No exaggeration to say this was Yellows finest hour producing their best ever display against one of the top U12 sides with a superb, dazzling, energetic and focused team performance from start to finish which has been threatening to explode in recent games even though the results of those games were disappointing, somewhat unrewarding and not truly indicative of their improvement. What they had shown previously in patches they exhibited throughout this game in a breath-taking spectacle, a fantastic match entrancing all who were lucky enough to see it and who could only look on in awe, admiration and pride. I.T.P.A played their part and probably expected to win considering previous outcomes between the two sides but they could not have expected the vast change in Yellows’ confidence since those games with their passing and teamwork faultless on a G3 surface at Stamford’s Zeeco Stadium which seemed more conducive to their playing style.
Yellows went a goal down in the first minute from a right corner evading keeper Oscar Townsin and defenders and tapped in at the far post with an encompassing feeling of Deja vu but, the home side seemed on automatic pilot undeterred by this early setback and just flew at I.T.P.A kamikaze style with concerted intent looking to reverse this setback immediately. Their forceful play paid off after 10 minutes when the fearless and very talented Harry Wallace crossed from the right with the ball spiraling over the defender’s foot and head unable to make a clean contact with Ally Jordan running in to kill the spin with a first time controlled half volley into the left side of the net for the equaliser. The game was played at a frantic but controlled pace swinging backward and forwards and the brilliant Dylan Carrick, transformed from left wing to left back, a masterstroke in recent games, was again outstanding and unbeatable with his pace combined with his close quarter harrying and tackling to frustrate and block his disillusioned opponent. Back after last week’s absence, keeper Oscar Townsin was calm, solid and making good saves with his accurate throwing and kicking being a factor in Yellows’ positive play. The engine room of Wallace and Ollie Grice was superb, winning and holding the ball until the right moment to release and relentlessly niggling away to make inroads into their opponents half and contributing to most of Yellows’ attacks aided by Jordan’s touches, precision passing and running off the ball creating spaces in the middle area. On the right side, Morgan Swann was a joy to behold as his total concentration saw him take on and seemingly glide past defenders then hitting dangerous crosses backed up behind by the solid, dependable Sam Harris who can read the game to cover any imminent danger with good timing then knowing when to release the ball, and as always does the simple things so well. Jacob Hewitt is another unsung hero who defends as though his life depends on it with his admirable focus and determination to chase players down and often saves the day by simply getting a foot in. With their mesmerising team play, Yellows’ took the lead when a cross from Grice found Jordan running in to touch forward deftly to sniffer Byron Lee Taylor who cleverly flicked the ball with the outside of his right foot into the right corner for a beautifully crafted goal and his relief to get on the score sheet after a couple of barren games. I.T.P.S hit back just before half time with a goal from a corner identical to their first for 2-2.
The second half saw both sides maintain the intensity, maybe even upping it a notch with the same nonstop aggressive play. The master of footwork, the majestic Ben Doyle was almost unstoppable going forward with his desire to win every ball and has improved tremendously since finding his latent tigerish streak which makes him doubly difficult for opponents to manage with spectators knowing they are in for a treat when he is on the ball exhibiting his captivating skills. The vastly improved Mathew Jones contributed to the cause with his workhorse running, tackling and passing to be a thorn in I.T.P.S’s side and is fast becoming an integral team player. Yellows’ were controlled and ruthless in their desire to win this top game and re-took the lead after a brilliantly flighted cross found centre back Luke McKevitt running in to power an unstoppable bullet header into the net for a 3-2 lead. Mckevitt has great presence and is fast improving to become a pivotal member in the side and, for a tall defender, has surprisingly quick, clever feet. Yellows added a fourth from a pinpoint Doyle corner headed home by the rampant Grice soon followed by number five, a team effort ending with Jordan’s fantastic through ball finding Lee Taylor running in from the right edge of the box to thump into the right corner for his brace to take an unassailable lead with time running out for an I.T.P.A fight back. They tried as they hit a third goal late on but too late to alter this magnificent but thoroughly deserved result.