Opening day defeat
By Simon King
A welcome to JPL season 2016/17
A welcome to JPL season 2016/17 for the boys as a physically dominant QPR won 4-0 with only five shots in the game. A score line that flattered our opponents but is a reminder of the concentration and good decision making required needed at this level. The first 20 minutes was fairly even with the glassboys getting into good wide areas and Corey and Mitch seeing plenty of ball. However it was scrappy and too direct with the boys looking slightly overwhelmed and paying too much respect to the opponents giving them far too much space in midfield areas. A cheap free kick cost us a goal in this period and left us 1-0 down. We spoke about competing physically for the next period and to show more composure. A definite improvement was seen as we tried to play out against a high press with Dan, and Tom trying to receive from Joe and Jimmy getting on the ball. The half finished 1-0.
Changes made with the boys confident they were right in the match and we started on the front foot having our best spell as a midfield of Jimmy, Dan and Oli started to move the ball well and Amari and Corey both got forward. The final pass (decisions and execution) was letting us down as Fletch fed off scraps and was tightly marked. We the got hit on the counter attack as we backed off and made it too easy for a strike from the edge of the box that Oli had little chance to get to. 2-0 down after 60 minutes but still in the game. The fourth quarter started like the third with us probing and in spells moving the ball well but we couldn't find any openings and in truth created little as our opponents continued to show their athletic prowess. We then got hit with two soft goals. A free kick that freakishly went in directly as Joe slipped (only mistake he made all day). The fourth was from a throw in that wasn't dealt with by two players allowing an easy finish. We rallied with Swainy almost on the end of a nice move but again was hit hard in the tackle.
Positives - we continued to try and play until the end and we limited them to 5 chances all game
Areas to work on - dealing with the ball under physical pressure and decision making in the final third