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A2 side snatch victory in tense derby encounter

18 Dec 2015

League match – 17th December 2015

Ealing Independent College A2 1-0 Ealing Independent College AS/GCSE

A2 Team: Azim, Jamie G, Mohamed, Jamie C, Gere (Malcolm), Hamze, Krystian, Evan

AS/GCSE Team: Sultan, Enver (Subhan), Hasan, Zak, Georges (Thomas), Kai, Acil, Ryan (Isaga)

Goal scorer: Hamze

An edgy atmosphere played stage to the first ever Ealing Independent College derby match at Westway Sports Centre last night. Both sides were looking resplendent in new kits, but it was clear that nerves were jangling on both sides before kick-off. This transmitted onto the pitch where a scrappy opening to the match ensued. It seemed that no one wanted to make a mistake, and so long balls rather than short passing was the order of the day to keep the ball away from any danger areas. Azim was particularly profligate here, the A2 keeper punting numerous goal kicks straight out of play when looking for Evan up front. The AS/GCSE side certainly settled first, and through Hasan, Zak and Enver, enjoyed some sustained possession in their own half, moving the ball nicely. They were however unable to create any clear chances against an A2 side who sat deep in a rigid shape, aimed at giving away nothing. Hasan hit a vicious long shot, but Azim was not concerned.

The first half, after such an extensive build-up to the game throughout the whole week at college, was a damp squib. The first ten minutes of the second half saw a complete momentum shift. Some scrappy play by the AS/GCSE team allowed the A2 side to get some territory, and a crisp through ball by Malcolm found Hamze with enough space to lash a shot through Sultan’s legs and into the net. The delirious celebrations which followed made it clear how important the goal was. It took the younger side a few minutes to regain their composure. In the meantime, Jamie C had a header pushed away by Sultan, and Hamze rained in another long shot which the year 10 did well to block with his foot. Some new introductions to the game clawed the momentum back in the AS/GCSE side’s favour. Isaga went on a slaloming run which ended with a shot which whistled past the post, and Zak and Thomas brought a fine double save from Azim. It was becoming clear that the A2 team were running of energy and would be content to sit back and hold on to their slender advantage.

They stood resolute though. The reds were struggling to make any real headway until Isaga wriggled through and laid off to Hasan. They finally had a gilt-edged chance, and Hasan had the ball on his favoured right foot. When the maverick Iraqi had the chance to equalise, he blazed his effort high and wide. With that, the AS/GCSE sides’ chance to get a point had gone. They strained every sinew to get another clear-cut opportunity but it did not emerge. At the final whistle, the A2 side celebrated but had to admit they were shaded in terms of territory and possession by their younger rivals. Not a good game, but an excellent level of friendly competition which is a great advert for football at the College.

Man of the Match: Jamie C

The terrier-like midfielder enjoyed his best outing so far in an Ealing shirt. He blunted many AS/GCSE attacks in the second half and stewarded the dangerous Zak very well.


For more images from the match you can take a look at the photo gallery.

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