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Under 13s - Match centre

Tonbridge Angels
Sun 11 Feb 12:00 - League Full time

Angels U13s overcome Holmesdale away

10 men Angels see off determined ‘dale

Due to illness and holidays the young blues were forced to attack this game with a bare 11 , with Tom Monaghan feeling unwell in the warm up, he lasted only 2 minutes, therefore forced to play the remaining 68 minutes with 10 players.

Game plan, formation, team talk all now out the window...a slight change in the shape , now meaning the boys had to maintain possession to counter the overload in midfield.

For the first 20 minutes, Holmesdale shaded possession and territory, rightly so with the extra man. However after minutes Angels should have been ahead when Abduhakim Abdulahe (AK) went one on one with the Holmesdale GK , only to miss the target. A few more half chances went wide, but the 10 men held firm until half time.

A truly outstanding second half was about to ensue. Alfie Dennis, Jacob Hodges and Ilyas Walker were absolutely outstanding at the back defending at times 3 v 3 and 4 v 3 situations. All hitting at least one memorable huge tackle at vital moments of the game. Joe Wallis and Mike Hollamby worked well against the overload and managed to pick there passes well. Frank Lavington and Ben Shields had the tiresome job of working up and down the channels for 70 minutes with very little let up. And a top two of Fin Wolvey and AK worked hard and linked up well.

Holmesdale had spells in this second half, but it was all Angels, with determination, team spirit and our ever growing quality, we were now splitting Holmesdale open frequently, more missed chances, more close efforts to no reward . Ben Shields and Joe Wallis put in some teasing deliveries on the GK's head but was always an inch away from an Angels head. With 15 minutes to go it looked as if it was going to be one of those days.

However with 13 minutes left to play a surging run from Alfie Dennis, culminating in a great delivery from deep arrived in the box, a first Angels effort was blocked, however it fell nicely for AK on the half volley to finish for his 13th of the season. Remarkably the boys had enough energy to immediately hunt the call down from kick off, regaining possession and were looking dangerous.

With 9 minutes remaining, some great defensive work from Alfie Dennis , who managed to clear high towards AK who did brilliantly to beat and hold of 3 players before winning a free kick on the wide right. Joe Wallis took on managerial instruction to have a go at goal to try and beat the diminutive goalkeeper, the result was a goal. The ball in deceived everyone, with a minor deflection on the way through the ball crept in. 2-0.

With 8 minutes to play Holmesdale went through one on one with Goalkeeper Matt Larkin who's distribution was outstanding on the day. Baring down on goal, the striker about to get a shot away, until Ilyas Walker got himself from a LCB/LB over to the right hand side to put in an outstanding crunching tackle which everyone could only stand up an applaud. A real top class bit of defending, showing how much this player has come on in recent weeks.

Full time- 2-0.

A great performance from the boys who dug deep for that win. Real credit to our shape and discipline . Matt Larkin in goal without one save to make after playing 68 minutes with 10 men. An outstanding effort.

MOM- Everyone involved .

Library Picture : Wesley Filtness

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