ROBIN HOOD ATHLETIC 3 POOL AFC 2
By Matt Wright
It was back to league action at the coach ground as Robin Hood faced a Pool Team who like ourselves needed the points
Today saw Alex, Coupie and Harold miss out through injury and unavailability. With Browny, Rich, Woody and Tunney returning to the squad.
The message was simple, we’ve played well the majority of the season can we transform that into points.
We started quick against a team like us needed the points and we quickly had them on the back foot. Some good work from Declan Ligger and Dale saw an opening for the inform Danny Bridges, only for Danny to drag it wide. We quickly created a second as a great lifted pass from Widgey found Ligger who poked it over the keeper but agonisingly wise. A carbon copy ball from Widgey then allowed Bulby in but this time helped onto the roof of the goal.
Pool to their credit are a tidy team, clearly not getting the rub of the green as they offered more than a lot of clubs we’ve played this year. We restricted them to long range shots that were dealt with well by the returning Lee Wood who brought a calming influence to the squad.
The defenders were sharp and decisive not giving them a sniff and over attacking threat was again at its best when James Finlayson was found at the back post unmarked, only to strike over.
We went in at HT 0-0 and with the amount of possession and chances created it was only a matter of time before we took the lead. To do that we had to match their enthusiasm as they were bound to get a rocket from their gaffa and improve.
The second half started much the same, Bridges finding space behind that allowed us to press a further 10 yards as they dropped off. We again created chances, too many to mention but the same result as non converted. The positive was the solid base at the back that allowed our midfield to create and the forwards to use their movement.
Against the run of Play a goal for Pool, we were found out and the players know how. Basics and bravery alluded is for a moment and we now chased the game. 0-1
To our credit we went straight back to how we were and attacked. We made a few changes to positively effect the game, 1 enforced as browny came off and 1 tactical as Corey took Bulby place.
With Tunney now on it allowed Declan to find space and a quite brilliant ball to Jinky was squared for ‘sniffer’ Bridges to tap home 1-1. It wasn’t left there as we then forced a free kick that could quite easily have been a penalty. Declan then delivered a great ball that Lewis found tremendous hang time to and powered home. 2-1 and it was in fairness what we deserved. The referee indicated 4 minutes of injury time and with what was possibly the last kick of the game, a ball lumped in was not dealt with as they simply tapped home to all but seal a surprise point.
Ligger and Jinky with one last attack from the KO went forward playing 2 1, 2s.. a corner. Declan again produced a great delivery where Ligger won the header and Jinky lashed home to claim the winner. 3-2. Ligger counted the remaining 10seconds down to aid the referee as the game finished 3-2.
Not good for the heart but a great result non the less. A game we deserved right from the start as our application was top draw. We put ourselves in a position where we could have dropped points, we must stop this weakness and apply ourselves correctly.
Today everyone was good from back to front. Woody set the tone and Jinky got the winner his hard work has deserved. Ligger, and Declan found tremendous space and played pure football at times. Lewis grows each game looking beyond his years and Spencer again looked right on point. Declan claimed MOM from the lads and it’s a show that football these days is more than just smashing folk and kicking it as long as possible. We are establishing an identity now and a style of Play that really suits, with the players believing and showing conviction in what’s asked of them.
The game could and should have been won by a huge margin, but we never do it easy. The pool manager commented that we deserved the win which often can’t be said for the opposite managers. Credit to pool they displayed a really determination to win and they are much better than the league suggests. I wish them well with the remaining games this season, apart from the return leg.
A tough game next week away at surprise top 2 side Ilkley. They will be looking for revenge for a Hood win at the start of the season, but if we approach the game in the same way we will be hard to beat. The players must show this consistent form to achieve this though.
Thanks for your growing support