Rugby Town JFC U18’s v Stratford Town U18’s
“Joel Richards Memorial” Birmingham County Cup
5th December 2016
Rugby Town JFC were looking to progress in the Birmingham FA County Cup 1/4 final but first had to beat a good side in Stratford Town, this fixture was a repeat of a Midland Floodlit League fixture the previous Monday which saw Rugby win 5-3. This was always going to be an entertaining encounter and it certainly lived up to expectations.
The game started at a great tempo and chances were created early doors, with Callum Jones breaking down the left flank putting a good ball into the box only to see the Stratford keeper get to a low cross at the feet of Sam Lockley. On 4 minutes it was Callum Jones who was sent free on the left wing from a Cam’ron Barrett pass, Jones dribbled at pace and put a great ball in for Harry Sawyer to side foot home from 6 yards out at the back post. Rugby began to impose their passing game with a patient build up having majority of the ball in the opening 1/4 of the game and more chances were created but not converted. It was only a matter of time until Rugby doubled their lead which they did through Sam Lockley on 15 minutes, after a patient build through midfield Jac Redhead slid a precise pass through to Sam Lockley who made no mistake drilling the ball in the bottom right side of the goal.
The 2nd goal seemed to spur on the spirited opponents and they found a way back into the game after Ethan Flaig was adjudged to have handled the ball from a Stratford cross on the right handside, much to the surprise of every player and the spectators it was then decided he handled the ball in the box resulting in a Stratford penalty which was duly slotted home. Rugby 2 – Stratford 1. It was matter of minutes when Rugby restored their 2 goal advantage when a creative Jac Redhead linked up with Lockley who set the ball back to Redhead who neatly tucked away in the bottom left hand corner to make it 3-1 , it was 5 minutes later and Redhead doubled his goal tally for the evening when he moved the ball quickly between his feet in the box and drove the across goal finding the bottom corner making it 4-1 to Rugby. Rugby continued to dominate possession but some indecisive defending ended up gifting Stratford another goal to make it 4-2 , the half continued in similar fashion Rugby scored two more goals with Jac Redhead completing his hat trick and Nic Brandish getting on the scoresheet, Stratford also scored one more right on the whistle of half time making the score an incredible 6-3.
Rugby came out for the second half with the same intent but with a little more desire to defend appropriately, it was the prolific Sam Lockley who opened the scoring in the 2nd half when he broke free to out pace the Stratford back 4 to neatly place the ball into the bottom right hand corner making the score 7-3. Rugby began to tighten their grip on the game and not giving Stratford as many opportunities as they did in the first half, the central defensive partnership of Matt Clark and Ethan Flaig looked more organised and began to impose themselves on the game without being exposed by Stratford’s lively centre forward.
The floodgates were well and truly wide open and Rugby put on an attacking display of the highest quality, Sam Lockley completed his hat trick , Cam’ron Barrett scored 2 one great strike cutting in from the left wing and hitting an unstoppable shot from 25 yards followed by Nic Brandish getting his 2nd of the evening, the scoring was finished off by the exceptional Harry Sawyer who delicately dinked the ball over the keeper to make the score an incredible 11-3. Another positive for the night was seeing Connor Gamble back playing after 3 weeks out injured it was like he had never been away putting in an impressive 30 minutes from right back.
Team : – 1) Jamie Thornton 2) Harry Bartrum 3) Callum Jones 4) Gabe Barnwell (c) 5) Matt Clark 6) Ethan Flaig 7) Harry Sawyer 8) Nic Brandish 9) Sam Lockley 10) Jac Redhead 11) Cam’ron Barrett Subs 12) Will Harris 14) Takuma Sano Toney 15) Bryan Badu 16) Danny Bowes 17) Connor Gamble
Goals :- Sam Lockley (3) , Jac Redhead (3) , Cam’ron Barrett (2) , Nic Brandish (2) , Harry Sawyer (1)
To any football fan in the area, if you like good football we would welcome more support and trust me you will be entertained. Next Monday 12th December see’s the Rugby Town derby with the under 18’s from Butlin Road making their first visit to the new UEFA 2* astro turf at Kilsby Lane a 7.45 ko.