Terrific team display
By Simon King
Ruthless finishing and defending was the difference
Ruthless finishing and defending was the difference between two very good footballing sides. We clearly enjoy playing Gloucester as last time out we won the game within 20 minutes with devastating attacks. But his time we had to be a bit more patient as our opponents have become a much better side BUT clearly we have also.
From the off we looked composed with Joe happy to play to Tom Hunt and Liam Hurle as we tried to play through the thirds. It took only 5 minutes to take the lead when Will Bishop pressed the ball high up the field meaning a ball fell to Callum Swain
. Short of a goal in recent weeks (you wouldn't have known) as he rifled the ball in off the crossbar. We looked a threat down the flanks with Charlie Morris overlapping and delivering a number of dangerous crosses. James Welch
and Tom Trevis offering great support and Tom saw a fine header unluckily hit the bar.
The next 20 saw Gloucester put a higher press on as they showed excellent energy and passed the ball well. We got a 2nd on a quick counter (James Fletcher
bursting through) to be denied by the GK. Tremendous anticipation and quick thinking saw Kyle Peters
calmly cut in and finish the rebound. They had a 10 minute spell where we really had to defend well. No more evident than a fantastic goal denying block by Will Bishop and a couple of vital interceptions from Tom Hunt. Against the run of play we got a break away goal. A super ball wide from Jimmy to Lewis saw him support his own pass, get it back and whip a low dangerous cross that was turned into his own net. 3-0 half time.
The next quarter saw Gloucester enjoy their best spell as they really worked hard to close down and played with a very high line. Credit to them as they went a further goal behind two minutes into the quarter. Good work on the left saw Oli Hartland win us a corner. A James Welch
delivery was met with a towering Tom Hunt header which boomed against the underneath of the cross bar. Gloucester moved the ball well with the midfield having a great tussle. Hayden Reeves came to the rescue on two or three occasions as they forces play down our right side. However for all their possession Joe only made one save and the rest of the time swept up well.
We spoke about the need to look forward earlier when dealing with such a high press and to use the pace of Lewis in particular. The final quarter saw us run away with the game as Lewis supplied two assists both for James Fletcher
who moved into double figures for the season. Fully deserved his goals for his work rate and link up play. Lewis Allen also opened his account for us with a well taken finish from a Tom Hunt ball over the top. The Gloucester keeper was really busy as he denied Lewis twice more and made a terrific double save from Callum Swain
Today shows just how far we have come. A very good side lost 7-0 today due to your ability to manage different scenarios and carry out game plans. It was a joy to watch you play out from the back on a tight pitch. You mixed up the game when needed and also showed the importance of concentration and not letting in goals when the opposition are having their spell.
Today we have given the entire team MOM as everyone contributed so positively. Great to see the two strikers back finding the net, plus wide players scoring and creating and Tom scoring off a set piece. Nice to see players with a smile and playing with confidence.
See you at training Wednesday - those away, easy on the eggs please!!!