It’s been a couple of weeks since I last watched my son play football. My daughter had her tap dance exam and we went to the literature festival, so the last game I watched was a rather rainy 4-2 defeat – their first of the season. I’m pleased to say it didn’t dampen their spirits and they went on to win their next couple of games, keeping them firmly in contention near the top of the league – and my son in his position as third top goalscorer IN THE LEAGUE. Not bad for a boy who had always played in defence until this season.
So I was looking forward to watching them again and hopefully seeing them get another win. Their latest match was going to be a tough one – another team near the top of the league.
They got off to a shaky start. None of them seemed to be playing at their best. It was definitely an equal game – or more in favour of the other side, to be honest. It wasn’t a great surprise when the other team scored fairly early on.
Being 1-0 down seemed to shake my son’s team up. Suddenly they were playing at their best – passing, crossing, defending, getting into space, fighting for the ball… It wasn’t long before they got one back, but it was still a pretty even game. It was 1-1 at half-time.
They were definitely the better team in the second half, but that goal to put them in the lead was elusive. There were a lot of shots on goal, but the other team had a really good goalie. They weren’t helped by a particularly whistle-happy referee either, who seemed to stop the game at the drop of a hat. He pointed out every one of their foul throws and gave them little bits of advice it really wasn’t his place to give. These kids are 10 and 11 for goodness sake! They’re bound to get things wrong sometimes. Play the advantage and let the game run!
They were more than half way through the second half, when they scored their second goal. 2-1 up is a good position to be in, but with 13 minutes to play, it by no means guarantees victory. They needed another one, just to be sure!
Another one came and it was 3-1. Not many minutes left. They must have won it!
The kids just kept on playing their socks off. It would have been easy to slack off at 3-1 up with only 10 minutes left to play, but they didn’t. They were all over the opposition and they were loving it. My son had such a look of determination on his face. He was so fast and so strong and his passes were so effective. It was a brilliant game to watch.
Hang on a minute! It was 4-1!
The fifth goal got the biggest cheer of all – a boy who had been playing for the team for over a year, but had never scored and was so desperate to get his first goal. His team-mates all jumped on him and the parents cheered just that little bit louder.
And then on the final whistle, the sixth goal went in! 6-1! That’s what you call a victory.
My son didn’t score, but he wasn’t disappointed. He was so proud of his team-mates and he knows how well he played and what a valuable contribution he made to the game.
They’re joint top of the league (although technically second on goal difference, but the youth league don’t seem to bother with goal difference!). Not bad for the team that got thrashed every game last season!