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WAREHAM RANGERS vs WOOL & WINFRITH U-12s: 9-0 (23/11/14)

posted 24 Nov 2014, 00:53 by Simon McCabe


 Parents of Wareham Rangers U-12s must have wondered whether their sons had been abducted and secretly replaced by imposters as, while the team sheet remained substantially the same as for the first game of the season which they lost 5-2 to this weekend’s opponents, the performance was unrecognisable. Rangers romped home scoring 9 for no reply to cement their lofty league position.

 In truth, from the 6th minute, when Joe won the ball in midfield and whipped in a cross which Christian dummied for Dannon to score at the far post, this game never looked like being a repeat of the away fixture. Rangers battered the visitors’ goal, principally the side netting, for the next 10 minutes, Harry in particular peppering the visitors with shots and crosses, before James saw a gap through the middle, punted a long kick from the hand for Christian to gather, burst through and bury a left footed shot low to the corner for 2-0. A great assist from the keeper and even the home side’s footballing purist Manager had to applaud this classic exposition of ‘Route 1’ football. A minute later and it was 3-0, the away keeper only being able to palm Harry’s shot onto the post for Christian to snaffle up the loose ball. Joe made it 4-0 with a well-placed, firmly struck shot from outside the box.

 Wool & Winfrith had their first shot on target in the 25th minute of the first half but it did not signal a revival in their fortunes as the irrepressible Christian picked the ball up in his own half, ran the remaining length of the field and cut inside to finish a first-half hat-trick in style. The visitors persevered though and former Rangers boy Owen hit a dangerous free-kick over the Wareham wall only to see it well saved by James. Any other hint of a Wool attack was snuffed out by Gabe, commanding at the centre of defence, Alfie or Ethan, reliable as ever either side of him.

 The home Manager rung the changes at half-time with Nathan, Samuel, George and Luke replacing Christian, Callum, Ethan and Alfie. As in other recent games the performance of the subs matched that of the starting players as Rangers went on to score four more. A visionary pass by Dannon set Nathan off on a run which bewitched the opposition defence and ended with a classy shot to make it 6-0 within a minute of the restart. Nathan then returned the favour to set up Dannon for 7-0 in the 46th minute. Nathan got his second to make it 8-0 after a titanic goal mouth scramble which started in the 48th minute and went on to the 49th. Ethan capped a battling performance in defence in the first half and a skilful one on the left wing in the second with Wareham’s 9th goal – a short range shot after Samuel’s headed effort was unfortunate not to go in from Joe’s corner. Nathan would have claimed Wareham’s second hat-trick of the game were it not for some brave saves by the Wool keeper. Callum also narrowly missed out on a goal after creating his own chance only to see the shot skim past the far post.

 Wool & Winfrith threatened more in the second half but were repeatedly thwarted by Wareham’s dogged defending: Gabe intercepted several dangerous balls, and he, Luke and George all blocked firmly struck, goal-bound shots from the plucky visitors. The home team even survived a kamikaze clearance by James who raced miles out of his box to shovel both ball and man over the touchline – fortunately in that order. But the clean sheet was just reward for the keeper and those in front.

 Assistant Manager Kev Keates commented: ‘Spurred on by the opportunity to gain bragging rights at school tomorrow, it was nice to see the boys boss the game from the start this week and show a better level of commitment in their tackling than we had seen in previous weeks. They continued to play their attacking football and scored some great goals while James and the boys at the back dealt with the Wool threat brilliantly, refusing to let them get a foothold in the game which all helps keep the momentum going as we head into a tricky run of fixtures in the coming weeks.’

Pete Moore