Firsts beat Sneyd! | Solid start to the season continues for both teams by Dunc, 8th Oct 2011
“Young maaaaaaaan” McMahon sharpens his pencil for the first time this season… The Reserves won too!
Sneyd Park 2 – 3 Hounds
In the 10 glorious years since its establishment, Sporting Greyhound FC has never beaten Sneyd Park 1st team. The Hounds have suffered several punishing defeats at their hands, making it a very uncomfortable fixture. A last minute equaliser from Poole last season had given the Hounds the belief they needed to finally shake this monkey off their backs.
Manager Matt McMahon was keen for the team to bounce back from a shock GFA cup exit last week, and made a few changes in a “horses for courses” style approach to this game, including controversially, playing himself from the kick-off. A confident start from the Hounds saw an open and free-flowing first 10 minutes, both teams trying to impose their style of play on the game. Sneyd Park looking to exploit space behind the Hounds back line by playing (long) balls over the top, the Hounds trying their best to keep the ball on the deck with passes to feet.
The deadlock was broken on 15 minutes, when a Sneyd Park free kick was flicked on amid a clash of several players, the despairing efforts of Fletcher could not prevent the ball going over the line. My angle did not conclusively tell if the initial shot was going in or not, one for the Dubious Goals Committee perhaps? The Hounds continued to play their style of football and pressed to get the equaliser, but another free kick doubled Sneyd’s advantage. A deflected effort beat Franklin in the Hounds goal on 30 minutes to set the Hounds staring another defeat to Sneyd in the face.
The famed Hounds spirit did not allow their heads to drop though and they continued to press to get back into the game, Little went close with a header and several half chances were wasted up until the break. At half-time the usually rallying team talk was given, we were being ever so slightly wasteful in possession, take our time and keep the ball more and we can get back in it was the gist of this one.
A nice passage of play saw Harvey released into the area only to be felled by the Sneyd defender, without hesitation the ref pointed to the spot. Harvey picked himself up, dusted himself down and stepped up confidently to slot home beyond the despairing dive of the ‘keeper. 2-1 we’re back in it! Hounds continued to press and look for the equaliser as the dominance increased in the second half. Several chances were created and wasted at both ends until a neat through ball released Harvey one-on-one with the ‘keeper on his weaker left foot. Harvey has always claimed he is a) prolific in front of goal and b) both footed. Thankfully he lived up to both to slot his 4th of the season and put the Hounds level with 20 minutes to go and in the ascendancy.
McMahon, with cramping calf muscles, subbed himself off with 15 minutes to go, assured his team would hold out for a confidence restoring draw against the champions. But it got better, with 5 minutes to play, Parry, who was switched to play on the right in a tactical stroke of genius from McMahon, was released and slotted calmly past the on rushing ‘keeper helping to justify his extortionate summer transfer fee. McMahon, forgetting his cramped calf muscles, was last seen running and jumping in celebration 20 yards up the touchline in scenes reminiscent of Mourinho’s touchline slide at Old Trafford whilst managing FC Porto in 2004. The Hounds then prepared for backs against the wall defending for the last 5 minutes but the anticipated onslaught including the proverbial kitchen sink did not get thrown and the Hounds defence stood strong limiting Sneyd to one half chance to try and salvage something from the game.
The win sees Hounds move up to 2nd in the table, but Manager McMahon is not letting his players get carried with delusions of grandeur “I won’t let the players get carried away with delusions of grandeur. We played very well and I think we deserved our win today. The position in the table is good to see, but it means nothing at the moment. We need to keep working hard and build on this momentum we’ve got in the league.”
Hounds season ticket holder Jimmy Daniel is over the moon at the run of form the team is on “I’m over the moon” said Jimmy “The run of form is amazing, 5 league wins on the bounce is the best I can remember (Stato can confirm) recently and it shows good things are happening at the club this year. It’s a great time to be a Hound.”
The Hounds take a break from league action next week as they face Torpedo in the Norman Hardy cup 1st Round.
Hounds: Franklin (7); McMahon (Roberts ’75(7)) (7), Fletcher (7), Ford (8), Williams (7); Chequer (Bryant ’65 (7)) (7), Harvey (9), Paul (8), Redbond (Moore ’60 (7) (7), Parry (8); Little (7)
Hounds Reserves 3 – 1 Ashley Reserves
Can’t remember a damn thing. We won though. Chris Hearne bagged a brace, Timedine got t’other one.