U15 Girls Pull a Christmas Cracker



Rushmoor Saints FC 3 - 4 TAFC U15 Girls

Teddington Athletic U15 Girls gave their manager and supporters an early Christmas present today at Rushmoor Saints FC in Aldershot (15/12/2018). Rushmoor were unbeaten in the league, only conceeding 6 goals in 8 games, and sitting on top of the Division 1 table before this game. Yet it was a dynamic Teddington who upset the form book, fighting back to win this match in thrilling style.

Rushmoor Saints haven't relied on divine intervention for their lofty league position, they've done so because they are a formidable, skilful and well-drilled outfit. Within the first two minutes of the match they had shown their class with a sweeping passing move that dissected the Teddington defence (1-0). They are the archetypal iron hand in a velvet glove, full of power in midfield and silky on the attack. Teddington tried to resist but Rushmoor dominated the first 20 minutes, Jess making a series of saves, and the defence stretched to its limits. Emily was getting a few half chances in attack, Kitty was brave as she threw herself at the Rushmoor defence. A heavy collision took her from the pitch and Willow came in as an able replacement. Issy and Neave were worked hard by the opposition wingers but both grew into their roles, often holding up the waves of Rushmoor attacks. Catia plugged many a gap in the midfield, her tireless running was emblematic of Teddington's desire and spirit. 

The momentum of the first half switched in Teddington's favour as they started to string their passes together. A sweet triangulated move between Abi, Emma and Kate gave Emily a shot on goal. On the right, Issy and Willow supplied Catia with an opportunity for a cheeky lob. Yet it was from the scrappiest of chances that Teddington equalised, Emily pounced on the Rushmoor keeper and Willow squirted the ball into the net (1-1). Rushmoor fought back immediately and Jess stopped a piledriver from a free-kick. Although Lydia and Harriet were tidying up all the loose ball around the Teddington box it wasn't long before Rushmoor took the lead once again. A deft dipping shot from outside the area was unstoppable (2-1). Teddington's endeavour didn't waver, they played their creative football through the middle of the pitch where Emma in particular, supported by Willow and Sophia, linked in smart interplay. The clearest of chances come when defence switches to attack and it was Abi who was the master today. First she won the ball in midfield and then threaded a pass to Emily who buried the ball in the Rushmoor goal (2-2).

Rushmoor took the whip hand in the opening 10 minutes of the second half. They thrust forward, testing Jess with a number of full stretch saves. Desperate to steer the game back to winning ways they put Lydia, Harriet and Jess under immense pressure. Lady Luck also joined Teddington's back four as a Rushmoor shot bounced safely after hitting the crossbar. Kate had a slow start to the match but suddenly she was everywhere, and she was one of the defining players in the later stages. In midfield she was breaking apart Rushmoor's creative play while in attack she started to feed her hungry strikers. She won a corner that Harriet expertly pumped into Rushmoor's six yard box, Emily scored with a delightful headed glance at the foot of post (2-3).

Rushmoor fought back and Teddington responded with a mighty team effort. It was a joy to watch, to see Neave's full bloodied resistance, Catia and Issy tussling with their opposite numbers. Kitty who had recovered from her injury returned to the pitch and was knocked to the floor once again. Within seconds she was back on her feet, staunch and proud. In fact she sealed the win with a superb sweeping move that emanated from Abi's tenacity in midfield. Kitty's goal gave her team a two goal cushion as they entered the last 10 minutes (2-4). Rushmoor fought tooth and nail to preserve their unbeaten record but despite a headed goal from a corner (3-4) they couldn't dampen Teddington's yuletide cheer. Congratulations to the girls on an absolutely wonderful performance. 

Thank you to the referee, to Martin for being our linesman and to Demetrios for being such a brilliant and supportive manager in 2018. Good luck to Rushmoor Saints in 2019.

TAFC Team: Emily, Kitty, Catia, Emma, Kate, Abi, Neave, Harriet, Lydia, Issy, Jess, Sophia, Willow
Goals: Emily (2), Willow (1), Kitty (1)
Player of the match: Abi (Chosen by Alban)
Shots: Rushmoor 33 - 18 TAFC
Shots on target: Rushmoor 24 - 12 TAFC

Teddington Tame the Woking Cougars

Woking Cougars U15 Girls v. TAFC U15 Girls


- 3

This week's match report has a guest author who does not seem that familiar with footballing terms. Sorry about that.

Our regular goalie, Jess, is out this week so the green jersey is up for grabs. After a very unseemly scuffle, almost breaking out into a fist-fight, Kate comes out victorious and is the first half goalie!

So under a drab sky in a freezing corner of Surrey a confident looking Teddington Athletic wander out onto the largest pitch we have ever seen.

Teddington get off to a confident start against the local side and after 2 mins Emma gets her first chance to size up the pitch from the corner flag which looks like it needs a 5 iron to reach the goal from there. Teddington keep the pressure on as Emily shoots but despite slipping it past the goalie, the ball passes right across the face of the goal. Then back at the other end of the pitch Kate makes her first save (more like a casual catch actually) as she denies Woking a rather feeble goalstrike.

Five more minutes pass, with a lot of girls kicking it in both directions. Nothing really comes of it, but there's a lot of encouragement from the parents, and the girls are all having fun, so that's good isn't it?

The ball is back in the Woking half with another great chance by Emily - solid strike but stopped from a bullseye by their wicket keeper. Still on the attack, a lengthy throw by Emma from the outfield finds Abi who is dazzling in midfield avoiding the opposing pack, weaving her way out and passing clear. Another corner now and Harriet selects a one iron and places the ball bang in the middle of the green between the stumps. A goalmouth scramble ensues, but we'll have to wait a little longer to put points on the board. Emma's corner from the other side, places well into the pack, but we're denied again. Teddington still looking strong though with great determination shown all over the court and it's our 4th corner that delivers the goods with Harriet placing accurately into the middle, Emma stopping the ball with her cleats for Emily to bang it into the end zone to get our first point on the board. (1-0).

Minutes later that same pair deliver again as a solid long range pass from her own half, Harriet finds Emily who makes a great break up on the left and slices the ball past the goalie, rebounds of both stumps and ends up in the net (2-0). The crowd go wild (well there are a few mumbled "well-done"'s and some glove-muffled clapping). The touchline committee are definitely impressed with the girls performance at this point with Teddington dominating the offense territory play despite playing uphill.

Half an hour in and the head coach makes a swap - Sophia coming on for Lauren.

Woking start to get a few breaks now, but there is some solid defending by Issy & Megan who tackle well to end the Cougars fun and send the ball back in the right direction. Another attempt by the Cougars gets closer with a shot on goal but that point is denied by a great save from Kate who is pressed into action after, it has to be said, not having much to do for a while.

More Woking breaks follow with some fast attacking players, but Lydia's quarterback speed put pay to several of their yardage gains up the field. Woking win a corner from another advance but it falls short, and after a ruck (or was it a maul) another shot rings out but Kate gets her foot to it stopping a Woking home run.

End of the Half. Teddington still in control at 2-0.

So the team are back for the second half and it's Kitty this time who comes out wearing the green jersey of the wicket keeper. Also, Lauren is back on the pitch with Catia now watching from the dugout. Kate now in a dee-fence position.

The girls continue with some accurate passing from Emily, Abi & Emma although Woking do get a break and put a little pressure on, but Sophia tackles well and clears the ball, nutmegging the ref in the process. (Local Trivia: our ref, who had just finished reffing another match, apparently lives in a hut at the corner of the field and refs all the matches here).

Another Woking break produces a corner for them but Kitty, now apparently allowed to use her hands in the magic green shirt, makes a great catch ending their attacking play.

Some very confident defending easily keeps Woking at bay with Lauren settling into the midfield with some solid tackling and a solid header by Megan bravely stops a very long and high kick from the Woking defence and despite the appreciation of the crowd, she seemed to regret that move afterwards. Woking make a long and rather hopeful shot on this monster pitch, but Kitty is enjoying those gloves and easily gathers up the ball.

After an hour of soccer the team are holding up well, remaining calm when under attack with some great passing in the middle by Lauren, Abi, Harriet and Issy, each person picking their target carefully. Lydia also continuing to outrun the Woking fast forwards and more great passing in defense with careful clearances by Megan & Harriet.

Back at the other end the Woking goalie is kept busy, first when Abi gets locked in tackle with a defender, and still manages to loose off a great shot, then a few minutes later when Harriet gets another shot on target from about 20 yds. The forwards Sofia, Lauren, Emily are also demonstrating their passing play.

Harriet’s throw-in to Kate who makes a great reverse header sends the ball further up the pitch. Woking maintain pressure, possibly helped by having 3 subs to our one, but Teddington are still fighting well with accurate passing and lots of running with Emma breaking down the right hand side drawing their defence who prevent another goal. There's more left in the tank for Teddington though as Emily gets in another shot only for their goalie to get a foot to it and send it wide. The resulting corner sees Emma landing it at the near post (which is nearly a pitch length in other venues) and the defence only clear as far as Abi who gets in a shot but stopped again by their goalie.

Issy and Abi stop another couple of breaks by Woking and with a few minutes to go Teddington win another line-out 20yds out. Emma takes the throw which lands in the box and eventually finds Emily who takes a quick turn slipping it past goalie into far lower corner of their goal.

A confident play from Teddington delivered to goods this week. Well done to all the girls, and to our player of the match Harriet who made a great contribution to this win and seemed to be everywhere on the pitch.

Thanks as ever to the gaffer, Demetrios, and to Richard for being so keen to run the line for some reason.

Back to you in the studio Jeff.

TAFC team: Emily, Sophia, Issy, Lauren, Kate, Emma, Abi, Harriet, Catia, Megan, Kitty, Lydia
Goals - Emily (3)
Player of the Match - Harriet (Chosen by TAFC supporters, and Demetrios)
Shots - Quite a few
Shots on target - A few less, but still enough
Goalmouth scrambles - The usual plethora


Firecracker U15 Girls Back with a Bang!

Cobham Village U15 Girls v. TAFC U15 Girls

- 11

A confident Teddington Athletic U15 Girls got back to winning ways against Cobham Village U15 Girls at the ACS International School in Cobham today (04/11/2018). It was Teddington's best performance this season, reversing a run of below par results with an excellent win. Against Rushmoor Saints in their last game Teddington had just 4 shots on target, today they had 33. Teddington were back with a bang!

Traditionally matches have always been close between Cobham and Teddington, only a single goal separated the sides in their last encounter. Today Teddington were on ruthless form, trying out a new formation to boost their attacking potential. Last week Neave made an excellent debut in left defence, and today she played even better. She was neat with her close control and energised when under threat, often winning the tackles against a spritely opponent. Harriet moved into central defence and she looked like she had always belonged there. Together with Lydia they reduced Cobham to shooting from distance. Harriet deployed her very own 'Big Bertha', a howitzer of a left foot clearance, often taking Teddington from their own box to beyond the halfway line in one giant kick.

Within a minute of kick-off Emily forced a good save from the Cobham goalkeeper, Willow intercepted the rebound, chipped the keeper and Teddington had an early lead (0-1). This set the tone for the first 20 minutes of the match. Emma took her corners with aplomb, often dropping them right into the danger zone. The second goal came from just this route, Catia popping up at the far post to rifle in her shot (0-2). Emma had a fine all-round performance marshalling defence and attack from midfield. She set up Teddington's third goal with a beautifully weighted through ball that Emily finished with great composure. Here was another player who was at her peak, Emily prowled around and terrorised the Cobham defence, breaking through their lines and chalking up 5 goals by the end of the match.

Cobham are a resilient group, full of skilful players at the centre of their team. It wasn't long before they hit back (1-3) and piled on the pressure for the remaining 20 minutes of the first half. As one of their supporters said after the match "I couldn't believe were weren't in the lead". Issy had a tough physical battle at right back, but it wasn't all about her brawn. Her 'Total Football' brain is developing every match, she interspersed intelligent passing balls with full bloodied tackles. Although Cobham had much of the possession and exerted a huge amount of pressure on the visitors they couldn't score again. In fact it was Teddington who hit back with a fourth goal just before halftime. After a series of good saves Jess fired the ball into the centre circle where Willow's dancing feet sashayed the ball onto Kitty. A well deserved goal for the hardworking left winger (1-4).

The TAFC U15 manager Demetrios doesn't get much of a mention in match reports but his rousing halftime talk propelled the girls into the second half at full pelt. Matilda has had a quiet start to the season but today she shone brightly in the Autumn sun. She beat defenders and flashed some brilliant passes to the Teddington strikers. Catia benefitted in the opening minutes, drilling a powerful shot over the Cobham keeper's head (1-5). Again Cobham came back at their opponents with a smart solo effort (2-5). Jess then pulled out a long leg to deny a certain goal, and followed with a punch under pressure. Kate and Emma united in the centre of midfield, the former dropping back into defence when needed. Together they cut off Cobham's last thread of resistance, and turned the game irrevocably in Teddington's favour.

Matilda's second half performance was worthy of adulation on the West End stage if there wasn't already a musical in her name. Her movement and speed broke apart the Cobham defence. A cheeky drag-back gave her an opportunity at goal and she didn't squander the chance (2-6). In the next 15 minutes we witnessed a rampaging Teddington. Four goals from Emily ensued (2-10), nearly all initiated by Emma's creative boots. Emily turned provider too, as she lofted an Issy throw-in into the box Willow was on hand to rocket a shot into the goal (2-11). There could have been more goals at either end, such was the fluidity and excitement of the game. The Cobham goalkeeper stopped several good Teddington shots. In midfield Kate crushed the Cobham attacks with a steely grip, never giving Cobham the chance to fight back.

Thanks to Cobham Village for their welcome and hospitality. Thanks to Demetrios for managing the girls and to linesman Rohan, and of course to the referee. Congratulations to Matilda on being Player-of-the-Match.

TAFC team - Emily, Emma, Harriet, Lydia, Jess, Willow, Neave, Kitty, Kate, Issy, Matilda, Catia
Goals - Emily (5), Willow (2), Catia (2), Matilda (1), Kitty (1)
Player of the Match - Matilda (Chosen by Laura)
Shots - Cobham 22 vs 57 Teddington
Shots on target - Cobham 15 - 33 Teddington

Stats (04/11/2018)

Autumnal Downfall for Gutsy U15 Girls

TAFC U15 Girls v. Rushmoor Saints FC Diamonds

- 4

Much to the delight of Teddington Athletic's players and parents the clocks turned back this morning but it was Rushmoor Saints who stepped forward with a dominant display of physical football and powerful finishing. Teddington Athletic Under 15 Girls battled hard in sticky conditions at their Udney Park home, making Rushmoor work for the win which see them reach the top of the Division 1 table.

However hard Teddington have toiled over the past games they have started at a disadvantage, with numbers below the usual 11 or lacking the substitutes needed to rejuvenate on-field players. Today they started with 10 players but were bolstered by a purposeful Abi who reinforced a stretched Teddington midfield toward the end of the first half. The numerical imbalance of players is also reflected in the scoring chances Teddington are able to fashion against their opponents. Neave had a good game at left back, looking comfortable in her new role. It was a busy morning for Jess in goal and she pulled off a hatful of agile saves. Rushmoor thought they had scored when a deft glance came off one post then the other before dribbling back into Jess' hands. Emily was the lone ranger up front and was relying on both Catia and Kitty to give her opportunities. In the first half Rushmoor were solid at the back and Teddington didn't even have a squeak of a chance from open play. In contrast Rushmoor were peppering Teddington's penalty box with corners, crosses and hot shots from their strikers. Their first goal was a poacher's gift after the ball rebounded from a close range Jess save (0-1). Rushmoor's second goal was a fine solo effort that dipped just under the Teddington bar (0-2).

It is a theme of recent matches that an embattled Teddington have fought back with great resilience and heart. Willow's green boots flashed quicker than a dancing leprechaun as she skilfully beat her opposite number on the right wing. Catia was full of running too, nipping at her opponent's heals but also forging forward to try and get that first shot at the Rushmoor goalie. Lydia and Issy dampened Rushmoor's early bravado with their stout defence. Kate showed her class, turning defence into attack with those ramrod passes that every striker likes to run onto. Rushmoor were too good to stay quiet for long, but Jess' lightning save denied them what seemed a certain three goal lead. Teddington pressed forward. Under pressure Rushmoor handled in the box and Emma stepped up to take the penalty. Megan gave a massive cheer on the touchline as the ball crossed the line. (1-2). Teddington finished the half in the ascendancy.

In a very physical match the strong shoulders of Abi were muscling Teddington into the game. The second half was just as brutal as the first, with Kitty and Lydia thrust to the floor on several occasions. Emma moved into a more creative role and it was her corners that started to cause trouble for the green and whites. But Rushmoor's passing game was also creating space on their right wing and it wasn't long before the bombardment of Teddington's goal started to pay off. First a bullet shot pierced the defences (1-3) and then a cut-back from the touchline set up a tap-in (1-4). Teddington feared the worse when Rushmoor were awarded an indirect free-kick in their penalty box but the defence stood firm.

Once again Teddington came back at Rushmoor. Kitty was tireless on the left, winning corners that Emma swung into the near post. Quick in defence Rushmoor snuffed out several of these corners before one fell nicely to Kitty. Turning between two opponents she jabbed a shot at the Rushmoor keeper who parried the ball into the air. Emily preyed upon the defence, decisively heading beyond the goalie's fingertips and scoring! (2-4). Rushmoor put pressure on Teddington in the final minutes, corners rained down on Kate, Lydia, Issy and Neave but they were resolute. Teddington never gave up, and finished the match with a flourish. Emma and Emily combined well to win a corner. It fell to the ever resourceful Catia who chipped it onto the head of Emily. This time the eagled eyed striker couldn't deliver the killer blow. Rushmoor's autumnal win leaves the top of the Division 1 table very congested, with four teams on 9 points including our very own Teddington Athletic U15 Girls.

The Player-of-the-Match this week was Kitty (chosen by Demetrios). Thank you to Demetrios for managing the girls, to the referee and finally to Darragh for being our limping (but excellent) linesman.

TAFC team - Kitty, Emily, Kate, Catia, Willow, Neave, Lydia, Emma, Issy, Jess, Abi
Goals - Emma (1), Emily (1)
Player of the Match - Kitty (Chosen by Demetrios)
Shots - Teddington 7 - 23 Rushmoor Saints
Shots on target - Teddington 4 - 17 Rushmoor Saints


U15 Girls sunk by Caterham Cannons

Caterham Pumas v. TAFC U15

- 1

Teddington Athletic U15 Girls suffered their first league defeat of the season against a fluent and ruthless Caterham Pumas today. After making the long trip to Caterham two weeks ago in the cup both girls and parents were hopeful of a positive outcome, but Teddington were always on the back foot, and never looked like securing the win. Yet on this wet and gloomy day there were still gilt-edged performances that shone through.

Like a harbinger of doom the first spots of rain hinted at a rough voyage ahead for Teddington. No sooner had they cast adrift it was Teddington who were shipping water, two quick goals plunged into their net and the team were close to capsizing. Teddington are made of stern stuff and they soon plugged their leaking holes. Issy had a fighting game at right back, often repelling wave upon wave of Caterham attacks. As the wind and rain pummelled the pitch the girls grew more resolute. The tough conditions bringing out the best in a Teddington team that resembled a slightly ragtag but battle-hardened pirate crew. Caterham had their silky skills and neat passing game but Teddington had the guts and the heart to fight back. Despite Willow putting in an early tackle the midfield was being overrun. Consistently the Caterham vanguard forced back the Teddington back four of Harriet, Lydia, Kate and Issy. Kitty worked tirelessly, sitting a little deeper than usual, she was a consistent outlet for an attacking force that was being cut off from their defence.

Slowly Teddington pressed Caterham into their own half, Issy winning throw-ins down the right and Emma pushing back Caterham with her excellent long throws. Despite this dominance they couldn't find the space to fire a really clear shot at goal. Teddington had just 5 shots in the first half, two of those on target. They won a series of corners though, taken on the left by Emma and the right by Harriet. These were pumped into the danger zone but no easy chances fell Teddington's way. As the half drew to a close Kate was swamped 3 times by the Caterham attack and 3 times she kept her side from drowning.

The second half heralded a change in fortunes, the Teddington pirates had found the key that unlocked the Caterham treasure chest. Kitty swept down the left wing, feeding Emily who was starved all game of those balls she likes to run onto. This was Emily's bounty, she drove to the touchline and cut back an exquisite cross that Sophia rifled into the Caterham net. Fate though is a cruel mistress. Just as Teddington looked to be back in the game a slippery ball escaped Jess' grasp and fell at the feet of a Caterham striker. Once again Teddington came under intense pressure, Caterham counterattacking with speed, forcing a fine save from Jess under her own crossbar. It wouldn't be proper game if we didn't see Lydia swooping in to deny an opponent their opportunity. Now the tide began to turn a little in Teddington's favour, Neave grabbed a foothold in midfield and alongside Willow they were able to link up with Emily. Unfortunately in the wet conditions it wasn't easy for Emily to go on those jinking solo runs, that so often end in a goal.

It was a frustrating second half with a number of corners for Teddington and the inevitable bagatelle in the Caterham box. As the rain abated Caterham's passing game flowed even stronger, consistently they tested Jess, forcing a number of difficult saves in damp conditions. Twice they were quicker to the rebound and buried these chances without mercy. In the final minutes there were some flashes of class from the TAFC midfield too, clever interlinking play from both Willow and Emma gave chances to Emily in attack. The bleakness of the winter rain didn't dampen the spirits of Sophia and Kitty who kept charging forward to the bitter end. Nor to the resilience of the Teddington defence, who looked exhausted at the final whistle. Harriet was awarded Player of the Match by Richard for her steeliness and defiance under intense Caterham pressure.

A big thank you to Megan for coming along to support the girls. On such a wet and inclement day it was beyond the call of duty but very much appreciated.

Thank you to Demetrios for managing the girls, to the referee, and to Jon and Martin for linesmen duties. Congratulations to Caterham who have deposed Teddington at the top of the Division 1 table.

TAFC team - Emily, Emma, Harriet, Lydia, Jess, Willow, Neave, Kitty, Sophia, Kate, Issy
Goals - Sophia (1).
Player of the Match - Harriet (Chosen by Richard)
Shots - Caterham 32 vs 9 Teddington
Shots on target - Caterham 22 - 5 Teddington

Caterham K.O. Black-eyed Teddington (U15 Girls)

Caterham Pumas FC v. TAFC U15 Girls

- 3

Teddington Athletic Under 15 Girls ended their cup run in fighting style at Caterham Pumas today (30/09/2018). It was a bruising encounter that ended in defeat and an early exit from the cup but featured heroic performances from Teddington's nine players.

Even though this cup tie was dominated by Caterham it was a close and vibrant contest right until the final quarter of the match. Both teams started with 9 players on the pitch, 2 substitutes warmed the Caterham bench and Teddington had their very own cheerleader in the form of a poorly Sophia. The game was wide open with plenty of space for both teams to play expansive football. It was a difficult match for the 81 year old referee to keep up with, as his pacemaker worked overtime the passes flowed to every corner of the pitch. Caterham set the tone of the match with a shot that tested Jess in the first 60 seconds. Not to be outdone Emily intercepted a Caterham goal kick and fired off a shot in reply. Willow was at her creative best, her flashing green boots a blur as she linked defence and attack. Kitty perched on Emily's left shoulder, keeping close to one another they had a handful of chances in the first 15 minutes. Nothing epitomised Teddington's fighting spirit more than Willow who took a brutal butt to the eye after 20 minutes. It took her out of the game until well into the second half when she bravely took to the field again. Caterham took advantage of Teddington's reeling 8 girl team by laying siege to the TAFC goal. Ultimately it was a high ball that breeched the Teddington defences. (1-0)

Neither Emma nor Megan were cowed by the black eye inflicted on fellow player Willow and the team. They repeatedly broke free on the wing, darting dangerous balls across the Caterham penalty box. Both Harriet and Lydia were kept busy in defence, they never had a moments rest as Caterham slipped passes into the space between keeper and the back three. Again and again they were called upon to rescue Teddington, swooping in at the last moment. Caterham were skilful, and drew some smart diving saves from Jess. As the half neared its end Emma won the ball near the centre circle and sent Kitty loose on the left. Head down she gouged through Caterham like a raging bull. With the Caterham defence split in two Kitty found Emily who finished smartly. GOAL! (1-1).

Teddington looked tired in the first 10 minutes of the second half and their 8 players were starting to feel the pace. A speculative shot found its way past Jess (2-1). Moments later she responded with a brave double save that knocked a Caterham attacker from her feet. Neave was gritty in defence, nipping at ankles and winning a series of close combat skirmishes against her opposite number. It was a busy half for Harriet, she switched last gasp defence to attack, often giving Emily the opportunity to batter the enemies lines. Caterham started to stretch away, outnumbering Teddington with slick counterattacking moves. In quick succession Caterham scored four more times as their attackers showed great composure in front of the Teddington goal (6-1). Emma had another excellent half, as heads started to dip she tapped her deepest reserves of strength and stamina. One of her special long throws threaded its way through the Caterham box and burst through the keepers hands GOAL! (6-2). This galvanised Teddington and once again they took the fight to Caterham. With seconds left on the clock Emily's tenacity gave Kitty the chance to skin the last defender. Her cross was perfect for Megan who rocketed the ball into the roof of the net. GOAL! (6-3).

As the whistle blew Teddington sunk to their knees in exhaustion, they couldn't have given more. It was a deserved win for Caterham Pumas who were just that little bit more fluent and they progress onto the next round of the cup. Congratulations to Lydia who was awarded Player of the Match by Lori. Time after time she saved Teddington with her speed. Thank you to Demetrios for managing the girls, to Martin and Jon for running the line, and all the parents who negotiated the long journey to Caterham and back.

TAFC team - Emily, Emma, Megan, Harriet, Lydia, Jess, Willow, Neave, Kitty.
Goals - Emily (1), Emma (1), Megan (1).
Player of the Match - Lydia (Chosen by Lori)
Shots - Caterham 32 vs 17 Teddington
Shots on target - Caterham 20 - 9 Teddington

U15 Girls Edge Cobham Clash

TAFC U15 Girls v. Cobham Village U15 Girls

- 1

Last season the Teddington Athletic Under 15 Girls played two close matches against Cobham Village Girls. Each time Teddington stuck to their task and came away winners. Today was true to form and Teddington edged this early season encounter once again.

The size of the pitch has increased for the Under 15 girls and this match showed that there is more space and time for the girls to play their football. In the first half Cobham were dominant in the middle, with two of their most agile and statuesque players dictating the pace of the game. Despite this advantage they couldn't truly break the defensive line of Harriet (left), Lydia (centre), Emma (centre) and Megan (right). Cobham found it hard to create those clear chances and were reduced to 7 shots, 3 of which were on target. Teddington in contrast spent the first 15 minutes engineering a host of golden opportunities that they couldn't quite convert into a goal. They were also kept at bay by some inspired goalkeeping by the Cobham number 1. Kitty and Emily tested the keeper early on before a Sophia/Lauren combo drew a brave series of saves. A last ditch tackle denied Emily in the ensuing melee, and the offside flag stopped Neave in full flow. The Cobham midfielders varied their attack, spreading the ball wide to their wingers. These crosses pinged dangerously across the TAFC penalty box. The larger pitch is really bringing out the best in Lauren, and with the extra space she was linking well with Emily, who took the opportunity to test the keeper as often as possible.

As the half pushed beyond the midway point Kitty and Kate cracked the midfield conundrum. Kate started to win those 50/50 contests and Kitty profited with some searching forward runs alongside Sophia. Kitty, last week's Player of the Match had another excellent game. Teddington hadn't taken the chances they had created and this bolstered Cobham's resolve. To describe it as a stalemate would be to undersell the fiery battle that was flaring up in the middle of the pitch. Catia lit the blue touch paper with her sparky tackling while Matilda's skillful close control gave those ahead of her chances to push forward. With half time on the Udney Park horizon Emily produced one of those ranging attacks that took her half the length of the field. The defenders desperately shepherded  her to the touchline but Emily tucked a skimming shot under the Cobham keeper from an acute angle. GOAL 1-0.

The second half started in the same vein with Emily immediately testing the Cobham Goalkeeper. Emma had moved into midfield and around her Catia and Willow hunted tirelessly. They worked as a pack, Emma was the lioness, she was sleek and stylish but with a ferocious bite when needed. Megan stalked the right wing and there were opportunities for Kitty, Catia and Willow who prowled dangerously around the Cobham box. It wasn't long before Emily was at it again, through strength and determination she fashioned another excellent solo GOAL! 2-0. Cobham knew they were in a scrap and as Teddington legs tired they stretched the defence before them with their good passing football. Jess and Megan combined to stop a marauding Cobham attack, and Harriet's big boot was called into action to clear the lines (she even managed to kick the ball out of the ground). Lydia was as dependable as ever and extinguished a clear Cobham chance with a speedy tackle. Cobham started to take long range shots but Jess dived left and right, catching high balls and blocking daisy cutters alike. Eventually a Cobham shot just dipped over Jess, her fingertips unable to deflect the ball, GOAL 2-1.

The final 10 minutes were a tense affair. Cobham had a series of very well directed corners that spread panic along the touchline. Kate was unflappable during this tense time, invariably she got her boot in, redirecting Cobham shots or unsettling their rejuvenated strikers (Jon awarded her the TAFC Player of the Match). With Harriet's big kicks Teddington were able to switch defence to attack in the blink of an eye. Both Kitty and Emily profited, and it was the former who hit the bar in the last minutes. There was time for one last chance from Cobham, a fierce shot bouncing on the dusty ground in front of Jess. She was not to be beaten and Teddington were not to be denied an excellent win against a strong Cobham side.

Thank you to Demetrios for managing the side, and to Chris for linesman duties. Thanks to the referee for a fair and enjoyable game. Good luck to Cobham in the season ahead.

TAFC team - Sophia, Emily, Lauren, Emma, Megan, Harriet, Kate, Lydia, Jess, Willow, Neave, Kitty, Catia, Matilda
Goals - Emily (2)
Player of the Match - Kate (Chosen by Jon)
Shots - Teddington 27 vs 21 Cobham
Shots on target - Teddington 13 - 13 Cobham

U15 Girls Blast 21 Goal Salute

Rushmoor Community FC U15 v. TAFC U15


- 21

Teddington Athletic U15 Girls kicked off their Division 1 (SCWG League) campaign today (09/09/2018) at newly formed Rushmoor Community FC. After a summer of good living and lazy day holidays the TAFC girls were expecting a struggle as they dusted off the cobwebs and put their fitness to the test. Teddington had nothing to fear as they started where they left from last season with smart dynamic football. They were too much for Rushmoor and finished the game with 21 goals from 10 different scorers.

The early exchanges of the match were hotly contested but it soon became clear that much of the match was going to be played in Rushmoor's half of the pitch. With this in mind defenders and midfielders were given licence to roam free, everyone playing in different positions except Jess who guarded her goal (only touching the ball once). Willow felt this was a day for flamboyance and peppered the Rushmoor goal in the early minutes but it was Emily's speculative shot that started a flurry of goals (0-1). Lauren had a scintillating match, marauding down the left and she soon found Emma hunting in the middle. Such a sweet connection inevitably ended in a GOAL (0-2). It was a day when Kitty's tenacity was rewarded with both goals for her but opportunities for her teammates too. She set up Willow who buried a short range chance (0-3). Megan was clever with her interceptions, and alongside Emma they gobbled up the bouncing balls in midfield. Megan's poaching instincts paid off as she pinged the ball off the post and into the net (0-4). Once Sophia gets up a head of steam nothing derails her, she continually powered into the Rushmoor box, an early chance clearing the keeper, goal (0-5). After some smart link up play with Neave the Sophia locomotive was blowing through the Rushmoor defence again (0-6).

Emma was bossing the midfield as Rushmoor tried to reverse the run of play and it was her skill that gave Megan her second goal, a delightful chip that just cleared the keeper (0-7). Teddington's eighth goal was a historic one, a first for Neave in a Teddington Athletic shirt. It was a classic opportunist's chance, won through quick thinking and a deft touch (8-0). Kitty was finding plenty of space in front of Rushmoor's goal, a cheeky back heel didn't quite break her drought but a bullet straight shot dipped under the keeper's hand and soon it was raining goals for her (0-9). The big kicking Harriet was always a danger and she scored toward the end of the half, straight from a corner (0-10). Amongst all this chaos Emily bagged another goal and Teddington reached halftime with an Eleven goal lead.

The second half was just as frenetic and the goals kept coming despite Rushmoor's valiant resistance. They will get stronger throughout the season, and these early setbacks will be a distant memory. With a first goal in the bag Neave was shooting like a trigger happy gunslinger. Not to be outdone Lydia started to put her considerable pace to good use and hit the post with a stinging shot. This half belonged to Kitty and nearly everything she touched turned to gold, she scored a second goal (0-12) and then Harriet set her up for a third (0-13). Lydia also scored her first ever goal for Teddington Athletic when she nutmegged the keeper (0-14). Lauren was buzzing and caught the eye with her unselfish attitude, she passed to Harriet whose whipping shot bobbled over the goalkeeper's head (0-15). Lauren got a deserved goal with a long range potshot (0-16). A long throw ended with Willow slotting in a second (0-17) and she was soon to bag a hattrick as she tidied up a shot parried by the opposition's keeper (0-18). On her birthday Emily was hunting her very own hattrick, and it wasn't long before she achieved it, curling in a goal directly from a corner kick (0-19).

Throughout the match TAFC manager Demetrios had not only been shuffling the team but also reducing the number of players on the pitch. By the end there were 7 girls playing for Teddington. This left a creative space for both Issy and Kate to express themselves in. Kitty benefited from their passing flair and her Midas touch didn't desert her when she netted her fourth goal (0-20). The ever resourceful Megan powered down the wing, and with a pinpoint cross found an express Sophia who cracked her very own hattrick (0-21). It was a 21 gun salute that heralds the start of a long campaign, with muddy battles and more goals of glory to come.

Thank you to Demetrios for managing the side, and Keith running the line. Thanks to the referee for a fair and enjoyable game. Good luck to Rushmoor Community FC in their new venture. The TAFC Player of the Match was Kitty, chosen by Nikki.

TAFC team - Sophia, Emily, Lauren, Emma, Megan, Harriet, Kate, Lydia, Issy, Jess, Willow, Neave, Kitty
Goals - Lauren (1), Emily (3), Harriet (2), Willow (3), Kitty (4), Lydia (1), Sofia (3), Megan (2), Emma (1), Neave (1)
Player of the Match - Kitty (Chosen by Nikki)
Shots - Rushmoor 0 vs 49 Teddington
Shots on target - Rushmoor 0 - 30 Richmond

U14 Girls Tame Tabletoppers in Season Finale

Teddington Athletic U14 Girls v. Richmond Park FC

- 3

Teddington Athletic U14 Girls brought their 2017/2018 league campaign to a conclusion today against local rivals Richmond Park FC. Despite only 1.5km separating their two grounds it wasn't expected to be a close game in terms of goals. Richmond have dominated the Division 1 standings, winning every game in the league during their 15 game run. Despite the odds being stacked against them Teddington produced a performance full of desire and intent. A 3-3 draw was a fitting achievement for Teddington, who have improved throughout the season and deserved to bow out on a high.

Teddington Athletic bucked recent trends by pressing forward from the first blow of the whistle. Their positivity gave the front two chances immediately. Sophia scythed into the Richmond box on one of her legendary runs while Emily was just as belligerent, firing off a warning shot across the Richmond bows. Their opponents were no pushovers, reminding Teddington with a series of chances that rattled posts and tested an ever vigilant Jess in goal. Teddington's throw-ins were  a surprisingly effective weapon, and both Harriet and Emma were the deadliest exponents. Harriet was everywhere in the first half, not only did she loosen off a shot but she put in a number of crunching tackles, keeping the Richmond right side under wraps. Teddington's midfield had an inspirational game, supporting one another in both attack and defence. Megan and Emma were ferocious in the middle, it was the former who epitomised the Teddington ethos, pushing forward purposefully whenever the team got the chance.

Creatively Teddington were at their best. Issy and Matilda played some neat football on the right resulting in a shot from Emily. Lauren did the same on the left, switching from defence to attack when required. Despite Teddington's possession it was Richmond who scored first. GOAL! 0-1. The fresh legs of Kitty and Willow immediately made a difference, combining in a flowing move that gave Emily the chance to level the score. GOAL! 1-1. Suddenly Willow was everywhere, both brain and brawn making her a formidable opponent. Kate shepherded Teddington toward the break, a rock in central defence.

The second half exploded into action within minutes of the restart. A flying tackle by Megan put Teddington on the front foot. Clever interplays between Neave and Catia created an opportunity for Emily. Showing her strength she shrugged off two Richmond defenders before burying her shot in the net. GOAL 2-1. Emma was a lynchpin in centre midfield, her throw-ins a constant threat. Willow took advantage of one when she cracked a sweet volley beyond the Richmond keepers' reach. GOAL. 3-1. You don't get to the top of the league with a 100% win ratio without being resilient and Richmond poured forward, stung into action. Even the most ardent Teddington supporter could appreciate Richmond's play during this period. Two goals in quick succession levelled the score at 3-3!

At the start of the season Teddington might well have been overwhelmed at this point but not now. The last 15 minutes of the match was a nail biting affair with high emotions on the touchline as well as the pitch. Lydia and Kate showed why they are so valued at TAFC. Despite wave upon wave of attacks besieging the Teddington defence they held firm. Often they were flung to the ground but Richmond couldn't break their spirit. In the dying minutes both teams had chances to win the game. Jess bravely ending in a tangle with Lydia but came up with the ball in hand. It wasn't all backs to the wall. Kitty's tireless forward forays gave Teddington an invaluable release from the constant bruising attacks of Richmond. Both her and Catia worked hard to give Teddington the chance of a winning goal but fairy tale endings will have to wait for another season. The final lines of this story belong to the Teddington Athletic U14 Girls. A team to be proud of.

Thank you to Demetrios and Keith for managing the side. To the referee and linesmen (especially Jon). Good luck to Richmond Park in their final two games. Congratulations to Harriet on being our Player of the Match.

TAFC team - Sophia, Emily, Lauren, Emma, Megan, Matilda, Harriet, Kate, Lydia, Issy, Jess, Willow, Neave, Kitty, Catia
Goals - Emily (2), Willow (1)
Player of the Match - Harriet (Chosen by Tracey)
Shots - Teddington 13 - 22 Richmond
Shots on target - Teddington 8 - 15 Richmond

Walton Casuals too smart for U14 Girls

Teddington Athletic U14 Girls v. Walton Casuals Juniors FC Jewels

- 4

It was a game of two halves as Teddington Athletic U14 Girls took on Walton Casuals at Broom Road today (11/03/2018). Despite some strong and forthright play by the U14 girls it was Walton who ran out the victors after a good second half performance sealed the win. With TAFC on a superb run of recent form hopes were high and the mood buoyant, but Walton played the better football on the day and deserved the win.

Traditionally Teddington soak up the pressure in the first 10 minutes and this game was no exception. The Fantastic Four at the back immediately flexed their superhero muscles and saved the day on more than one occasion. Lucy had a very busy afternoon, and she was a standout performer in central defence. Issy and Lydia too were kept busy, and Walton attacked with numbers whenever they got the chance. The waspish Matilda once again caught the eye with some beautiful close control, she buzzed around her opponents, looking to sting them with her neat passes. Teddington broke the deadlock from the penalty spot when a Walton defender handled in the box. Emma slotting the spot kick past the keeper with aplomb. GOAL 1-0.

Teddington sniffed an opportunity as the Walton keeper was carried off after twisting her ankle. Megan was a whirl of creativity on the right, often providing the link between the rest of the team and Emily, who marauded up front. First Harriet took a shot and then Matilda beat two players before unleashing one of her stingers toward the goal. Walton pushed back though. Jess produced a fingertip save but it wasn't enough. A smart swooping move by Walton finished in a GOAL. 1-1. The teams didn't remain level for long as Lauren started to find her feet on the left, and it was from this side that Emily drilled a ball across the Walton box. Megan popped up with a quick fire finish that the keeper had no chance of stopping. GOAL 2-1.

Emma was an essential player alongside Kate in the centre of midfield, and these two combined brilliantly to quieten the opposition during this period. With half time on the horizon both Abi and Sophia came into the fray. Sophia as always full of running and full of heart, while Abi combined with Issy and Matilda on the right in a creative triangle. Unfortunately a mix up in the Teddington box gave Walton a clear chance and they didn't miss the opportunity. GOAL 2-2.

The second half wasn't the finest of Teddington Athletic's season but that wasn't due to a lack of effort or desire. Catia had an excellent game at left back, on more than one occasion her big clearances not only stopped Walton in their tracks but also turned defence into attack. Harriet revealed her versatility as she started the half in midfield and eventually finished it as a striker. For 20 minutes or more it was a stalemate, with crunching tackles and a seesawing midfield duel. Kate was strong and totemic. Both her and Abi clashed regularly with their opposite numbers. As the game neared its end Walton managed to move the ball that bit quicker, and a flowing attack ended in a GOAL. 2-3.

As Teddington pushed forward for the equaliser Walton shoved back just as hard. Jess pulled out a full length dive to push a whipping shot to safety. Lydia, Lucy, Emma and Catia broadened their shoulders in defence but luck played a cruel hand. Sometimes it isn't your day and an unfortunate series of ricochets fell invitingly at the feet of the Walton striker GOAL 2-4. Teddington never gave up, fighting to the end. Emma with her long throws causing trouble. Emily and Harriet combining in a last ditch attempt for that elusive goal. It just wasn't meant to be.

Well done to Walton on a good win. A fighting performance from the TAFC girls. Congratulations to Kate on being our Player of the Match. Thank you to Demetrios for managing, and to the referee and the linesmen. Good luck girls with your final match of the season.

TAFC team - Emily, Lauren, Kate, Lydia, Megan, Jess, Abi, Sophia, Catia, Lucy, Harriet, Matilda, Emma, Issy.
Goals - Emma (1), Megan (1)
Player of the Match (chosen by Jon) - Kate
Shots: Teddington 11 - 19 Walton
Shots on target:  Teddington 7 - 12 Walton