VWFC vs Old Bradwell United Dev
08/09/2018 Virginia Water Dev 8-1 Old Bradwell United Dev
Hellenic Division Two East
Report by Pete Stevens
Goalkeeper Dan Roach
Virginia Water’s Development team were up against Old Bradwell United Development, a team from Milton Keynes and new to the Hellenic League this season. Waters fielded a strong line-up, with a handful of returning first team players, and the home side seemed to have a good feel about it - from the warm up there was a real determination amongst the players to get a first win of the season that was really needed.
The match started very brightly with everyone getting good early touches on the ball and the focus appeared to be to get the ball to feet in good areas of the pitch and keeping good early possession. It all kept Bradwell on the back foot and it was only a matter of time until Waters would score their first goal. And when it came, it was with a touch of class from young Harry Brooks - a former youth team player at the club. He cut inside from the left and delivered a shot that went into the bottom right corner of the goal.
The all-important first goal gave the home team real confidence and they started to play the ball around, starting attack after attack from the back. Goalkeeper Dan Roach was providing good distribution to the defence, which gave the team good width throughout the first half. The midfield was strong with Liam Hill and Joe McBride dominating and dictating the play; McBride’s determination and tackling and Hill’s passing accuracy was a great combination, as you would expect from the senior players.
The second goal came from Scott Ancell, with a side foot finish after more good build up play, who proved to be a very effective target man. The third goal was another superb left foot shot from McBride who added strength with every attack and linking well with Ben Jones in the advanced midfield role. Waters were enjoying this match with it all flowing superbly for them, and the fourth goal came from Ancell with another side foot finish. Another young player, Robbie Greenwood, recently acquired from Ascot United, on the right hand wing was proving to be an asset to the team. After another good build up from the back, he provided a deep cross-cum-shot that looped over the goalkeeper and into the net to make it five nil and ended an excellent first half for the home side. It all left the Bradwell team a bit shell shocked and a beaten team with a half still to play.
The second half started with McBride coming off and being replaced by Luke Sperling. Sperling, coming into central midfield did not make the home side any weaker, despite McBride’s outstanding first half display. Despite the score line, Bradwell came out and really tried to make a game of it in the second half and contained Waters to a certain extent. Waters made their second substitution with Harrison Duff coming on for Greenwood. Duff, another young player who played for Waters’ youth team, strode on and made a good contribution, a very confident player with potential going into adult football.
It took the home team a while to get the sixth goal, which came from a Jones glancing header. Jones was always a threat going forward and scored the seventh goal for the home side. A slight lack of concentration allowed Bradwell to score a goal of their own, which only seemed to annoy Waters and denied them a clean sheet. Another attack started from the back with Duff and Dan Stevens - another 17-year-old player from the successful youth teams - linking well for Stevens to provide an accurate pass across to Sperling on the edge of the box, who proceeded to smash the ball into the bottom right corner. Alex Robins replaced Scott Ancell for his debut for this development team. With better service and if not for a cracking save from the Bradwell keeper, he would have got on the score sheet himself. The good attacking display was underpinned by some sterling defensive work from Dom Clarke and Luke Van Spall in defence.
Old Bradwell United will probably be one of the weaker teams in this league but Waters’ mix of more players that are experienced and younger players really worked well together and provided a positive game and result for the Devs side.
Luke van Spall