St John's School, Leatherhead 4th XI vs Haileybury
On: Saturday, 25 Feb 2017
Venue: at Home
In the end, this was a well deserved 4-1 victory, but it took a very long time for the team to settle and the result never looked assured until the last quarter of the game. Half-time saw the two sides locked at 0-0 and, although there was no doubt that St John's had dominated possession and territory there was still precious little to show for it. Harry Britten had come close with a long range strike and Wes van der Ploeg had rattled the bar, but the closest we had come to scoring was from a misplaced Wes pass which almost trickled in- wind assisted- at the far post.
Harsh words were spoken at half-time and the 4ths came out fighting. Indeed, within three minutes St John's were finally a goal to the good, Harry Britten latching on to Guy Broad's route one clearance to slide the ball past the keeper. 1-0. And yet, within a minute, it was 1-1, when poor defending let in Haileybury's striker to slot the ball neatly past Guy Broad. This finally spurred the team into action and some impressive passing and incisive attacking ensued. Yet it was not until the 14th minute of the second half that our dominance finally paid off. A much practised corner routine saw the impressive Harry Britten peeling off his marker to glance in a near-post header to put St John's 2-1 up. Now it was constant pressure from St John's, though Haileybury still looked threatening on the break. Harry Jany went close with a long shot, before Harry Roberts put the finishing touches to a Jany cross that tricked past a sea of feet before his timely arrival at the far post. 3-1. But if anyone was beginning to feel complacent, a reminder of the frustrating presence of hubris came when Guy Broad spilled a speculative shot and a Haileybury player somehow managed to roll the rebound just wide of an empty net. Once again, St John's were galvanised and minutes later Harry Snell volleyed in the goal of the match from outside the box. 4-1, and as the final minutes ticked away Harry Britten headed against the post and Harry Jany was only just denied by a good save. It's great to win, but concentration is key!