Raptors U9’s record first win of 2018

TAFC Raptors U9's v. Reigate U9's

6 - 2

RAPTORS U9’S V’s REIGATE U’9s

3/02/2018
Bushy Park
Score 6-2

The passing and pressing have been present in the last two games. Today we added the magic ingredient... goals!

Billy Hall scored the Raptors first. Billy kept his eye on a bouncing ball, allowing it to drop over his left shoulder before swivelling and hitting a left foot volley into the top right hand corner of the goal.

Moments later Billy scored our second after a fine run down the right wing from Lennon Chalmers. Lennon’s low right foot shot was parried into the path of Billy who was in the right place at the right time to tap in his second.

The third was our best team goal. Daniel Jolly found some space in midfield and threaded the ball through to Billy. The raptors found themselves in a two against one situation and Billy unselfishly laid the ball off to Lennon who finished with only the goaly to beat!

Cormac Sims maintained our lead with a few instinctive saves from close range shots.

Max Rankin worked hard up front in the second half and his efforts were rewarded when his snake like dribble resulted in an assist for Tom Mullins, who calmly executed to finish off the move.

Tom soon notched his second when his well hit low cross evaded the opposition defence and goaly and ended up in the net.

Lennon Chamlers scored the raptors sixth and final goal with a rare left foot finish at the near post.

Apologies to those who do not get a mention as all ten players played well today.

Onwards and upwards for the Raptors!

Raptors U9’s record first win of 2018

v.

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RAPTORS U9’S V’s REIGATE U’9s

3/02/2018
Bushy Park
Score 6-2

The passing and pressing have been present in the last two games. Today we added the magic ingredient... goals!

Billy Hall scored the Raptors first. Billy kept his eye on a bouncing ball, allowing it to drop over his left shoulder before swivelling and hitting a left foot volley into the top right hand corner of the goal.

Moments later Billy scored our second after a fine run down the right wing from Lennon Chalmers. Lennon’s low right foot shot was parried into the path of Billy who was in the right place at the right time to tap in his second.

The third was our best team goal. Daniel Jolly found some space in midfield and threaded the ball through to Billy. The raptors found themselves in a two against one situation and Billy unselfishly laid the ball off to Lennon who finished with only the goaly to beat!

Cormac Sims maintained our lead with a few instinctive saves from close range shots.

Max Rankin worked hard up front in the second half and his efforts were rewarded when his snake like dribble resulted in an assist for Tom Mullins, who calmly executed to finish off the move.

Tom soon notched his second when his well hit low cross evaded the opposition defence and goaly and ended up in the net.

Lennon Chamlers scored the raptors sixth and final goal with a rare left foot finish at the near post.

Apologies to those who do not get a mention as all ten players played well today.

Onwards and upwards for the Raptors!

Wolves U12s learn achievement matters more than the score, as depleted team takes on AFC Dara

AFC Dara U12s v. TAFC Wolves U12s

4 - 2

27th Jan 2018
Kick off: 9.30am
Away

In Youth football, achievement matters more than the score. So it was when the Wolves, depleted by illness and injury, made their way to the home ground of the league leaders, AFC Dara.

Team Coach Russ explained the plan to the 8-man Wolves and they took to the field. Forgoing their usual attacking pattern, the Wolves chose to play without a centre forward and strike on the counter instead. This tactic quickly paid off when Finley started an attack down the left flank that was finished by Oisin.

Dara then applied sustained pressure on the Wolves goal. Will made excellent saves to tip several shots over the crossbar, but a series of accurate corners into a crowded 6 yard box led to the first Dara goal. 1-1 at half time.

Reinforcements had arrived for Dara in the form of a substitute player, allowing them to bring on fresh legs against the tiring Wolves. Dara pressed their advantage and scored twice, but Wolves refused to lie down.  Defenders Jed, Jack, Panya and Joshie broke up attack after attack while Finley, Oisin and Aidan fought for every cleared ball. Then a moment of magic: Aidan surges forward and deftly moves the ball around the onrushing keeper. Unfortunately the subsequent foul prevented Aidan from slotting the ball home.

At a different level this may have had a more decisive effect on the game, but nonetheless Aidan dusted himself off to deliver the free kick over to Oisin, who powered the ball into the net.

Dara’s quality forwards then struck again to finish the game 4-2 up. The Wolves, though tired and sore, can be immensely proud of the endeavour and tenacity they showed today.

Raptors U9s puts in the best performance since promotion to division (arguably)

TAFC Raptors U9s v. Worcester Park U9s

2 - 3

RAPTORS U9’S V’s WORCESTER PARK

27/01/2018
Bushy Park
Score 2-3

This was arguably our best performance since being promoted to division. The boys deserved a draw at least from this game and it was a bitter pill to swallow to lose after surrendering a two goal lead.

We dominated the first half with great pressing and passing but could not capitalise on our possession and went into the break drawing 0-0.

Daniel Jolly broke the deadlock for the Raptors early into the second half when his low shot pinballed off the post and keeper into the goal.

The Raptors second goal was a bizarre own goal after a mix up between the opposition goaly and defender.

With just 10 minutes to go the Raptors looked like heading towards their first win of 2018... but sadly it was not be. Credit has to be given to the opposition who scored two well worked goals in quick succession.

Then in the final minute disaster struck. The referee saw a challenge in the raptors penalty box that the rest of us could not and awarded a penalty. Lennon Chamlers saved brilliantly from the spot kick diving low to his right, but the opposition striker was quick to react and fired home from the rebound. A cruel blow to the boys who had all worked so hard and played so well.

Despite the score line, the boys must take encouragement from their performance which can hopefully spur us on to our first win.

Raptors U9’s earn draw in tight contest against Horsley Eagles

Horsley Eagles v. TAFC Raptors U9s

2 - 2

RAPTORS U9’S, EARN DRAW IN TIGHT CONTEST AGAINST HORSLEY EAGLES.

20/01/2018
Toms Field. Horsley
Score 2-2

The game against Gemini U9’s the previous week is thankfully now a distant memory.

This was the performance we had hoped for to start the new year. The passing and desire to win had all returned and the team showed great spirit to come back from 2-0 down.

The first half saw the Raptors passing back to its best. Lennon Chalmers and Cormac Sims both made driving runs down the right side.

Hayden Elliot stood out playing in an unfamiliar left midfield role, running up and down the left flank, covering huge distances, attacking and defending all at once!

Jarvis Moore made a great save, tipping a long range effort from Horsley on to the bar. The Raptors held on until the dying moments of the first half when Horsley broke the deadlock.

The opening ten minutes of the second half saw the Raptors pinned into their own penalty box, soaking up wave after wave of attack until the inevitable happened and we conceded again.

Not to be deterred the Raptors bounced back immediately from the kick off. Jarvis Moore pounced on a loose ball, broke free of the opposition defence and beat the goaly in a one on one situation.

The goal lifted the Raptors (and travelling supporters) spirits. Lennon Chalmers playing in right midfield, spotted Jarvis’ run up front and curled a long range Beckham esque pass to his feet and Jarvis once again beat the goaly.

In an almost identical move a few moments later it could have been 3-2 to the Raptors. Chalmers long range pass picked out Moore whose shot was blocked by a defenders arm. In the absence of VAR technology, the referee deemed this to be ‘ball to hand’... which was probably the correct decision. The Raptors held on in the final minutes with some great saves by Cormac Sims to earn the team a well earned draw!

Hopefully the result will give the team a lift and we can go on to secure our first win of 2018!

GO RAPTORS!

In the end 2-2 was probably a fair result as both teams played very well.

Sent from my iPhone

First game of the new year for Dragons a record breaker. Probably.

TAFC U10 Dragons v. Kingswood Blues U10

2 - 1

The Dragon’s enjoyed a luxury late morning KO at Udney Park after a clean sweep there the week before helped the boys back into playing ways post Christmas break.

The well drilled Kingswood Blues presented a tough challenge on their home turf and expectations were of a tight game. The final score suggests as much, but the reality was an impressive Dragons display containing everything a convincing win should, bar a large increase to the ‘for’ goals column.

The story of the match was two halves of confident build-up play creating possibly the highest number of goal-bound attempts without scoring that under 10s football has ever seen. Guinness World Records will report back. The first half saw centre backs Bishop and Firebrace feeding the voracious appetites of Danson and Holloway whose drag-backs, spin turns and layoffs into the paths of strikers White and Humphries were reminiscent of a best of FIFA ’17 out-take reel. However, White’s sole conversion - a tap in after fine build up play - felt like scant reward for such imposing play from the Dragons.

A couple of well-judged interceptions from keeper Atherton and a few great examples of playing simple balls back towards their own goal showed the Dragons handling the pressure generated by a determined Kingswood side very well indeed.

The second half saw birthday boy Humphries take leave to stuff party bags, bringing Max Bayon’s expansive game into play. The broader attack created the change in dynamic the Dragons needed to maintain their superiority, creating chance after chance but like the first half the Blues goal led a charmed life. Against the run of play, the Blues equalised with an innocuous free kick punted goalward from outside the box, inadvertently flicked goalward by Bishop to level at 1-1.

The Dragons did more than hold tight. They neutralised the Blues inevitable post equaliser surge with a display of calm control through the back and flanks, driving even more opportunities as the half wore on. The deadlock was finally broken in late, dramatic fashion. Bodhi White ran onto a Blues half-clearance after sustained Dragons pressure. His first time shot/cross took a slight but meaningful deflection looping the ball over the well-worked visiting ‘keeper where the persistent Liam Holloway had stolen away unmarked at the far post - making his cushioned diving header a formality to seal the result with literally the last touch of the game.

A fine Dragons performance from back to front. Despite the exciting finish and the significant numbers of attempts creatively fashioned on goal – it’s telling that the MOM award went to Herbie Bishop, whose role in the game - and in general in an increasingly impressive team unit, showed the increasing value of the steady specialisation the boys are embracing with aplomb.

Line-up: Atherton, Bishop, Firebrace, Danson, Humphries, Holloway, Bayon, White

Go Dragons!  Next up Oxshott Royals Reds (H) 20.1.18

Bobcats tamed on frozen hillside

Beecholme Bobcats v. TAFC U12 Girls

2 - 2

Beecholme Bobcats 2-2 Teddington Athletic FC U12 Girls

7/1/2018

The table-topping U12s got 2018 up and running with their first draw of the season in a hard-fought game in cold, wintry conditions in the delightfully-named Nork Park.

Despite being halfway up a hillside on a pitch carved into the cliff face to develop a grassy wind tunnel that chilled spectators and players to the bone, Teddington started strongly. Milla’s curling left-wing crosses immediately caused alarms in the home defence with Jess O’Shea narrowly failing to convert one good chance. A short corner brought the breakthrough on 9 minutes, Chloe taking the ball from Milla, jinking past a defender and delivering a perfect ball to the near post where Jess O’Shea darted across her market to exquisitely flick home the opener.

At that point, it looked as though Teddington might be on for a good day against a team that have traditionally been tough to beat. But just three minutes later, and against the run of play, Beecholme equalised with a fine drilled finish into the bottom corner. Teddington regained the lead after 19 minutes when Milla’s cross found Chloe who finished well into the top corner to make it 2-1 and in the final minutes of the half Teddington dominated, twice going close to extending their lead through fine efforts from Chloe and a surging JJ.

They were left to rue those missed opportunities just four minutes into the second half when they found themselves out of position and outnumbered as they vainly defended a counter-attack and could only watch as Beecholme’s energetic midfielder ran from the halfway line to slot home the equaliser.

For the remainder of the half, the game ebbed and flowed, but never really caught fire as the biting cold left everyone waiting for the final whistle. There was plenty of endeavour but neither side could find the winner. One brilliant run from Milla nearly ended with a goal of season contender but the Bobcats keeper smothered, as she did again two minutes from time when Gemma burst clear with an eye on extending her pre-Christmas goalscoring run. There was just time for Beecholme to nearly snatch a late winner but the game ended level with both sides deserving of praise for their level of effort in hostile conditions.

 

TAFC team: Sophie, Beth, Vivie, Izzy, Gemma, Milla, Ava, Scarlett, Johanna, Chloe, JJ, Jess

Goals: Jess O’Shea, Chloe

Player of the Match: Milla

Mature Dragons performance maintains winning run in deepest Croydon

9.12.17
Shelton Athletic U10 – 0 TAFC U10 Dragons – 2 (Danson, White)

Up with the larks and a cross-country dash to the wide expanse of Shelton’s home ground – nicely defrosted by the pixies and their mini hairdryers – the Dragons took formation against similarly football-minded side Shelton Athletic.  A classic 7 a side match with no subs available for either team and a worried Management duo knowing several sleep overs had taken place the night before.

It was to be a game of two halves – not the end-to-end ding-dong you’d expect if you just read this line in the Guardian/Times/Telegraph. Eh? Oh sorry, Sun/Mirror/Other Rag of choice…but an extremely useful experience nonetheless.

The Dragons started well employing a high press and early signs were positive as lone stand in striker White benefited from a tuned in midfield trio of Bayon, Goodall and Danson. Goodall showed perseverance and solidity on the right side of midfield – a towering performance that bodes well for the post-Christmas break. Go George.

The breakthrough came quite early, with build up through Bayon and White, and a neat layoff to Danson who needed no prompting to open the Dragons account for the day.  On the stroke of half time White’s constant terrier like hounding of the opposition defence paid dividends as he created his own space to slot home to make it two to the Dragons without reply to take us to half time

The second half didn’t so much let Shelton back into the game as much as the Dragons eased off somewhat from their more intense first half display. A deeper set team allowed Shelton to come forward more often but the assured nature of how the Dragons dealt with it was inspiring, – none more so than the back three trio – goalkeeper Atherton’s confident handling and punching, and on-way-to bona-fide superstar centre back pairing of Firebrace and Bishop – the latter earning a well-deserved MOM award – whose second half efforts were workman like and showed again how this team is developing maturity beyond its tender years.

Not a classic performance, but touches of class were evident and if this Dragon side can win and maintain a clean sheet away from home while not playing to their best for the entire 50 minutes, we’ll gladly add it to the memory banks to draw on in future games.

Last 6 matches results: L L W W W W

Go Dragons!  Next up Kingswood Blues (Home) 16.12.17

 

Visiting dignitaries approve Dragons latest win

TAFC 10 Dragons v. Cobham Comets

3 - 0

A higher than usual ‘Grandparent quotient’ witnessed the Dragons extending their unbeaten run to three wins in a row. We should marvel at their excellent timing and of course delightful pitch-side etiquette. The stakes were high as the Dragons sought to avenge a 2-1 defeat at the Comets in the first game of the season.

A Dragons side missing talismanic attacking midfielder Bodhi White found good balance from back to front with regular centre-back pairing Herbie Bishop and Jack Firebrace underpinning an attacking midfield trio of George Goodhall, Felix Danson and Liam Holloway.

The midfield generals made their presence felt in the first half as Holloway drilled a long range shot against the bar before Danson opened the scoring after sustained pressure – and great following up - from the Dragons. Despite missing a penalty, the Dragons went for their half time oranges with good reason for optimism – one up and a solid defensive performance.

Early in the second half the Dragons prolific opportunity-engine delivered again as neat interchange play set up Seth Humphries to slot in after Max Bayon and Zach Littig had bossed the left and right-hand channels respectively for a sustained period.

Then the Dragons hit the pause button, allowing Cobham back into the game possession and opportunity-wise – obliging Dragons keeper Jacob Atherton to earn his corn and a man of the match award to boot. Three fine saves in a row including a strong handed flick onto the bar of a bullet-like shot heading **top bins** secured the accolade and kept the Dragons ahead.

The Dragons re-engaged only to find Cobhams keeper also in inspired form but Seth Humphrie’s predatory instinct was rewarded with a second goal after a weak clearance from the otherwise sterling Comets keeper was dispatched with style.

Three-nil it finished. Another assured performance from the Dragons – a clean sheet to top off a solid attacking display. Grandparents welcome every week.

** apparently this means “top corner”

Go Dragons!  Next up Cobham Comets (H) 2.12.17