Thornes FC vs Campion AFC Dev
Date: 12th September 2015
Venue: Queen’s Drive Playing Fields
Referee: Terry Barrett
Man of the Match: Josh Ludford
Milo BrownJonathan Moses
Karl Renardson (c)
Louis Etienne (on 80 for Metcalfe)
Usman Hussain (on 54 for Omojola)
Kristan Gordon (on 45 for Barry)
Campion Get Stung But Show Character
It has to be said that there was a real buzz around the Campion squad as they came off the back of a good cup win against Wibsey FC.
With good numbers available, a full complement was taken to Ossett to Thornes FC, a place that offered little more than a draw last season.
Nestled next to the motorway the Thornes ground was blustering, and despite a good deal of rain in the morning, offered a hard surface with a slick wet surface.
Missing captain Carl Trenerry and centre back Jaden Powell, manager Mark Palfreeman chose to line-up with three at the back, giving Yasir Qadim his first start of the season alongside Lincoln Donaldson and Paul Davidson in a 3-5-2 formation.
But it quickly seemed as if it may have been the wrong move. Although Campion looked good going forward with the reunited partnership of Josh Ludford and Chris Hellewell, defensively it wasn’t quite as good and Thornes took an early lead through a soft goal.
The good work offensively paid off as Ludford was caught in the box offering Hellewell the chance to equalise from the spot within ten minutes of going behind.
And yet the game was to sway again as the wind gave a helping hand to a corner which floated over a helpless Karl Renardson in goal and Aaron Metcalfe at the back post.
Luckily Hellewell had got his goalscoring ‘mo-jo’ back and out of nothing struck a shot into the top right hand corner of the goal leaving the goalkeeper helpless to once again level the match.
After a Thornes third Palfreeman changed the system from the 3-5-2 which was stretching the defence and flattering a largely average home side. Instead Aaron Metcalfe slotted in at right back in a more organised 4-4-2 formation.
And the Campion Development squad faced their first battle against adversity as Thornes scored again and then made it a two goal deficit with an opportunistic lob from 20 yards.
The prospect of going into half time two goals down was a daunting one, but one that was prevented by Josh Ludford. Finding some space 25 yards out, Ludford go the ball and hit a fiercely struck shot which hit the back of the net before the keeper had the opportunity to move.
Half time saw Kris Gordon replace Sadio Barry in a further attempt to solidify the defence and it appeared to work as Thornes had few sniffs on goal in the second half. But one of the few opportunities they did have threatened to put the game out of reach of the visitors. The opposition number nine got beyond the defence and rounded keeper Renardson, only for the ball to be snatched away by a desperate lunge tackle by a desperate Paul Davidson. It was as testament to Davidson’s determination that he continued to track back and forced a corner from seemingly a nailed on goal. As good as any strike that had been made at the other end.
Aside that that opportunity the game was largely dominated by Campion’s offence. Ludford’s drive and determination won the ball from a defender and his weighted through ball allowed Hellewell to make it 5-4.
From there the goals continued to come, with Hellewell grabbing a fourth, Ludford a second and Usman Hussain making it seven offering some fresh legs to replace Emmanuel Omojola.
By the end of the game the heart had been stolen from Thornes FC who struggled to get close to campion as they retained the ball and created significant chances. It looked as if they were cruising whereas reality saw a significant fight offered by Thornes for a large part of the game.