U9’s Share the spoils

U9’s Share the spoils

Posted on June 25, 2011 in 'Juniors 2011'

Hamersley Rovers Junior FC 3 v 3 ECU Joondalup U9’s

OSSF U10 North Blue – Sunday 12th June 2011 – Round 6 – By Stu Gilsenan

Although they created more clear cut goal scoring chances than their opponents, the ECU U9’s came away with a well deserved point against Hamersley Rovers in Round 6 of the Optus small Sided Football Under 10 North Blue League.

In typical fashion, the youngsters started the brighter of the two teams and, as most teams have found already this season, the lack of physical presence in the much younger ECU ranks was more than made up for with how they worked the ball and quickly closed down the spaces.

Harry Blunt’s quick feet and tough tackling ensured that the Rovers’ full back endured a torrid time down the right from the very first whistle, as this channel was time after time exploited in the early exchanges. It was no surprise then when Blunt opened the scoring in the 10th minute. A pass out wide from Theo Gilsenan saw Blunt control the ball on the touch line before cleverly cutting in, skipping past a couple of challenges before wrong footing the keeper with a shot which flew in at the near post.

Hamersley however were starting to create chances of their own and their physical presence saw them break through the ECU defence and threaten on a couple of occasion’s midway through the first half; the ECU defence remaining strong. Two successive corners following some good work down the left again put the ECU defenders on notice as the pressure began to mount. A quick break following another ECU attack saw the Rovers’ number 12 run from box to box and his shot on 14 minutes rifled into the bottom corner to square the game at 1-1. A minute later, the ECU defence was again caught napping and their failure to clear the ball allowed a Rovers attacker to nip in and score the second of the game.

Undeterred, ECU were dominating the midfield and their classy interchanges were creating great opportunities for strikers Wesley Casimir-Brown and Joe Hobson but neither could find a way past the Rovers ‘keeper and, unbelievably, ECU went in at half time 2-1 down.

A re-shuffle at the start of the second half saw ECU deploy some real width with Dayan Bhudia occupying the right flank and Dylan Leonard the left. The tactical change almost proved an instant success in the 28th minute as Freddie Saddler met Leonards cross, only to see the ball cleared off the line by a desperate Rovers defence. The pressure did finally tell and it was Saddler who took full advantage, chipping in from the edge of the box to bring the scores level on 35 minutes. However, Hamersley again took the lead completely against the run of play a minute later with an absolute screamer. Their number 12 picked up a loose ball just inside his own half before unleashing a shot from all of twenty metres which rocketed into the top corner to make it 3-2.

The pressure was again starting to mount and ECU were seemingly camped inside the opposition half creating all sorts havoc and should have been awarded a penalty in the 40th minute as Nathan Rhodes found himself on the wrong end of a desperate lunge by a Rovers defender only for the referee to controversially award a free kick, deeming the foul to have taken place just outside the box, much to the dismay of the ECU players and officials.

A fantastic run by Theo Gilsenan saw him carry the ball deep into the Rovers’ defensive third and, following a neat trick, squared the ball to Bhudia who outfoxed his marker and delivered a pin point cross into the heart of the penalty area. The ball was only half cleared and fell to Leonard who superbly chipped a swerving shot over the ‘keeper to draw the scores level again at 3-3 with only five minutes remaining on the clock.

Wesley Casimir-Brown was credited with keeping his side in the game as again the Rovers broke quickly out of defence and forced ‘keeper Casimir-Brown into a terrific save in the 48th minute. Not to be outdone, it was ECU who had the final chance of the game and it was Leonard again who tried to keep the dream alive and fired in another fantastic dipping shot from distance. The ball was looping goalwards only for an acrobatic last ditch over head clearance from a Rovers defender denying the youngsters all three points.

Full time:                                Hamersley Rovers                  3 – 3         ECU Joondalup U9’s

(Blunt 10 min)

(Saddler 35 min)

(Leonard 45 min)


ECU – 2 – Aaron Louttit, 3 – Freddie Sadler, 4 – Ben Ford, 5 – Dayan Bhudia, 6 – Harry Blunt, 7 – Theo Gilsenan, 8 – Dylan Leonard, 9 – Wesley Casimir-Brown, 11 – Matthew McLaughlin, 12 – Nathan Rhodes, 13 – Kurt Crompton, 14 – Joe Hobson

Coach – John Higgins