Lindsworth Lions 7th league fixture of the 2021-2022 Season was played on Friday 1st April a.k.a. “April Fools” 2022 against Keyham Lodge School, away.
The lions had to travel a bit of a mission themselves this time, as we have not had an away fixture for a while and the venue was a lovely community 3G pitch near Leicester. On arrival the pupils appeared a bit nervous as it was unfamiliar territory against a new opponent. Whether it was the journey or the being away from home, they had a very unsettled start and allowed their opponents too much time and space in possession. This led to 2 early goals from Keyham Lodge but not in a way the Lions would have wished, more due to haphazard defending and sloppy passing. The Lions persevered and slowly started to turn up for the game; one by one they started to become a bit more organised in defence and a bit more thoughtful with possession in attack. However, their opponents were looking for their next home victory, so they did not relent in driving forward and attempting to score at every opportunity. They jumped on every misplaced pass, badly timed run or header and capitalised on winning their battles with a lack lustre defence and a goalie in unfamiliar settings to convert another two opportunities throughout the half.
One player with sheer determination not to get beat by the team was captain Derry; who led by example and hounded the ball as often as he could to ensure he put them under as much pressure as possible. He was also instrumental in the first Lion goal with a perfectly placed corner kick to striker Finley, who attempted a scissor kick volley which nearly paid off. Unfortunately, he was denied glory by the woodwork but midfield star Khalisha was on hand to help the ball find its way over the line from a rebound inside the 6 yard box. The score going into half time was 4-1.
The Lions went into the team talk with a very frustrated manager because of how much they appeared to not even want to be there. The team had no excuses, there was not one battle that was uneven across the pitch and if the Lions played to their full potential there was no reason why they should be trailing by 3 goals. They had given their opponents too much respect and underrated their own abilities. So the manager made it clear everyone needed to up the work rate, stop watching the captain do all our work for us, protect our keeper more and start scoring some goals by showing them how well we can actually play.
The Lions answered this by showing much more determination and confidence in the second half. Everyone seemed to be playing for one another and the game turned around. The chances created by their opponents kept coming but the Lions seemed much more resilient and resistant to them, only conceding one goal that half. The Lions worked hard enough to disrupt and disturb Keyham’s defenders and earn a penalty that the captain absolutely smashed into the top corner. Final score 5-2; deserved victory to the opposition but at least the Lions ended the game with a bit of pride and showed what they are truly capable of when they turn up and give their all.
Hopefully this will be a lesson to the team to always give 110% regardless of the opponent or setting.
Squad on the day: Remell C, Neyo B (GK), Jack Mc, Khalisha W, Derry H, Finley W, Josh D, Jamie T, Brandon D and Kymaree G.