Today marked the day of BLUs U10s first match of 2022 (albeit a friendly) and the girls started us it with an absolute banger. I won’t waffle on in the introduction because there is a lot to cover in this match report!
Having lost Abbie (our legendary goalkeeper) to covid, as well as Zoe and Susie to prior engagements, the girls started the match unsure about what they were about to face. Eleanor was the first to take on the role of goalkeeper, with the added promise to her dad that she would get her brand new goalie gloves as muddy as possible. With a rocky start to the match (we will blame it on the christmas break) we soon got into the flow of things. Our midfielders (Evie, Isla and Bonnie) kept good possession of the ball, dribbling round Bath’s players and finding good spaces to receive passes. This soon lead to our first goal of the match, also marking Bonnie’s first ever goal! Alice dribbled the ball up and passed it onto Bonnie, who took it all the way into the box and placed it in the back of the net. We carried on strong after our goal, with our amazing defenders (Leah and Rosie, as well as Niamh who came on shortly after) clearing the ball far from our goal, avoiding any unnecessary pressure from their attackers. A quick goalie change saw Evie go in goal for Eleanor and brought Eleanor on in defence. Not long after, we scored our next goal. A beautiful pass from Poppy slotted it straight through to Sophie who fired it past the goalkeeper. But this assist by Poppy was just the warm up, she went on to score not one, not two, but three goals within the next 5 minutes!!!! (That must be a hat trick record). The first came from a lovely pass by Isla, where Poppy turned and slotted it in the back of the net. The second came from a corner (again assisted by Isla), where Poppy was stood at the front post and elegantly tapped it in. And the third (you guessed it, another Isla assist!) was a wonderful through-ball from Isla, which Poppy took on and fired straight into the goal, with an insane amount of power! That saw us into half time.
After an exhilerating first half, the girls were all buzzing (might’ve been from the hot chocolates most of them were drinking too) and ready to start the second half. Poppy was next to take on goalkeeper, making sure that the ball didn’t touch the back of the net. Our defenders (Leah and Eleanor) cleared every ball that came near them, putting all their power it and not letting a single one past. Only 5 minutes into the second half saw Isla finally bag her goal of the game. A strong throw-in by Evie landed at Isla’s feet, she then took it on her left foot (!) and whacked it into the bottom corner. A substitution saw Sophie come on for Alice as stricker, and it didn’t take long for Sophie to put her name on the score sheet again. A powerful corner from Isla resulted in a scramble in the box, Sophie was well positioned on the edge of the scramble and as soon as the ball came out to her she slotted it in the back of the net. This was soon followed by another goal by Sophie! A cross from Isla landed directly at Sophie’s feet, which she took closer to the goal and popped it in. Our midfielders were looking good, confidently dribbling the ball around and winning their individual battles. One successful battle lead to Bonnie dribbling the ball up the wing, all the way from the halfway line, and into the box, where she finished the wonder-run by placing the ball in the bottom corner of the goal! (“Viva Ronaldo” – Jamil). Our final goalkeeper substitution saw Sophie go into goal for Poppy, and Poppy come on as striker. With not long left of the match, we wanted to make the last few minutes count. Other substitutions saw Rosie and Eleanor take on a midfielder position for the first time, and Evie drop back into defence with Niamh. Rosie made a beautiful run up the pitch, dribbling past all of their players and taking it into the box, where she shot and hit the post!! But soon after this Poppy banged another one in the net, with an impressive power-shot from outside the box (I wouldn’t have wanted to be the goalkeeper!). Poppy wasn’t quite finished yet. A lovely centre pass from Poppy to Isla saw Isla boot the ball up the pitch, which Poppy ran onto and fired into the back of the net! The final whistle was blown and handshakes were shared with the very strong Bath City Development team.
All of the girls had an absolutely amazing match, choosing the star players was so hard. A special mention to all of the girls who bagged themselves lots of goals (especially Poppy!), and stepped out of their comfort zone by trying new positions. However, it’s not all about the scoring but also stopping them from scoring, and this is why Leah was our first Star Player – for her powerful clearances and tackles in defence, applying all the skills she’s learnt from training into the match. Our second Star Player was Bonnie, for scoring her first ever goal (plus a second) and showing some amazing strength through dribbling and tackling.
Written by Ellie Haines (U10s coach).