VWFC vs Ripley Village
22/10/2016 Virginia Water 1 - 0 Ripley Village
Surrey Elite League
Report by Ceri Jones
Virginia Water fought hard to record their 7th straight win, against a powerful and equally determined Ripley Village side.
This top of the table clash proved to be just that, with both sides cancelling each other out well, with the visitors shading the first half, but Waters much the better in the second half, and on balance deserving of a win in this tough contest.
Waters were second best in the first twenty minutes, with their defence tested a number of times, but held firm throughout.
Another clean sheet for the factory (the sixth in ten games) was hard graft, with centre halves of Marc Lansdowne and, in particular, Finn Evered, terrific throughout, ably supported by the marauding full backs Josh Hill and Max Samyint.
When Matt Jones in goal was tested, he always showed good hands under intense pressure on occasions.
Waters’ first great chance in the first half fell to Adam McNamara, after a slick passing move involving many a player, but he dragged his shot slightly wide. A few other shots followed, with Martin Peters, Steve Williams (MoM), Adam Mill, Louis Sanders and Dan Whatford all having attempts on goal.
To reach the break at 0-0 was what the home side needed - to regroup and come out stronger in the second half, when Waters felt their passing and fitness would eventually tell.
Thankfully it did, but only just!
Soon after the break, a long throw from Evered was nodded on by Peters to McNamara, who contested with the keeper, only for the latter to parry into the path of Peters following up to volley in.
Waters had a few more chances to add to this, with further efforts by Williams, Tom Curran, Samyint, Jake Baker and McNamara, but they could not add to the lead.
At the other end, Ripley pushed for the equaliser, but with the back five in control, it was Waters who looked the more likely scorers.
Manager Ceri Jones was delighted again with the impact off the bench, with Baker, Curran and Liam Hill all playing their part.
Impressively, Waters coped well for the final 15 minutes with 10 men, when Curran was lost to injury.
A man of the match performance by Williams in centre midfield was crucial - he battled strongly and won his duel with his opposite number, both in his defensive and attacking work.
There are now two teams equal at the top (VWFC and Godalming), with Waters’ goal difference the stronger – and now a 4 point gap to third place. A top effort, if not a classic, with two top sides cancelling each other out for much of the game.
Well done lads!
MOM: Steve Williams