capitalise on the intense early pressure! With Robin Thuillier sending a thunderous drive goalwards only to be denied by the post, and shortly after, Patricio forcing the keeper to make a fine save from a low shot, the tight nature of the match was becoming evident.
The match was end-to-end total football, and BNP weren’t without their chances, forcing the British Club keeper, Matt Warburton into a number of high profile saves.
Just after the 20 minute mark, BNP found themselves ahead due to the cat like reactions of Andrew Reid. With a very dubious ‘ball-to-hand’ situation, a penalty was awarded, which the opposition took quite comfortably and with composure.
Just minutes later, The British Club were caught on the break and found themselves 2-0 down due to some neat finishing from the opposition.
Whilst the British Club found themselves down on the scoreboard come the half-time whistle, morale was high and never once did we think that this game was over.
We started the second half as we started the first – with fast flowing football. With a tighter formation, improved passing and being wary of the counter-attacking ability of the opposition, all the early pressure was from the British Club, and it might be fair to say that the British Club experienced the better half of the two teams.
After numerous efforts on and off goal, hope was finally restored when Andy Taylor got on the end of a sublime low cross from the far right, delivered by Patricio.
Jamie Thuillier and Andrew Reid came close with efforts but to no avail.
Due to some inconsistent refereeing, both teams found themselves a man down as a result of tempers flaring halfway through the second half, but all in all, the game was played in very good spirit.
BNP still presented a threat, but a lack of composure in front of goal meant them never coming close to a third in open play. That being said, it is unfair not acknowledge their performance and build up play, which at times created gaping holes in the British Club’s formation all across the pitch.
The British Club were unlucky not to find an equaliser when goal-line heroics from an opposition defender, the keepers face and the post denied us a second. Not the desired result – but entertaining all the same!
In the closing minutes of the game, BNP were awarded another penalty (could someone please explain the concept of one goalkeeper per team to the Reids – like father like son), which was taken confidently again by the oppositions number 11, to put an end to all hope for the British club deservedly taking something from this game.
Final score 3-1 BNP. A great game, with the final score not truthfully reflecting the performance of the British Club. With a fixture against BNP next week, all the British club players involved can take confidence from their respective performances and can expect another cracker next week.