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Poor AS/GCSE side surrender meekly in Albemarle battle

12 Feb 2016

League match – 12th February 2016

Ealing Independent College AS/GCSE 0-2 Albemarle College

Team: Zak, Danial, Thomas, Acil, Enver, Kai (Georges), Isaga, Ryan

Another week, another game where they started against fewer players than they had, another poor performance … another loss. What is perhaps most frustrating about watching the AS/GCSE side at the moment is their dedication to committing the same mistakes game after game. They played last night like a group of strangers who had never met each other and yet still tried the sort of flicks and touches that even Barcelona would not try in their own half of the pitch. Perhaps the team should remember in their next game against Ealing A2 that they are not Barcelona. On this showing, they need a complete rethink.

It must have seemed like de ja vu when Albemarle’s poorly organised captain had been unable to get enough players to Westway for the kick off at 6pm. Pleading to delay the game until the rest of their players came, the Ealing boss negotiated a 6.20pm start, whether they had 8 or not. As it happened, Albemarle kicked off with 6 players – one more than David Game College had last week. The AS/GCSE team had experience of this situation and surely could not do the same as in their last game. Albemarle intelligently sat extremely deep, keeping one player up. Ealing proceeded to play keep ball at the back. It was refreshing to see some passing from the team for once, but it was going nowhere – the side in purple would not be drawn out. Enver struck a good free kick which forced the Albemarle goalie into action, but that was as good as it got in terms of chances created for the reds.

Told before the game not to give the ball away in their own half under any circumstances, Acil promptly decided, perhaps due to the lack of any cutting edge in front of him, to go on a mazy run. He was tackled and then two phases of play later, Albemarle worked an opening to find their short blonde winger-turned-striker who clipped in a neat finish past Zak, re-established as goalkeeper. By now Albemarle were back to their full complement, but that didn’t stop them dishing out some desperate, meaty challenges against the reds. Isaga in particular was targeted for rough treatment. At least three challenges rained in on him, and eventually the referee produced two long overdue yellow cards to Albemarle players. Still, 1-0 down and no headway was being made. If the reds are not good when on level terms, they are certainly not good when behind. Play became ragged and players who, up until now had been silent, started to shout angry slurs at their teammates. As if to laugh in the face of their predicament, they tried even more elaborate dribbling runs, stepovers and dummies. Things could only go from bad to worse.

With three minutes left, if ever a goal could sum up the AS/GCSE sides’ failings, Albemarle went two goals up. Enver played a blind pass backwards to no one especially and time seemed to stand still as the blonde Albemarle front man stole in while the Ealing defence stood and watched. He despatched his second beyond Danial with a sense of ease as the Albemarle ‘groupies’ cheered from the sidelines. It was a thoroughly depressing end to an equally depressing game.

Man of the Match: Acil

Once again, the only player who can really hold his head high at the end of this game was Acil. He was committed, selfless and energetic throughout, despite the circumstances of the loss.

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