Rotherham U12 Boys 11-2 Wolverhampton U12 Boys
Team: Ethan, Alfie, Harvey, Kyle, Tiye, Max, Dravid, Rohi, Liam, Jacob, Ovidiy, Kristian, Solomon
A difficult away trip to Rotherham faced the Under 12's Boys on Saturday as both the weather and quality of football played by Rotherham posed us real problems. In a howling gale and driving rain, the boys found the conditions challenging and were soon 2-0 down after an early onslaught from a strong and well organised Rotherham side.
Continued pressure from Rotherham, who proved that regular fixtures are critical to being competitive at this standard of football, resulted in a score of 3-0 after the first period of 20 minutes, which was a fair reflection of the game. Whilst Wolverhampton tried to play passing football and playing out from the back, it was clear that conditions were always going to favour early balls forward and passing into space to allow runners on to the ball.
In the second period, conditions worsened and Wolverhampton soon found themselves 5-0 down after the break with Rotherham consistently finding space to cross the ball into the box which was often met by an unmarked attacking player. Going 5-0 down seemed to invigorate Wolverhampton, and after a period of sustained pressure, the ball fell to Max Gilbert who found himself in some space outside the box and was able to turn and volley into the roof of the net beating the Rotherham keeper.
A change of shape and reorganisation resulted in Wolverhampton competing better in all areas of the pitch but a penalty awarded to the Rotherham resulted in a 6-1 score at the end of the second period.
In the third and final period, Wolverhampton continued to play and never allowed their heads to drop even though it was clear that they were well beaten. Four more goals to Rotherham who were clinical in front of goal and inch-perfect in their passing laid the game to rest. A great consolation goal from Max, this time with his left foot, after he had been able to break through Rotherham's defence, completed the scoring. And on the referee's final whistle both teams headed straight to the sanctuary of the changing rooms for warmth and chip butty's!
Thank you to Rotherham SFA for the hospitality and we look forward to the second phase draw to see who we play in the ESFA Champions Cup after Christmas.