The issue – Ascot’s new Carlos Fandango 9G pitch. Highly researched over many a late candle, we had been issued with specific footwear requirements by the Ascot Elite. Many questions were asked by our devoted team; pictures sent with “are these ok”, “what about these”, “are Hobnail Boots ok”; flip flops; clogs and wellies were all considered with many a parent sweating about the possibility of having to buy new football boots from the weekend’s drinking/clothes shopping kitty. Eventually, this somewhat oppressive situation was resolved with all the team suitably shod.
At kick off time the lads had been suitably warmed up by Smiler Steve and were raring to go, whilst the opposition were still turning up.
Finally the game kicked off with Ascot failing to provide a linesman……..”is this legal?” we questioned, but as it was an offside advantage to us we decided it was only fair to keep quiet.
From the off the lads pressed straight away with Nathaniel showing good skills on the edge of the penalty area and shot only for Ascot’s keeper to collect.
A nice through pass from Adam to Bunny saw his legs a blur before he passed back to Joshey who shot only for their keeper to collect again. A good start. Sam played a lovely long ball through to Nathaniel which saw a race between our own Usain Bolt and their keeper. Unlucky Usain!
Wasn’t long before Usain was off on the chase again only to be challenged by Ascot defence and collected by their keeper again. Some nice footwork by Lucas C on the edge of the box saw Bunny away on the right who crossed to Alfie only to see his shot saved. The Ascot keeper kicked from his hands only for it to be collected by Adam which resulted in quick passes from him to Sam T and Alfie who shot again only for their keeper to save.
A good positive start from our lads with opportunities a plenty. The tension was palpable!!
Finally after 15 minutes the Ascot linesman had managed to drag himself away from the bar and eventually took his position with coffee in hand (dedication at its finest).
Free kick award just inside the Ascot half saw a lovely floated free kick from Adam drop down onto their goalie who fumbled with Sam F very unlucky not to score. The midfield battle continued with good defending and counter attacks by both teams. A lovely sliding tackle by Joshey and 2 good long runs from Jake who powered up the field, thighs like Tug Boats, showed promise.
The pressure from Finch continued with good skills from Sam F, Lucas C, Bunny, Jake Ma and Alfie all creating numerous opportunities which we simply were unable to convert. An unfortunate tackle by Joshey saw Ascot awarded a penalty who promptly hit the post (guffaw). Close call.
2nd Half: A determined run by George with a thundering shot on target was only saved at the last moment by the keeper’s feet. A deserved goal if ever there was. An attack by Ascot saw what appeared to be a clear foul on Ollie in goal and resulted in a 1-0 lead to Ascot. Controversial to say the least.
More pressure was being applied by Finch with their goalie always being in the right place to prevent a certain goal. Good skills by Jake Mo on the edge of the penalty area, a deft turn and shot only to be denied again but a corner awarded with unfortunately no goal. Lovely skills and a good run by Kam on the right side took him clean past two Ascot players with his hair flowing behind like My Little Pony in a wind tunnel only for him to be fouled in their half.
The free kick was quickly collected by their goalie. Will this ball ever go in the net we ask??
A Crossfield ball from Ascot to their striker resulted in a soft goal. 2-0 to Ascot
Finch applied the pressure with countless shots just wide of the opponent’s goal. Bunny sent in a perfect cross for Jake Mo to spin and send the ball into the bottom left hand corner – great finish.
Finch continued to press from all positions, pushing forward determined to score the equaliser for the last 10 mins. Ascot pinned in their half.
The final whistle came and the result certainly did not reflect the performance from both teams. A game which we should clearly have won from countless opportunities. Final Score Ascot United Aces 2 : 1 Finch Rovers (Sat 2 Nov 2019)