Croydon Cup: Elmhurst U11’s are through to Round 3

Elmhurst School for Boys

27th November 2015 | Sport

Team: Oliver Wilcox, Oscar Sweeny, Emmanuel Akinrinade, Maliq Attah, Henry Farquharson, Tobias Ayieloa, Aarush Wangoo

In the second round of the Croydon U11’s Football Cup, Elmhurst were up against another strong local state primary school; Orchard Way. We travelled on a wet Tuesday afternoon over to Orchard Way. Their pitch was quagmire like. We soon realised that the ball would not travel far if kicked along the ground and so had to adjust our strategy somewhat. We would usually play the ball along the ground to feet or into space, but on this day, we resorted to a high pressing game and balls in the air, especially from our own half.

The high pressing game was reaping good possession and preventing Orchard Way from playing the game they wanted to play. However, there were occasions when we were too high and they were catching us on the break. Despite good levels of possession and reasonable control of the game in the first half, Orchard Way eventually broke the deadlock with a breakaway goal against the run of play.

It is often said that a team is most vulnerable immediately after scoring and Elmhurst scored immediately from the kick off to dampen the Orchard Way celebration. From the kick off, Aarush passed to Tobias and Tobias back to Henry who shot from well inside his own half. The ball skidded on the wet surface, evading the outstretched arms of their goalkeeper and in! 1-1 was the score we took into the half-time talk. Mr South and I were very encouraged by what we had seen and told the boys to try to continue the pressing game at least for the first few minutes of the second half and try to take the lead. The boys carried out these instructions to the letter and the high press led to a corner from which Maliq scored the decisive goal. From this moment onwards Orchard Way did not seem to have the energy to fight for the equaliser and in the end, an excellent team goal was scored by Aarush following half a dozen one or two touch passes.

This is an excellent result for the Elmhurst U11’s who are now looking forward to continuing their Cup run this season!

AJ Padfield

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