Angels U15s open league campaign with away draw at Welling Utd
By Jim Rowe
Honours even in open game
The under 15s kicked off their season with an away trip to Welling United. Angels started brightly on a very narrow pitch but it was the hosts that took the lead, Angels failing to clear a corner and Welling poking the ball home. It was clear Welling were very strong aerially Hazelwood and Murphy contesting a lot of long balls. Balcombe and Gibb sweeping up behind and Exall who started very brightly trying to start play off from left back.
The game was played at a very fast pace neither team able to string a series of passes together and both midfields struggling to influence the game. Angels were slowly getting back into the game though, Tyrie reacting quickest to a loose ball on the edge of the box and drawing a clever free kick. Lansdowne then expertly curling the free kick into the top corner to level the score. Angels then starting to get on top Billy Kent producing a great save by the Welling keeper tipping onto the post.
Angels then made a number of changes Hermitage coming on down the left, Smith on the right and Lawrence up top. Lawrence making an immediate impact squeezing between the defence and hitting a great left footed shot that produced a great block from the defender. Angels then giving away a number of cheap free kicks and both teams really struggling to create anything from open play. Just before half time Angels then giving away another free kick on the edge of the box and the Welling player hitting a rocket of a shot Gibb somehow managed to tip onto the bar.
Angels made more changes at half time Wates coming on down the right and Toby Kent coming into the middle but the team continued to fail to string any decent passing moves together, the pitch not really suiting Angels wide players. Both teams continued to play at a frantic pace closing each other down very quickly. Welling then taking the lead probably against the run of the play, a clearance spinning off their striker and somehow going into the net. Welling now had a lead to defend and Angels started to take a firm grip on the game, Nwaanosike and Smith starting to cause real problems down the right. Set plays though continued to look the like the only scoring chances for both teams, Hermitage delivering a great corner that Hazelwood headed inches wide. Time was starting to run out for Angels but after some great work down the left Lansdowne fired across the area, two players just missing but Howie had arrived late on the edge of the box and smashed into the tope corner. Angels now started to sense all 3 points were on offer and continued to camp in Welling's half Billy Kent holding off a challenge and brilliantly slipping in Smith who was denied by another great save by the keeper. Welling though in the final minute catching Angels on the break, poking past Gibb in goal but Toby Kent reading brilliantly and clearing off the line to save Angels a point.
Angels have to be happy with a point after going behind twice but the manager making far too many changes and still getting to grips with managing a bigger squad.
Team Gibb, Murphy, Balcombe, Hazelwood, Exall, Howie, Tyrie, Wilkins, Nwanosike, Lansdowne, Kent B, Lawrence, Hermitage, Smith, Kent T, Wates
Next week the team are away to Bearsted.