Yorkshire Amateur League 2 Amateur Football Combination 3
Report courtesy of Bill Blackwell
The annual fixture against the 'Yorkshire League' took the AFC to Leeds at the home of St Anthony's Beeson AFC.
With their small contingent of support, which was highly appreciated by the management and players the team arrived in good time to enjoy the excellent pre-match hospitality provided by our hosts. This all helped in the preparation for the game and the 11 AFC (Yes 11)! all looked focussed and eager to put on a good display.
Kick off: Game started and a lively pace was accompanied by some heavy tackles and pressure from Yorkshire as they tried to impose themselves on their opponents.....The AFC held firm and slowly started to find their feet with a some good controlled passing movements, these only lacked the final pass. The deadlock was broken but not in the AFC favour! a poor throw-in allowed Yorkshire to break in behind and the winger produced an top draw cross for the incoming forward to score at the second time of asking! Problems again five minutes later, following a passage of play by the AFC the home team again broke down their left flank and a 'Cross come shot' somehow eluded Roman Pechhacker in the AFC goal.
Yorkshire continued to play a long and strong game and the AFC had to show character and togetherness to withstand a ten minute onslaught as the home side went for the kill. The AFC response was excellent with Heritage & Eguae and the front pairing of Stevens & Fox started to make problems for Yorkshire with some intelligent running and inter-play.
Opportunities arrived with two quick shots from Stevens and another couple of half chances for Fox. Then just what the AFC needed, a foul of the robust Fox produced a free kick 25 yards out, up stepped Brethanoux to plant a great strike into the bottom corner. AFC back in the game. The confidence rose in the AFC and players started producing some good football with both wide pairings of Eguae,Aydine & Heritage,Prendergast starting to cause major problems for the opposition.
This brought the AFC reward following a corner, Ayinde fed Fox who's shot took a deflection into the bottom corner.
Half time 2 - 2
2nd half Kick off: Yorkshire started the better of the two and both forwards had to be marshalled strongly by Sergeant & Dorgu. AFC appeared to still be in the dressing room as home side piled on the pressure with a succession of corners and long shots. The game continued to ebb and flow and slowly Flaherty & Brethanoux took control of the middle of the park, AFC started to create again. Powerful running by Eguae caused problems on numerous occasions for Yorkshire again only the final pass/shot was missing. The decisive goal arrived from a unusual source, a long Pechhacker goal kick was flicked on by Flaherty to allow Stevens to run through the centre and score calmly.
The AFC in front and playing well and showing over the last five games the team ethos is clearly established, but would their early physical effort tell, especially with no subs! Yorkshire continued with the long , high tempo game that brought some brilliant defensive work out of the back four (Prendergast, Sergeant, Dorgu, Ayinde). With the legs getting weary the AFC started to play on the break with great probing runs by Eguae & Heritage and the constant work rate of Fox ensure that the AFC created numerous other chances that just lacked the finish.
It still required a fantastic save from Pechhacker after what appeared a handball by the Yorkshire forward. The home side produced a couple of late corners but they could not take advantage of these.
A great result and performance by the AFC to end run of five games under new management with a reasonable record of Played 5 , Won 3 , Drew 1 , Lost 1. Bring on next season.
R Pechhacker, S Ayinde, C Prendergast, J Sergeant, T Dorgu, C Heritage, S
Flaherty, N Brethanoux, P Eguae, D Stevens, J Fox