Horwich St Mary's Victoria Reserves 3 - 0 Old Blacks Reserves

Sometimes you have to hold your hand up and accept when you’re second best, and this was one of those days.
It started badly by us going to the wrong ground, due to the incorrect postcode being on the league website.

I knew, when we finally turned up at the right place that Horwich were up for this game. They have an impressive set up, and they were already on the pitch doing there drills etc when we turned up half changed, with less than half an hour to kick off.

Onto the game, and I feel that I have to take some of the blame for the defeat, because we were not set up right to start with, and also not prepared for what was to come.
Straight from the kick off Horwich were at us and moving the ball wide quickly. The 1st goal came after a ball in the box landed at Lewis Fielding’s feet. Lewis took a touch when the ball should have been cleared first time. The touch allowed their forward to nip in and tap the ball home from 5 yards out.

We soon went 2 down, after a harmless looking ball from outside the area, landed in between 2 defenders, and onto the Horwich players head, and into the top corner of our net. I felt for the first time in a few years that we were heading for a big defeat. The lads were down, and little arguments were starting to be heard around the pitch.

Somehow we held out till half time without conceding. If we had gone in 5 down I couldn't have complained.

A few honest words at half time were needed, and a response from the lads would have to be instant, and it soon became apparent that Horwich had thrown everything at us in the 1st half. We now looked the stronger team, and although we never dominated them totally, I realised that I just didn't set us up right. They were no better than us, they just were more organised in the first half, and wanted it more. If someone had walked up and not seen the 1st half they would not have believed we were 2-0 down, and been lucky not to be more goals behind.

Both Rick Mcguirty and Guiny were getting more of the ball down the wings, and we were creating chances. We pushed, but didn't really have enough to break Horwich down, but we did show we were up near the top of the league for a reason.

Horwich killed the game off, when we lost possession in the middle of the pitch, and a through ball allowed the striker to go past Mark Smith on the edge of the area and tap in. Horwich had a couple more chances, but a mixture of good keeping, and solid defending, kept them out.

Thankfully the whole team showed real character in the 2nd half, and restored some pride. We have to remember that we are a very young team, and that will only improve if we stick together.