Under 13 Match Reports 2017-2018
Supermarine U12 (Wilts County Cup) 1-5 Robins U13
Robins through to County Cup Quarter Finals
After securing passage to the League Cup Quarter finals last week, this week saw us back in County Cup action, again with a Quarter final berth on offer for the victor. We had been drawn away to Supermarine U12, many of whom our lot know from playing for the same JPL outfit so we already knew they are a technically strong side who can move the ball around nicely when given the chance. Playing on the big 1st team pitch with no subs was always going to be a challenge against a strong side like this, so it was important that we started strongly.
Apparently those words of advice went unheeded as we started sluggishly and didn't look like we'd be able to string more than two passes together, while Supermarine were spraying the ball around nicely. We got what we deserved from such sluggish play and soon found ourselves a goal down. But credit where it's due, the lads didn't let their heads drop, in fact this seemed to be the spark they needed to start playing. Jowan and Tom took hold of the game in the centre of the pitch and it was Tom who drew us level with a fierce strike from outside the area into the top corner of the net.
We started to play some good football now albeit we still didn't fully exploit the space allowed us on the full-size 1st team pitch. Some excellent work from Morgan and Lewis, both of whom came close to giving us the lead. But it was Tom who put us in front with his (and our) second after Alan found him in a tight space inside the area, Tom turned and cracked in a great strike to put us ahead.
And just before half time Tom turned provider, after making a great run to get down the side, he squared the ball in for Morgan who'd made a fantastic run down the centre and finished with some style to take us into the break 3-1 up.
A bit of a reshuffle at the break as Sonny stepped into midfield where he gave a very assured performance alongside first Tom and then Jowan, largely controlling the game between the three of them. But some good play from Supermarine prevented us from extending our lead several times until 15 minutes into the second half when the keeper got hands to Tom's fierce strike but couldn't keep it out. A couple of minutes after that, Morgan's hard work pressing the Supermarine back line paid off as he forced an error from a goal kick and capitalised with his second.
This was a decent performance, and a bit of a treat for the lads to play on a full size 1st team pitch in a very nice non-League ground. They gave a good account of themselves and did enough to see us into the hat for the Quarter Finals in January
Player of the Match
Robins U13 10-1 Highworth H
Robins ease through to League Cup Quarter Finals
After despatching Wootton Bassett in the last round we were drawn against their 3rd division contemporaries Highworth for the 2nd round. Conditions were perfect for football and the boys seemed fired up so all looked good to go.
But anyone who thought Highworth were turning up just to make up the numbers was in for a shock as they took advantage of some sluggish defending to take the lead early on. This seemed to galvanise the lads to step it up and they soon fought their way back to take control of the game. A superb ball from Lewis set Tom up to score the equaliser and now the boys started to flow the way we know they can.
Jowan stepped up with a piledriver before Morgan put his name on the scoresheet and then made a great run down the wing before squaring to Tom to get his second. Superb decision-making from Morgan and very unselfish play to set Tom up rather than try for goal himself. grabbed a couple of goals before Tom got his second with Morgan assisting. Just before half time, Toby played a lovely flick round the corner into Will who didn't hesitate to smash in a brilliant strike, our 5th goal to round out a good 1st half.
We started the second half in equally determined mood - "Kung Fu" Hockin got on the end of a lovely corner from Lewis with a spectacular flying kick to open the scoring in the second half. Alan added another and then set Jowan up for his second. What goes around and all that, as Jowan turned provider, this time for Morgan to score his second. As the game drew to a close JP took us into double figures to set the seal on what was a very good team performance (after a slightly shaky start) and see us progress to the last 8 of the competition.
- Tom (2)
- Jowan (2)
- Morgan (2)
- Josh H
- Josh P
Player of the Match
Robins U13 2-1 Salisbury FC Youth
Heroic 11 battle their way through to next round of County Cup
1st round proper of the County Cup saw us at home to Salisbury FC Youth, the youth team of the reformed semi-pro side now managed at adult level by Steve Claridge, The County Cup is an 11 v 11 competition which always puts a strain on 9v9 teams and today we had the bare 11 players as we had a few out due to injury and family commitments so always going to be a tough game.
With Toby playing up front, he latched onto a few through balls from Alan and could have had a couple of goals if it wasn't for the Salisbury keeper pulling off some tremendous saves in the first 10 minutes of the game. Robins had most of the possession in the first half with Lewis twisting and turning beating players, but just couldn't find the back of the net.
Jowan in midfield controlled the centre of the park by spreading it out wide to Morgan and Will so they could do some flicks and tricks and get some good crosses into the box. Tom broke the deadlock with a turn and shot from outside the box to lob the keeper in the 16th minute of the first half. The Robins continued to dominate for the rest of the half with Alan and Will both hitting the crossbar, but not finding the goal we needed to give us a cushion to go into halftime with.
Salisbury came out flying from the blocks at the start of the second period. Chivs made a few outstanding saves to keep our 1-0 intact, as our defence pulled their socks up and made light of any attack. That got us on the front foot, with Morgan coming close and Olisa with some power drivers. Toby slotted in nicely at the back, with JP moving to left midfield, and tracking back when needed. Lewis got a well-deserved goal after a great run, lofting it over the keeper who touched it with his fingers, but it was just too high for him.
Zak was confident with bringing the ball out from the back and looked like he might be looking to add to the tally. Chivs was called into action a few more times, but Salisbury scored a goal which the Robins would've been proud of, a very well-worked goal to possibly set up a nervy finish. It wasn't enough as Robins saw out the game quite comfortably in the end. This was another battling performance after last week's heroic effort and the lads deserved the win - some great work with no subs.
Player of the Match
Robins U13 3-3 FC Salisbury Utd
8-man Robins battle to a 6-goal draw
This week was our first meeting of the season with FC Salisbury, a quality outfit who we know will always give us a good game. And when you're coming up against one of the best teams in the league, you want your best players available so it was a bit of a blow to say the least to lose Sonny in the warm-up, especially as we already had two players unavailable due to family commitments and one pull out due to illness.
Still, that's the way it goes some weeks and we have confidence in our squad, although it did mean we started out a little disjointed. Salisbury came flying out of the blocks and to be honest were all over us, albeit without making the pressure count, but it's fair to say JP, Teddy, Zak and Chivs were all kept very busy!
So it was slightly against the run of play when on the counter, a very clever little flick from Lewis found Alan in space and he buried it to put us 1-0 up. Great finish from Alan, but brilliant work from Lewis to set him up, very clever creative play. That rocked Salisbury a little bit but they were soon back on it and Tom and Jowan were having to work really hard in the centre, a great partnership. Then yet another injury set back as Teddy went down winded from a strong challenge and had to come off, a real shame as he'd been having a great game at the back.
A quick reshuffle was required, as Tom dropped into the back and Josh pushed into midfield where he put in a very good, really hardworking performance. More good work from Alan, this time in combination with Josh, set Morgan free to finish well and double our lead with just under 10 minutes of the half remaining. But Salisbury struck back with a superb strike from distance, followed by another a couple of minutes later to send us into the half time break level.
Ordinarily you'd be disappointed at conceding a two goal lead so near to the end of the half, but given all the (enforced) changes we'd had to make and so many players being asked to play unfamiliar roles, we could only admire the hard work and great spirit the lads were showing. We started the second half better than the first and both teams settled down to some very entertaining football, real end to end stuff at times, with both teams desperate to get ahead but determined not to concede.
About 10 minutes in, Morgan was brought down in the box after some excellent work to carve out a chance and stepped up to take the resulting penalty which he calmly buried. Morgan had worked hard all game and deserved a goal for his efforts but sadly that was to be about his last contribution to the game as he too came off injured - the sideline was starting to look like the set of Casualty!
That left us with only 8 players, so Teddy bravely volunteered to come back on and hobble around up front, so that we would at least have the full 9 on the pitch even if he couldn't really put in a full performance. The lads decided on a switch of system to make the most of the personnel on the pitch and try to manage the game, which was a very proud moment for us as coaches - always brilliant to see the lads be able to take control of their own game.
There aren't many teams who could hold their own against Salisbury with (effectively) 8 men for 20 minutes, but the lads set about doing just that. And they held out brilliantly until with 2 minutes left, heartbreakingly, we just couldn't quite clear our lines, despite a superb double save from Chivs, and a deflected shot found it's way in to level the tie.
You couldn't complain about a draw, Salisbury had played well and been on top for much of the game and didn't deserve to come away with nothing. But our lads played like heroes today, and they put themselves on the line time and again to hold on to the lead, so to have it snatched away in the final moments when they'd worked so hard really felt like a cruel blow. Last week, we drew 3-3 away and the lads were, to be honest, a little disappointed. This week we drew 3-3 at home and we were delighted - it's all about context! We couldn't have been more proud of the lads though, the hard work they put in, the way they played in the face of all the obstacles put in their way and the way they took charge of their own game. Heroes, every single one of them.
Player of the Match
You genuinely couldn't pick a Player of the Match today, all of them battled incredibly hard and pushed themselves to give everything. Really really proud of all of them
FC Chippenham 3-3 Robins U13
Very much a game of two halfs!
Today saw our first visit of the season to the superb footballing venue at Stanley Park, and as usual the pitches were top quality. With a couple of the squad unavailable and a couple ill but bravely playing anyway, this was always going to be a tricky assignment. However, the early signs seemed good and we created a couple of decent chances and played some nice football. But focus seemed to drift as the first half wore on and we seemed to forget how to play football and play as a team which was disappointing. Chippenham took advantage of our lack of focus to grab a goal and could have got a couple more but for some decent keeping from Chivs.
So, one down at half time and we asked the players if this is how they thought they should be playing. They came up with a few ideas and resolved to try to play as a team and make better decisions. The response was swift and 2 minutes after the restart we equalized through some great teamwork, Tom making good space on the edge of the box and firing in a great shot, low and hard, the keeper got a hand to it but couldn't hold onto it and Morgan was on hand to smash the ball into the net.
But Chippenham soon restored their lead with a well-worked second goal, but unlike in the first half now the lads seemed to have some answers to the questions being asked of them. We were playing some nice football and Morgan was having his best game of the season so far. He was a constant threat down the right and one of his forays down the wing created a great chance for Will who unleashed an absolute thunderbolt into the top of the net that no keeper was stopping. Moments later, the same two were involved again as more good work from Morgan and Will saw the ball fall to Alan lying in wait at the back post to coolly slot home and put us ahead.
Heads now up, we created lots of good chances after this and by now we were playing something more like our normal fare, but just couldn't quite convert the chances into extending the lead. And it wasn't all one way either, as Chivs was called into action a few times, making a couple of excellent one-handed saves. One goal leads do leave you open to a "sucker punch" and 5 minutes from time the hard working and ever dangerous Chippenham left mid created a decent chance that led to the equaliser.
The lads worked hard to restore the lead and get the winner but in the end time ran out. On balance, a poor first half followed by a good second half, a draw was probably about right. If we'd played the way we did in the second half all the way through it could have been a very different story, but that's something the lads will learn from - if you never make any mistakes, you don't get the chance to improve!
Player of the Match
Robins U13 10-1 Wootton Bassett Yellow
Robins comfortably through to 2nd round of League Cup
Following last week's epic journey to the very edges of Wiltshire in the County Cup, this week saw us embark on another Cup journey, in the 1st round of the League Cup and this time we were drawn at home against Wootton Bassett Yellow, featuring ex-Robin Charley Mallard (among others!) in their line up.
The lads set out their stall early as Josh P created a great assist for Josh H to finish in the 1st 30 seconds, must be a contender for quickest goal of the season! Near the 10-minute mark Sonny played Jowan in for a fine finish to double the lead, then it was Jowan's turn to create the goal for Josh H's second.
Not long after Sonny's long ball in from the half way line seemed to take the massed ranks of both sides in and around the area by surprise and nestled into the corner of the net for an impressive long-range goal. Zak was next on the score-sheet, with Josh H the provider this time. And Lewis rounded off the scoring in the 1st half with a great individual run and brilliant finish.
We started the second half much as the first, with an early goal, this time Sonny got his second after latching on to a great ball in from Alan. After a further 5 minutes, Lewis scored his second and, again echoing the pattern of the 1st half, turned provider, this time for Will to open his account for the game.
Possibly the loudest cheer of the morning from both sets of supporters came as Bassett's forward latched on to a great ball out from their defence and with a strong individual run rounded the lone Robins defender and finished calmly to grab a goal for the visitors.
With Robins besieging the Bassett area, there was some excellent defending from the visitors - in particular from the keeper who pulled off a series of brilliant saves all game - to restrict the home team to just one more goal. Josh P making an excellent run down the wing before cutting inside to finish neatly and round off the morning's proceedings.
So a comfortable progression to the second round but some good football played by both teams in a match all the players enjoyed.
- Josh H (1)
- Jowan (8)
- Josh H (9)
- Sonny (10)
- Zak (16)
- Lewis (35)
- Sonny (36)
- Lewis (40)
- Will (51)
- Josh P (73)
Player of the Match
Alderbury Youth (Wilts County Cup) 0-9 Robins U13
Robins ease through 1st round of County Cup
The first round of this year's County Cup and the draw gave us a round trip of 86 miles to Alderbury Youth!
The format is 11v11 and for the first 20 mins the game was level, however we had plenty of shots but unfortunately many of them were off target. However, we were playing decent football and creating lots of chances. The defence were snuffing out the occasional opposition attack.
However in the 20th minute Teddy was set free and lashed in the first goal to break the deadlock. Two minutes later he was at it again and doubled our tally and his own. Teddy was having a blinder and 6 minutes later assisted for Will to smash in the 3rd. Teddy again assisted on the fourth goal and this time Morgan was the grateful recipient.
So 4-0 at half time, the team were playing well and keeping disciplined. The second half started and Toby, on his debut, soon got the fifth from close range. We had to wait a few minutes then for the next goal flurry, when Josh Hockin made a really brave header to connect with a great cross from Will. Alan was next up to score an absolute belter. Then Toby threaded a good pass to Alan who'd clearly developed a taste for this goalscoring and banged in a second. Finally, the scoring was completed by Sonny who was assisted by a pin-point pass from Jowan, terrific play lads!
So while it was a long old trip, it was an enjoyable run out - job done for the 1st round and let's hope the 2nd round draw is a little kinder on the mileage!
- Teddy (20)
- Teddy (22)
- Will (28)
- Morgan (32)
- Toby (42)
- Josh H (48)
- Alan (52)
- Alan (58)
- Sonny (65)
Player of the Match
Robins U13 4-3 Lydiard Youth
Winning start to the season!
The new season saw us start the campaign on familiar ground against familiar opposition but with a "novel" pitch layout which looked like the alien crop circlers had been at it. But that wasn't going to stop both teams playing some good football.
Lydiard struck first when a mistake playing out from the back put a Lydiard player clean through on goal and he wasted no time in burying the opportunity. These things will happen when you encourage the lads to try to play football in the right way, it can be risky at times, and we accept there will be the occasional mistake - not a problem, that's how players learn and develop.
Both teams played some good stuff and the keepers were both called on to make some good saves, also nice to see that despite the goal Chivs kept up with some great distribution from the back. With 10 minutes or so left of the first half, an overenthusiastic challenge on a Lydiard player making a good run toward goal led to a Lydiard penalty and it was well dispatched to double their lead.
Pleasingly, the lads didn't let their heads drop, and instead all redoubled their efforts and kept looking for a way to break down the Lydiard defence, some excellent work in the centre of the park from Jowan and the Lydiard defence always struggling to contain Lewis' tricky runs and skills. For all the good play in midfield, in the end it was a set piece that got us back into the game - with a few minutes left of the 1st half, Alan put in a superb corner that Tom rose majestically to nod home into the net, classic centre half's goal.
So we went into the break a much happier group and with momentum on our side and that certainly showed after the break - we came out firing, with Josh and Will both pressing hard up front. Their determination and persistence paid off when Teddy lobbed in a superb corner that the keeper could not handle and Josh was on hand to force the ball over the line to level the scores
Josh doubled his tally a few minutes later as again his pressing forced a defensive error in playing out from a goal kick, in similar fashion to the opening goal of the game, and he finished calmly to put us ahead.
But Lydiard weren't finished and another strong attack saw them awarded yet another penalty, a little more arguable than the first, but if the ref says it's a pen, then that's what it is. Chivs did well to go the right way and get a hand to it, but it was an absolute net buster and no keeper would have been able to get a strong enough hand on it to stop it going in and draw the scores level once more.
With the game evenly balanced, both teams had some good attacks, Sonny, Tom and Olisa all working hard at the back to keep Lydiard out, while at the other end Will, Lewis and Morgan all had good attacks snuffed out. But yet again set pieces proved Lydiard's undoing as Teddy's wonderful curling effort deceived the Lydiard keeper and defence to sneak in and seal the winner.
In the end, we were good value for the win in what was a bit of an odd game. Scrappy in places but with some good football played by both teams in patches, it was odd that all that good creative play in all departments didn't result in any of the goals - all the goals coming from individual errors and set pieces. But the biggest thing we took from this was the character and resilience the lads showed in coming back from 2 down to eventually take the win. no-one's heads dropped, they just kept playing good football and in the end got the reward they deserved. A promising start.
- Tom (34)
- Josh (39)
- Josh (40)
- Teddy (58)
Player of the Match
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