Herts Senior County League Prem Division
Eagles maintained their recent high scoring record with an emphatic victory over high flying Cuffley. The game was played in difficult conditions on a heavy pitch, long uncut grass and in a blustering wind, so as a result large periods of the game were scrappy with only isolated flashes of good football from the two teams.
Eagles started slowly with Cuffley making the early running. Eagles keeper Dan Goad was soon in action when he managed to get a hand to the ball as it flashed across the Eagles penalty area, diverting it from the feet on an on rushing forward at the far post. Eagles gradually upped their game and Ian Thorne shot into the corner of the home net from 15 yards only to have the goal ruled out for offside. Eagles defence was always vulnerable to the fast direct approach as was nearly caught out when Paul Mc Gennity was second best in a chase down the centre of the field and Goad had to save the low shot with his feet. Against the run of play Eagles went ahead after 20 minutes . Cuffley failed to control a low cross from the left, Sam Gittings shot from close range hit a defender covering on the goal line, and Jamie Farrar bundled to ball into the net off the legs of a defender, with Gittings making sure it had crossed the line
Eagles when further ahead on the half hour when Shane Carthy was flattened from behind just inside the penalty area, and Gittings sweetly struck the penalty low into the corner of the net. Cuffley wilted and soon after McGennity bundled the ball into the net at the far post from a corner by Anthony Geary. It was soon 4-0 to the Eagles when Thorne was left unmarked a few yards inside the Cuffley penalty area and shot low into the far corner of the net.
Cufley soon hit back with a good goal scored from 8 yards after a counter swift attack caught the Eagles defence too far upfield, and just before half time they got a second after Goad parried a shot, but the ball ran loose to 2 unmarked Cuffley players. The ball was cleanly dispatched into the net giving Goad no chance .
After half time Cuffley soon scored again as Eagles defence failed to clear a cross from the left and the ball was sidefooted home from 6 yards. Cuffley then enjoyed a spell of dominance as Eagles struggled to string passes together. In another Cuffley break down the centre with only Goad to beat the ball was taken too wide and eventually Thorne managed to scramble the ball clear for a corner.
Eagles then made a series of substitutions which changed the whole direction of the game. After 65 minutes Cuffley failed to properly clear a cross from a lively John Coley, the ball was returned to the centre by Thorne and Shane Carthy smashed it into the net off a post from the edge of the area, the best goal of the game .Cuffley should themselves have scored but with the goal gaping after Eagles failed to clear a cross the ball was hit wide of a post from close to the penalty spot.
Eagles wrapped up the game when John Coley powered home a bullet header from a cross by Carthy. They could have scored more when McGennity headed a corner over the crossbar after being left unmarked at the far post, and sub Charlie Black was put clear after a surging run by Carthy, only for his goal bound shot to be deflected wide by a covering defender. An excellent game to watch for the neutrals but not for the respective team managers!