Year 8 finally came out on top in a slobberknocker of a Semi Final, winning 5-4 vs Preston Manor on Friday night.
Year 8 finished top of the league, and with the top 4 into the finals we expected a tough challenge from Preston Manor. However, we didn’t expect Paulo to have pull off a stunning save in the opening minute! Fortunately, Andrei hammered home the opener, near post, from Stefan’s slide-rule pass to put us 1-0 ahead after 3 minutes.
Preston Manor deployed two phenomenal strikers, one who combined finesse with brute strength and the over who was extremely tricky. The former smashed the crossbar, and at the other end, Stefan’s cross to the back-post was not quite perfect and Shyan couldn’t double our lead.
Staying on the front foot, Bilal had a good shot after a fine team move that started with Marius, before Preston Manor took the lead from a corner. With minutes to go until half-time, Preston scored again and should have had a penalty, which put the game in jeopardy at the interval.
Determined to turn things around, Shyan played in Andrei who pulled back to Bilal who hit a laser-guided shot into the bottom corner from 20 yards. It was 2-2 but Preston Manor pulled ahead again from the centre!
A foul on Marius only served to pee off the midfielder. Marius took the game by the scruff off the neck, picking the ball up deep in our own half and driving full length before unleashing Andrei, whose pass to Stefan saw us equalise at 3-3.
Shyan should have given us the lead, when a pullback from Stefan saw her wallop a shot off the crossbar from 10 yards out. Bilal and Abdul then won some vital tackles, and the loose ball broke to Abderrahman who played a brilliant pass to Shyan. Shyan pulled back to Stefan for the simplest of finishes and we were finally in the ascendency. Shyan made it 5 after good work from Kanosan.
There was still time for Preston Manor to make it an uncomfortable finish, getting 1 goal back and whistling some fine freekicks just over Paulo’s goal.
All told, Year 8 won the match 5-4. Man of the Match was Bilal with a very close second to Marius.
We progress to the final but will need to up our game if we want to challenge the winner of QPCS vs Kingsbury in the other semi.