With the 1st Team match postponed on Saturday, which, by the way, has been re-arranged for Saturday 21 November as both teams were free on that date due to their respective opponents still being in the FA Vase, it is time for a catch up.
Firstly, the Under-18’s lost 2-5 at league leaders at Hendon FC last Thursday. Manager Nick Bailey has sent a brief report and here it is:
Ashford 18s travelled to league leaders Hendon on Wednesday evening and lost by 5 goals to 2.
Playing on a fast 3G pitch we knew we had to be at our best and for 45 minutes we were, our pressing and passing paid off when Otman Trad was slid in and made no mistake, 0-1 Ashford after 30 minutes. Lack of concentration and poor marking left Hendon’s Keegan Cole unmarked at the far post, without any pressure from our defence he shot and made it 1-1.
Ashford picked up the tempo once again and looked dangerous going forward, this time it was a long ball to Mason Roseboom who calmly chipped the oncoming keeper, 1-2 Ashford.
The second half started with high tempo and we had a great chance to extend our lead but couldn't take the opportunity, Hendon finally equalised when our keeper mistimed his run and left a open goal for Hendon to take full advantage 2-2. The 3rd goal from Hendon was a well worked goal and one for the cameras, a half volley that left our keeper no chance.
We kept going and got ourselves back into the game when a unfortunate mistimed kick from our keeper hit the oncoming Hendon midfielder in the face and somehow found the back of the net 4-2.
The final goal came in the closing minutes and it finished 5-2 to Hendon.
A game of two halves, the first half we showed that we can hold our own in this league and on our day we are as good, if not better than our opposition - the second half showed that mistakes can cost you dearly at this level.
This week the Under-18’s have another tough match this week, on Wednesday evening, when they will entertain Aldershot Town U18 in the Ryman Youth League, kick-off 7.45 p.m. at Short Lane.
The Ladies side continued their winning run on Sunday with a 6-0 victory over Orpington Ladies. Here is the report:
Ashford Ladies comfortably beat Orpington Ladies in the one sided affair 6-0 after the game was cut short due an injury.
Ashford took the lead in the first half when Amy O’Sullivan struck the ball into the near post from an unlikely angle after beating two defenders.
Vicky James extended the lead soon after with a stunning strike from 25 yards out.
The Orpington goalkeeper was in inspired form against the league’s top goal scorer however Ashley Cheatley pounced on a lose clearance from a corner and fired in her first of the game.
It was half time and Ashford were managing well on a pitch that was heavily affected by the downpour of rain the day before. Set pieces were a particularly strength for Ashford with the skipper James, putting in some great crosses. It was another set piece which saw Cheatley double her tally, rising above everyone else to head into the back of the net.
O’Sullivan was having a lot of success on the wing and found herself with a lot of time and space on the edge of the 18-yard box. She struck into the top corner with the goalkeeper only able to watch as it flew past her.
Cheatley scored the final goal of the game, which was the pick of the bunch. She picked up the ball from a cleared corner on the half way line leaving two defenders behind before wrong footing the goalkeeper and finding the net.
It was a fantastic goal to end a very professional performance by Ashford, in difficult conditions.
Our commiserations go out to the Orpington player who suffered a horrible injury 70 minutes into the game, we wish you a speedy recovery. The game was cut short due to this.
The Junior sides were in action on Sunday which was a generally successful day results wise, as follows:
Billy U7s 9-10 Kingston
Graham U10s 8-2 Halliford
Larry U12s 2-0 Bedfont Sports
Craig U13s 4-4 Kew Park Rangers
Fin U13s 5-2 Worcester Park
Martin U14s 10-6 Hampton Youth
Ben U15s 1-3 AFC Wembley
Tim U16s 1-0 Abbey Rangers
Carl U17s 1-7 Horsley
Joe U17s 4-3 Kew Park
Graham Felch, Under-10 manager has taken the time to send in a report from his game and here it is:
On a pitch which wasn't the best for passing, due to the previous days horrendous weather conditions the boys set about their task with really good enthusiasm keen to show that the previous week was just a blip. This was quickly rewarded with the 1st goal of the game following some excellent pressing from the attacking three, with Lewis finding the net with a tidy finish, with the 2nd following very quickly before Freddie ended a super move finding the net with a crisp shot from the edge of the box.
Kew were very keen to play a passing game of their own which was good to see and often tried to counter with fast attacking play with Jack being called on twice in the 1st half before to keep the opposition at bay before handing over GK duties to Erik for the 2nd period.
With a couple of changes at HT, the boys again showed they had learnt a lot from Saturdays session in the pouring rain adding a fifth goal, before Kew pulled a couple of goals back quickly again their fast attacking catching out a goal hungry Ashford ( a lesson to the boys to that they must hold their shape & position) then came the move of the game starting with Erik. Six passes involving five players and Lewis finishing off for number 7 ( his 6th) and in the final moments of the game Rudi adding number 8 following more good work between himself, Caden & Freddie. This was by far the best team performance the boys have put in this season and bodes well for the future weeks - Certainly one for them to remember and their delight at the end of the match made it very rewarding for us coaches. – more of the same next week please lads!!!
Junior Chairman Nick Bailey was out and about on Sunday and has sent us this summary of the day:
With my Sundays free from running a side I have the opportunity to catch up with all our Junior sides and watch them play.
This week I had the pleasure of watching Billy's under 7s play in a 19 goal thriller. After Ashford finding themselves trailing by 7 goals to 2 they managed to pull it back to 7-7 and then there was never more than a goal advantage from both sides, the game finally finished 10-9 with Kingston taking all three points, but I must say that that was the perfect advert for developing grass roots football, our team has some fantastic players and certainly ones for the future..
I saw 5 matches yesterday but another game that I must mention was Craig s under 13s, they were playing top of the table Kew Park Rangers and after the first 15 minutes they found themselves 3 goals down with a mountain to climb. The lads managed to come out a different team in the second half by pulling 3 quick goals back to level the tie and they had a great opportunity to score the forth and get in front but they couldn't late it with the outside post denying them the lead. Kew eventually scored the forth but Ashford soon equalised and the game finished 4-4. I have seen these lads develop over the last few seasons and I can really see the team believing in themselves and its a pleasure to watch.
The best part of my day was watching one of my lads (Tommy Fright) manage his new under 7s at home, it was great to see a lad who I have managed since he was 8 now stepping into the coaching role and doing such a great job. Tom is a fantastic player who now plays for our midweek Ryman side, this is the vision that I would like to have - our own coaching our own. Well done Tom.
The Sunday side lost 2-8 to VOS but we don’t have a report on the proceedings as yet.
Following Wednesday’s youth match, the next game is on Saturday when Redhill are the visitors in the Combined Counties League, when they will be making their first visit to Short Lane since October 1990 when we met in the Surrey Senior Cup. More on that one later in the week.