Campion AFC Dev vs Overthorpe SC
Date: 10th October 2015
Venue: AA Van Hire Stadium
Referee: Mr. Stuart Marsden
Man of the Match: Aaron Metcalfe
Carl Trenerry (c)
Overthorpe overstretched by Campion loss
Although Campion Development squad had started the season well, there were two questions marks that lingered over the side as they headed into a home tie against Overthorpe Sports Club. Not only had the majority of points come away from home, but with the exception of the win at Honley FC, they had also been against sides that were mid-table or lower. In fact only two weeks earlier when DRAM came to town then it seemed as if the Manningham based outfit had been found out.
Following that defeat, the management team had decided to employ a more attacking 4-3-3 formation than the pragmatic style shown against DRAM, in the hopes that they could take the game to the opposition.
The return of Paul Davidson shored up the defence and allowed Macauley Haley, who had impressed in recent weeks, to keep his place at right back. Then an energetic and busy midfield three of Louis Etienne, Damien Hields and Aaron Metcalfe had Tom Bentham just in front of them and Chris Hellewell and Josh Ludford in attack.
In the first ten minutes it seemed as if perhaps it was a little too ambitious. A typically sluggish start saw an Overthorpe attack which went across the box and met by an Overthorpe attacker who had stole a march on Paul Davidson and clipped it back across the box for an easy finish for Daniel Marshall.
It was indicative of the opening twenty minutes where Campion struggled to get into their game and Overthorpe had their chances. Even hitting the cross bar as a ball sailed over a helpless Renardson in the Campion goal.
But of those chances only one was converted and it allowed Campion to remain within touching distance as they began to improve. In fact it was Ludford this time that rattled the bar, with a strike from 30 yards that was smartly tipped on to the woodwork by the keeper.
As the side settled they played more football and the momentum switched to the home side who were getting more possession in the Overthorpe half and looking more threatening.
A good move down the left hand side between Aaron Metcalfe, Paul Davidson and eventually Josh Ludford saw Ludford gain a yard in the penalty area and smash the ball past a helpless goalkeeper and square the game. It was probably deserved in terms of possession and probing but the side still felt a little lucky going in for half time level.
In the second half the dynamic of the game changed somewhat. The midfield began to dominate more as the opposition tired. The passing which had so often gone astray in the first half was better and the pressing was higher and eventually reaped rewards. Tom Bentham’s tireless running up top put pressure on defenders and a poor ball from the left full back across his box was intercepted by Bentham who coolly played in Ludford for his second.
The goal drew confidence from Campion and its manner seemed to make Overthorpe heads drop. The confidence was also getting the best out of the formation, giving the freedom to push forward as a team and increase the pressure. As always seems to be the case recently, it was anchored by Jaden Powell and Carl Trenerry who once again forged a solid partnership at the back both putting in excellent performances.
But the game was won in midfield. All three of the players grafting both as a defensive shield and starting attacks. Aaron Metcalfe in particular seemed to be everywhere, no sooner was he breaking up play outside his own box than he was playing a precise through ball for the strikers.
It was Metcalfe’s persistence that earned the second goal. Carrying the ball at the defence his skill and tenacity combined to not only get himself in the area, but then come out with the ball past the defence and calmly slot it home past the goalkeeper.
In truth at 3-1 and with Overthorpe tiring the game was seemingly done. Despite the odd probing attack and ambitious push in attack Overthorpe rarely troubled, and it always felt like Campion had an opportunity on the break.
It was, in the end, a confident and cool performance from a side who looked every bit contenders at the right end of the table.