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posted 18 Feb 2015, 04:57 by Simon McCabe


There have been times this season when it has been a pleasure to watch Wareham Rangers U12s storm their way up the league with their neat passing and ruthless finishing.  Unfortunately, today wasn’t one of them as fellow title chasers Ringwood showed the home team no mercy in this top of the table six-pointer.

It started well enough with a firmly struck goal for Christian within a couple of minutes of the kick off.  Harry, Luke and Joe then all went close with powerful shots but Rangers were unable to take their chances in the opening ten minutes.  Soon after, a Ringwood free kick on the corner of the Wareham penalty area was so firmly struck that James was only able to palm it into the top of the net.  The Manager’s appeal from the side-lines for Wareham to ‘liven it up’ went unheeded and the confidence seemed to drain from his players like they had just realised the importance of this, their penultimate game of the season, to their league position.  As if to emphasise the point, another Ringwood free kick from deep made it 1-2 on the stroke of half-time.

Ringwood’s confidence seemed to grow as Wareham’s declined and a speculative lob early in the second half exposed the Wareham keeper’s only weakness – height – to make it 1-3.  It was then down to James to keep Wareham hopes alive with several fantastic saves over the next 10 minutes of a Ringwood onslaught.  The introduction of Callum, George and Samuel (on for Nathan, Luke and Alfie) was not enough to turn things around and the visitors snuffed out all hope with 10 minutes remaining in a classy counter attacking move to make it 1-4.  Last ditch tackles by Gabe and Ethan and a goal line clearance by George spared the home team further blushes, and by the time they had woken up to put Christian through for his second goal of the game, it was too late to mount a serious fight-back.

Manager Darren Mears commented: ’Today felt like a game too far.  There was none of the usual spring in our step which resulted in one of the most lacklustre and lacking in desire performances we have given this season.  Apart from a 15 minute spell in the first half our passing game was missing which left us struggling to mount any sustained pressure against a solid, well organised and spirited Ringwood side who thoroughly deserved their victory’.