Boys’ Football Report
27 Jan 2016
Maidwell Hall Colts A 2
Witham Hall Colts A 8
The Colts A football season got off to a terrific start in the Maidwell winter sunshine. Our boys played some lovely football – the defence was solid, the midfield industrious and the attack clinical. Lone striker Louis scored four goals, Charlie netted three and Ludo got one. Captain Alex was superb in central midfield and Harry's wing-play was a consistent threat. A great performance that bodes well for the coming months!
On Wednesday, 19th January the Colts ‘B’ welcomed both Maidwell Hall and the Peterborough School for a triangular tournament here at Witham.
Starting out against Maidwell, Witham showed their footballing ability; with nice interplay and excellent movement the Colts were dominating both possession and territory and showing very little signs of the early season ‘rustiness’ that might have been expected. The Colts made the most of this dominance and went into half time 1-0 up. After the break Witham continued to dominate and added two more goals. Maidwell did manage to score on the break with Witham pushing for a fourth but the Colts ran out deserving 3-1 winners.
With Peterborough beating Maidwell 4-0 the Colts expected that their second game would be a tougher one and they were not disappointed. With both sides playing some excellent passing football it was a game for the defence and the Colts defence was reassuring throughout, letting very little through in a superb performance, demonstrating good tackling and reading of the game. The score-line did not quite do Witham justice, for what was a pulsating game but a 0-0 draw against a strong Peterborough ‘A’ side can be considered a very good result.
A brilliant start to the season, which with continued hard work will surely bring further success.
Witham Hall 2
Spratton Hall 2
The Colts C kicked the season off on a beautifully sunny, yet cold afternoon. With the conditions perfectly set, the match lived up to expectations with an abundance of skill, commitment and excitement. The game flowed from end to end and both teams had decent opportunities to score, but it was Spratton who drew first blood with a well worked goal that Richard Tomlinson could do nothing about. The goal reignited Witham and saw the boys dominate for long periods until finally Hugo Shippey converted after superb play from James Fairfax in the middle of the field and a lovely cross from James Wass.
With the score level at half time, the game was there for the taking. Again, both teams passed the ball well and looked to capitalise on opportunities and again it was Spratton who took the lead. Having already made a number of top drawer saves, Richard was again left with no chance having parried the ball from a cross only for it to drop to an oncoming Spratton forward. The reaction from the Witham boys was terrific and a few minutes later the boys had the chance to level the score after a Spratton defender was judged to have raised his arm to the ball in the penalty area following a dangerous cross from James Fairfax. James stepped up to hammer the penalty home, only for the Spratton keeper to produce a magnificent save, pushing the ball onto the crossbar before it then bounced down on the line and away to safety. This did not dent the morale of the team; if anything it drove them on stronger and Hugo Shippey found himself through on goal again before delicately lifting the ball over the keeper and into the net for the equaliser. Moments later, James Fairfax broke away and was brought down when through on goal in the penalty area. James stepped aside for James Wass to take the spot-kick, only to see his well struck penalty also saved by the Spratton keeper.
The game ebbed to its dying moments with both teams ploughing forward for the winner. With seconds left, Jack Cummins (who had been outstanding all game) played the ball forward for Hugo Shippey to run onto – with the prospect of a hat-trick in sight and the opportunity to win the game, he drew his foot back ready to connect sweetly with the ball only for the Spratton keeper to rush forward and produce a wonderful stop in the nick of time.
The game ended 2-2, with both teams feeling that there were chances to win the game, but ultimately the result was the right one.
Man of the Match was Hugo Shippey
Colts C & D v The Peterborough School U11B & Maidwell Hall Colts C.
Colts C - Played: 3 Won: 3
Colts D - Played: 3 Won: 1 Lost: 2
A cold but sunny afternoon provided the backdrop to this triangular fixture that was played in a competitive spirit with Witham doing rather well and confirming the opinion of their coaches, that the year five boys have certainly added strength in depth to the Colts squad.
As always Peterborough were a strong and physical team, but although the D team lost out to them the C managed a good win. Maidwell found Peterborough too hot to handle losing by a margin of six goals but that was the only mismatch of the afternoon. The Cs beat both Maidwell and their Colts D counterparts, who then went on to beat Maidwell in their final game.
All games were played in great spirit with many boys clearly pushing on to challenge for places in the higher teams. Over the afternoon, James Fairfax, Jack Cummins and George Vergerson-Rowley all stood out. Well done to all the boys for a sporting afternoon of soccer!
Further observations from the Colts C coach on the day, Mr Davies:
It was a wonderful afternoon for the boys. The first match against Maidwell Hall was the set up for a great afternoon of football for the Colts C; within the opening minutes they had scored a wonderful counter attacking goal, by using the full width and space of the pitch. This was the first of many more to come. The team really gelled together and passed the ball amongst each other beautifully, taking what they learnt in training to a match situation. The end result finished 6-0.
The second match was a high tempo and thrilling encounter between two eager and passionate teams against their fellow pupils, the Colts D. This was a close match throughout which ended in another success - spirits remained were high and the boys were ready to face The Peterborough School
With the last match against The Peterborough School, the pressure was on to have a clean sweep. The boys took an early lead by a great passage of team play, which set them up for a strong start. Unfortunately, with a lack of concentration The Peterborough School manage to snatch a goal back. After half time, the boys were determined to be unbeaten for the afternoon. They came out firing and really worked for one another, executing the simple things well ending the match 3-1.
With some fierce challenges, fluent passages of team play and excellent team spirit. It is important they build on this positive approach and attitude and take this into their next fixture.
Witham Hall 0
Spratton Hall 3
The Colts boys found themselves against a confident Spratton team who looked to have time on the ball, passed incisively and played themselves out of defence with assurance. Witham attacked in a concerted fashion with George Vergerson – Rowley and George Alford threatening to score on several occasions. However, the rub of the green did not quite go their way and once Stratton had forced an own goal from a low drilled cross, they really turned the screw effectively by mounting attack after attack. Witham could count themselves lucky to go in only one goal in arrears at the break.
In the second half the boys worked harder and pressed the ball better but Spratton, despite the harrying, stayed cool and scored two more on the break. Witham played with lots of spirit and the long goal clearances nearly opened the obdurate Spratton defence, but it just wasn’t to be and Spratton ran out worthy winners.
However, encouraging signs from the boys on their first outing; Ben Price and Esa Khalid looked comfortable in goal as they shared duties. At the back, Kit Chatterton and Felix Hamilton prevented Spratton really running away with the game, in midfield Eddie Howell’s speed and fitness was noticeable and the two Georges worked well together and will establish a better understanding as the season progresses.
Year 4 Football:
Mini Festival with Maidwell Hall and The Peterborough School
All the Year 4 boys were involved in Wednesday afternoon’s fixture with Maidwell and The Peterborough School and it was terrific to see them all making two strong teams. Witham Team 1 played a very nice opening game of passing the ball the wide into space resulting in two lovely goals scored. The whole squad were keen to support each other, even when something didn’t quite go their way! Witham Hall 2 played against The Peterborough School, narrowly losing this match. Match 2 saw the clash of the Witham teams – both teams played with tremendous determination and in the true sporting Witham way. It was a narrow victory for Witham Team 1 because they managed to finish their final shots on goal a little more accurately. The final games between The Peterborough School and Witham Team 1 and then Maidwell against Witham Team 2 were once again played with terrific determination from every boy. The passing and movement around the pitch had continued to improve all afternoon. It was a delight to watch such young players become more accurate with their passing and ball control.
Well done and thank you to Maidwell and The Peterborough School for coming along to participate in such a fun afternoon. I hope their boys returned having gained something from this afternoon.
More thoughts on the afternoon from Mr Cudmore…….
The U9’s football got off to an excellent start this season with the boys playing in a round robin type festival against The Peterborough School and Maidwell Hall. The Witham Hall U9’s split into two teams and both teams performed exceptionally well. The festival was non-competitive, meaning that no scores we’re kept in the games as the day was designed for the players to develop their skills. The boys put on display all the skills and knowledge they have learnt in training and played excellent football by displaying strong passes and great spacing. Even though it was the first game of the season for the U9’s they showcased outstanding teamwork by moving the ball around very selflessly to get their teammates in a better position to score.