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Ashington Cougars U15 - Match centre

Ashington Cougars
Ifield Galaxy
Sat 9 Sep 09:30 - League Full time

Ashington Cougars U15 v Ifield Galaxy U15

Ashington Cougars U15 v Ifield Galaxy U15

Cougars first league game of the season saw them against the well organised Ifield Galaxy, last time the teams met it finished 3 -3 in a nail biting end to the season.
The Cougars boys had been looking forward to the game and needed no motivation and as soon as the game started they looked confident, however despite several close efforts, shots cleared off the line and goal mouth scrambles they were unable to take advantage of the early pressure and it was Ifield who opened the scoring against the run of play with a quality finish from their key player. The goal seemed to dishevel the Cougars players and it was no surprise when Ifield extended their lead to 2 – 0 shortly after.
However, reassuringly Cougars have maintained their fighting spirit from last season and once again came close on several occasions and shortly before half time after some great work from Thomas Cordingley it was Jamie Gallagher who got the much needed and deserved goal to bring them back into the game and at the half time break the score was 2 – 1 to Ifield – but Cougars were back in it…
As the second half started Ifield looked threatening but the back four of Liam Hutchison, Jack Evans, Oliver Rencontre and a new more aggressive Alex MacPherson showed their quality and kept the Ifield strikers at a safe distance from the Cougars goal.
Following the lead of the defending players the rest of the Cougars team started to grow in confidence once more and Thomas Fitzpatrick showed his strength and pace as he so often does to create a chance for himself and forced the ball into the Ifield net to draw the scores level.
Chance after chance seemed to come and go for Cougars until once more Thomas Fitzpatrick powered his way into the Ifield penalty area to create a half chance for William Farnes who managed to bundle the ball into the Ifield goal to give Cougars the lead for the first time in the match. With 15 minutes remaining Ifield piled on the pressure to get the goal they needed but two exceptional saves from Cavan Sopp, one when pushing a powerful shot against the cross bar, another when miraculously snatching the ball from an Ifield players feet as he was about to place the ball in the net kept Cougars ahead, however as the final ten minutes approached Ifield got a lucky break as the ball fell kindly to a player on the edge of the box and he drove his shot into the net leaving the keeper no chance.
With 3 minutes of the game remaining and a draw looking likely Cougars won a corner after William Farnes shot was headed wide and when Ifield were unable to clear a perfectly executed cross from Jack Evans the ball fell to the right person as far as Cougars were concerned and the in form Thomas Fitzpatrick smashed the ball into the goal to give Cougars a 4 – 3 lead with the full time whistle looming.
I cant recall anything that happened the last two minutes but it appeared we had mastered quantum-physics as time seemed to stand still - but when the final whistle did go it was to a massive cheer from players and spectators alike and Cougars had earnt the win they wanted and deserved.

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