Great effort in terrible conditions

York & District Mitchell League under-10s Division One A

Tadcaster Magnets5

Pocklington Panthers0

This week Pocklington under-10s travelled to Tadcaster.

After a superb display in goal last week, Matty remained between the sticks this week, meaning the same team that beat Poppleton would start the game this week.

Conditions were appalling with driving rain and the pitch was terrible, with very little grass and lots of mud patches, which would not suit the Panthers’ normal flowing football style.

Panthers started the game and were quickly on the attack with Will and Luke pressing, Jamie lively up front with Josh, who forced an early corner, Charlie up from defence for this was unlucky to see his left-footed shot going narrowly wide.

Tadcaster responded well with both Ryan and Charlie having to work very hard in defence against much bigger players and in awful conditions, making it hard to judge the flight of the ball. They were doing well and Matty behind them made some good saves early on to keep the home team out.

Panthers were playing some nice neat football, despite the state of the pitch and were causing the home team problems with their running off the ball, Will threading a lovely ball through the defence with Jamie and Josh unlucky in the goalmouth. The ball hit defenders and the post several times but somehow just wouldn’t go over the line, and Tadcaster were clearly rattled.

Tadcaster, clearly more used to playing on the awful pitch, started to push forward, Luke dropping deep to help cover. Ryan did well to get to the through ball and clear well for a corner. Matty was unlucky as the corner took a deflection to give the home team a 1-0 lead.

Panthers pressed forward, Luke and Jamie covering lots of ground and both Josh and Will were unlucky to see some fine shots saved by the keeper who was almost single-handedly keeping Tadcaster in the game. Tadcaster scored just before the break and the scoreline at half time did not reflect how well Panthers had played.

Will E came on to replace Charlie as Tadcaster started the second half, but were soon closed down by Ryan and Will E, Ryan continually trying to keep Panthers motivated and the momentum high.

Luke pushed out of defence, then beat the midfielder and Jamie forced yet another corner for Panthers, Luke unlucky to be kept out by the keeper who was by now making saves with his feet to keep Panthers out.

Will was relentless in his efforts, pushing forward in search of goals, after beating two players with another great run, and put Josh through who, having beaten the keeper, saw his shot clip the bar, Will following in to force another corner.

Tadcaster broke and, against the run of play, netted a third. Matty was very unfortunate not to keep that out, and would have done had the pitch not been so poor. Despite the increasing driving rain which was by now turning to sleet, and the ball continually sticking in the mud, the boys kept going, showing great character and determination. Panthers continued to push forward looking for a way back into the game, with Jamie, Luke, Will and Josh all going close, while Will E and Ryan were battling hard in defence to keep the home team out, Matty continuing to pull off some good saves.

Tadcaster scored twice before the final whistle but the 5-0 scoreline flattered them immensely. Panthers had been unlucky in front of goal on several occasions and the game could have been very different had luck been with Panthers today.

Everyone had put in a great effort in terrible conditions and playing on a pitch that must be one of the worst in the league, so all of the boys should be proud of their efforts in such awful conditions.

Man of the match was awarded to Will who, despite the awful pitch and terrible conditions, had played some lovely football.