Tough lesson for the Raptors

Teddington Raptors U10 v. Oxshott Royals

0 - 9

Udney Park

There was no shame in losing to this quality Oxshott team who are well established in league three. The Raptors learnt a tough lesson today about the value of ‘pressing’ and closing the opposition down, as Oxshott refused to let us play our normal passing game.

The Raptors started very well, stringing together a few passes and the first ten minutes of the game appeared to be an even contest. A few momentary lapses of concentration in defence led to two goals in quick succession and we never recovered from this. The opposition relentlessly closed us down and pressed high up the pitch for the remainder of the game.

Perhaps our best attacking performance came from Daniel Jolly who used his pace to penetrate deep into the opposition half into dangerous areas on several occasions.

The Raptors never gave up and Cormac Sims ran his socks off and Billy Hall worked hard down the left side as a second half sub, forcing a number of throw-ins awarded to the raptors.

Man of the match was awarded to Finlay Simms for a solid performance in defensive midfield and goaly in the second half.

Take aways from the game today: release the ball earlier and press the opposition team when they have possession.

The next game can’t come quick enough!


Promising start for Raptors

Teddington Raptors U10 v. Merstham Youth

2 - 4

Teddington U10 Raptors v Merstham Youth
Udney Park

Although the result did not go our way this was a really great team effort against allegedly one of the strongest teams in division three.

The boys adapted well to a new ‘Christmas tree’ formation, which is a slightly more defensive approach to what the boys are used to. The idea was to soak up pressure and then use the pace of Lennon Chamlers and Jarvis Moore to hit the opposition of the break.

The first goal of the game came from Jarvis Moore who showed great combatative spirit and upper body strength to withstand a strong shoulder challenge from the opposition defender, before unleashing a strong right footed shot into the bottom left hand corner.

Merstham equalised a few minutes later before Lennon Chalmers put the Raptors 2-1 up, using his pace to beat a couple of defenders and finishing at close range. Lennon terrorised the oppo defence all game and was unlucky not to have scored a few more!

The Raptors continued to play well in the second half and Finlay Simms made a couple of good saves in goal.

In the end a lack of subs began to tell and tired legs allowed Merstham to creep back into the game which ended up as a 4-2 loss.

Man of the match was awarded to Max Rankin for an all round great display in defence. Perhaps his finest moment was an incredible tackle after tracking back from the halfway line to deny a Merstham counter attack in the first half.

Apologies to anybody who has not had a mention as everyone had a game today.

Not the right result but a great game and the boys enjoyed themselves.

Tough lesson for the Raptors at Leatherhead

Teddington Raptors U9 v Leatherhead U9
Leatherhead 05/05/2018

A glorious May morning on a state of the art 3-G pitch… but the Raptors just couldn’t get started today. Fielding a 7 man squad against a team that beat us 7-3 earlier in the season was always going to be tough.

Although we passed the ball well at times we gave it away too often and the final ball in the opposition half wasn’t up to our usual high standards. In the end not having any subs on a large pitch proved telling and there were several tired raptor legs towards the closing moments of the game.

Thankfully in football there are always great moments, even in defeat. Jarvis Moore used the ball to great effect in the first half holding up the ball and bringing his team mates into play.

Tom Mullins demonstrated again what a promising young playmaker he is when he split the Leatherhead defence with an audacious pass with the outside of his right boot, picking out the run of Max Ranking which left coaches and parents drooling.

Lennon Chamlers came close to scoring a couple of times after some determined dribbles on the right side of midfield.

Finlay Simms was awarded the man of the match for a solid first half in defence and then an impressive debut in goal that kept the scoreline below double figures.

The next game can’t come quick enough!

Raptors go down to Leopards in tough test


The Raptors four game unbeaten run came to an end today against the Leopards, who are surely the strongest team we have faced in the league and unfortunately had not changed their spots since we last met.

The better team won today but the 6-1 scoreline was perhaps unfair, as the Raptors were very much in the contest right up to the last 12 mins when the game slipped out of reach.

The first ten minutes saw the Raptors pinned into the their own box, soaking up wave after wave of attack before finally conceding two goals in quick succession.

We seemed to settle down after 15 mins, breaking into the Leopards half and won a couple of corners. We went into the half time break feeling optimistic we could turn things around.

The Raptors started the second half well, looking very solid and it looked like we may not concede again until disaster struck… the ref failed to spot an injured Raptors defender on the ground, allowing play to continue and Leopards capitalised on the hole in defence.

This was the turning point and the Leopards didn’t look back, scoring another 3 goals.

As always the Raptors had some great moments and it was pleasing to see we never gave up. Daniel Jolly scored the consolation goal when he used his pace to break free of the Leopards defence and beat the goaly with a firm low right foot shot.

The Raptors almost scored a second soon after when Lennon Chalmers curling right foot shot was denied by the post.

Hayden Elliot almost came close too when he picked the ball up deep in his own half and carried the ball the whole length of the pitch with real purpose, before unleashing a low right drive that went just wide of the post.

Cormac Sims was awarded man of the match for another all round great performance in defence, midfield and goal.

Congratulations to the Leopards who were outstanding today and are currently setting the standards for the U9’s age group. A tough test for the Raptors but lots of ‘takeaways’ to help with our on going development.

Raptors stage dramatic comeback in 4-4 thriller

COULDSON 14/04/2018

What a game and what a comeback! Although we played well in the first half we went into the break 4-1 down and this looked too great a mountain to climb…Coulsdon were one of the better teams we have played; well organised, physical and dangerous from set pieces which made the end result even more satisfying!

Despite the 4-1 score line at the break we played some great pass-and-move football. Lennon Chamlers bundled the goal over the line after a goal mouth scramble to make it 1-1 before the Raptors conceeded three goals in quick succession.

The managers message at half time was to continue with our passing game and enjoy ourselves.

Cormac Sims had a commanding performance in centre midfield in the second half juggling roles between playmaker and enforcer.

Billy Hall was again in the right place at the right time to score in the six yard box to make it 2-4 soon after the break and the comeback was on!

Daniel Jolly kept us in the game with a fine save in the second half which was applauded by the away and home fans.

Man of the match was awarded to Zac Lewis for his immaculate performance on the left wing in the second half. Zac ran at players, picked out the right pass at the right time and tracked back when the opposition had the ball. His efforts were rewarded with a very composed finish after a neat one-two with a team mate to make it 3-4.

The equaliser was a great example of the benefits of ‘pressing’ when three raptors (Cormac, Zac and Lenny) descended on a Coulsdon defender like a pack of hungry piranhas forcing an error resulting in a rebound that some how ended up in the back of the Couldson net.

A remarkable comeback and the coaches and parents were very proud of the raptors today!

Raptors roar in ice age part 2

U9 Raptors v. Worcester Park

5 - 2

The omens were in our favour when Cormac Sims arrived with a shamrock pinned to his chest in honour of St Patrick and the luck of the Irish was with the raptors today!

Tom Mullins shone up front with several thoughtful and perfectly weighted passes to his team mates.

This was a great team performance against a team who beat us 3-2 just a few weeks ago.

Max Rankin was awarded man of the match for a very brave performance in arctic conditions. Despite having ice blocks for hands and feet, Max never gave in and had a great all round game today.

The Raptors first two goals came from Daniel Jolly who made a great impact in the first half on the right hand side with an energetic display.

Jarvis Moore made it 3-1  to the Raptors soon after the break, when he cut inside from the left hand side with a composed right foot finish.

The opposition soon scored after the replay to make it 3-2.  For several minutes it looked like they might equalise as their powerful number 9 terrorised the Raptors defence, forcing several fine saves from Cormac Sims.

Tom Mullins topped off his fine performance with a typically accurate shot into the bottom left hand corner in the second half and this goal sealed the win for the raptors.

The Raptors weren’t finished though and the final goal came from Lennon Chamlers. Lennon was virtually rugby tackled by the big oppo number 5 but somehow managed to stay on his feet and slot home.

Go raptors!

Raptors return from Ice Age with fine display against AFC Lanes

AFC Lanes v. TAFC U9s Raptors

3 - 3

Wallington Sports Club
Score 3-3

After a three week break thanks to the icy weather conditions, there was a danger the Raptors would look rusty, but the Boys showed they had completely thawed out with an enthusiastic display of neat passing and committed tackling.

Aaron Lear was awarded the man of match for a decisive performance in defence. Aaron looked very sharp and was always first to the ball in the fifty fifties.

The Raptors first two goals came from Billy Hall in the first half. Billy’s first was a predatory right foot finish in the six yard box.

The second goal came after some neat passing in the middle of the pitch between Max Rankin and Lennon Chalmers. Lennon released Billy into the penalty box who unleashed a firm left foot shot across the the face of goal into the bottom right corner.

The beginning of the second half saw the Raptors penned into their own half before conceding a goal from a low hit drive

The Raptors soon took the lead through Jarvis Moore, who scored after a free run at goal beating the goaly at the near post with a firm low shot.

The Raptors conceded a third shortly afterwards against the run of play to make it 3-3. The remaining five minutes saw the Raptors peppering the opposition goal with shots and we had three corners in quick succession. Sadly we could not make the pressure count and the game ended in draw. Lots of positives to take away from the game and the boys looked like they enjoyed themselves.

Raptors U9’s record first win of 2018

TAFC Raptors U9's v. Reigate U9's

6 - 2


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

TAFC Raptors U9s v. Worcester Park U9s

2 - 3


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


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!


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

Sent from my iPhone