Naas AFC 0 – Dunboyne AFC 1. Our second win in three weeks. 🙂 We’d left Dunboyne around 12 with four cars travelling. We barely made it for the kick off at 1 but thankfully the ref was sound and didn’t give us any hassle. Only one problem though, one car was missing with two players. He was at least 15 mins away so I’d only have ten to start with. Shite. I could put one of them straight in when they arrived though. Let’s just hope we don’t concede until we’re back at full strength. A break down the wing, a shot that just dips over their keeper and we’re one nil up. “Is this actually happening?” I thought. Indeed it was. The lost lads arrived and were raring to go. We had chances, Naas had chances but we played well as a team and held on. I punched the air at the final whistle. I really could get used to this.
I’ve set the side out as strong as I can. Away to Castleknock Celtic and we haven’t played them yet this season. The last time we were here it was a close game. The first half has been even enough. They seem to be at our level in terms of ability to play it on the deck.
Crap, we’re gone one nil down ten minutes into the second half. The defense are playing well but we’ve got caught with a quick break down the wing and a low shoot. I’m not too worried though. There’s been chances for both sides, we’ll get an opportunity to get level. The opportunity falls to ‘Mittsy’. The keeper saves it initially, shite the chance is gone, nope he’s caught the rebound well from a tight angle and it’s in. The parents are celebrating but I’m shouting at the lads to concentrate. It’s one thing to get level in a game, it’s another to sustain it, I’ve learned that, especially with this team. They’re listening though.
A one-on-one with our keeper is saved. Christ this is nerve wracking stuff but we’re getting opportunities. A break down the wing, their defender puts it out for a corner. We could get something from this. Jack swings it over, the defender only knocks it on and Adam connects with a volley from 6 yards. I was fucking right. Beautiful. Two one up and three minutes to go……there’s the final whistle. This I’ll remember forever. My first win in two years as a manager.
4-2 up with fifteen minutes to go. We’d been under pressure for a certain amount of the game but took out chances when they came our way. Time’s ticking on and I’m thinking that we may well have our first victory here (well, when I’ve been present on the sideline anyway).
4-3. Shite, we’re getting tired now but we still have a goal cushion. Great saves from the keeper, we may well hang on.
4-4. Oh no, they’re starting to fall back too much and the other team are lobbing balls into the box. A header brings Donard level. Still a draw would be a decent result considering the amount of saves the keeper has made.
4-5. Another deep ball into the box, the keeper makes contact with the ball but it goes into the roof of the net.
Jesus, when will I ever get some luck. They showed heart, commitment and bottle this week after last weeks drubbing. The result will never be important to me in the long run, I know it’s not about that. Today of all days though I wanted a win. Not to be. Onwards.
For those of you who don’t know, I train and manage a football team for Dunboyne AFC. We’re the fourth team at the under 12s age group. To be honest, I’ve never really felt I’m good at it but I’ve stuck with it for the past few years. It’s quite difficult to get a result with the side we have as most of them haven’t come up through years of playing ball. They’re the kids who like the game and are enthusiastic. I suppose that’s why I stick with it.
We had a game this morning out in Knocklyn. We lost 10-0. They were all over us from minute one. I couldn’t believe it, this was supposed to be a side at the same level as us. We’d come out last year and gone away feeling very disappointed having conceeded in the last five minutes and lost one nil. This side was very different from the one we had played. To be honest, I’m convinced at least a few of their players were from the higher teams at that age group. They were just so much better than our own lads. I felt sorry for them since getting a drubbing like that would demoralise anyone. My goalkeeper had tears in his eyes after walking off the pitch.
Had our worst defeat as a team last weekend when we lost 10-0 to Rangers CYM. Immensely frustrating to watch. We didn’t pass the ball, defend, hold on to it when we had it and generally just played dismally. We have a home fixture this week which I hope will raise their spirits. We certainly can’t have a repeat performance like that.