Match report: Idle FC 0 – 3 Ealandians FC Reserves

Posted on November 13, 2017


Match report: Idle FC 0 – 3 Ealandians FC Reserves

Yorkshire Amateur League Division 1 – Saturday 11th November 2017

Full-time: Idle FC 0 – 3 Ealandians FC Res.

MOTM: A. Irving

Following last week’s disappointment in the cup, it was back to the league for Idle against one of last season’s foes, Ealandians FC Reserves.  Both games against the Elland-based side were tough fixtures last year and Idle had to be at the top of their game if they were to come away with the win.

There were a couple of tactical changes to the line-up this week with some regular players missing. Idle started the game with an unfamiliar formation in a 4-3-2-1 Christmas tree, reminiscent to Terry Venables England side prior to Euro ’96.

Aaron Irving was the sole striker supported by Ben Baker and Jack Strudwick in the attacking midfield roles, this meant Ryan Mitchell dropped back to make a central midfield three with Carl Dawson and Tom Simonett. This was a clear move away from the wing play Idle were accustomed to. The back-four only had one change with Danny Rosconie returning to the side in place of Carl Brown.

Prior to kick-off, there was a minutes silence to mark Armistice Day and remember those who’ve lost their lives in conflict which was impeccably observed by both teams.

Minutes silence

Despite a relatively strong line-up from the home team, it was Ealandians who started the better side with a clear desire to avenge last season’s defeat, pressing hard as a team from the first whistle and forcing Idle mistakes. The quick start clearly caught Idle cold with two goals in the first 10 minutes from the Ealandians striker who capitalised on a couple of early errors to finish clinically. It would be an uphill struggle from then on.

Idle did eventually grow into the game despite the away sides early dominance and a couple of chances went begging with Simonett hitting the bar from close range and Connor Halligan heading over from Rosconie’s deep free-kick. Idle continued to be patient and keep the ball where they could but were unable to force a goal to get back into the game. Idle went in at the half-time whistle 0-2 down, dispirited and bitterly disappointed with the performance.

Rob Brook reverted to 4-4-2 for the second half, moving Jack Strudwick and Mitchell out to the wings with Baker and Irving forming a partnership upfront.

The change had a positive effect with Idle seeing a lot more of the ball in the second half and creating a lot more chances with Simonett breaking forward from central midfield to support the attack. Baker and Irving battled tirelessly and did well to keep the ball under-pressure from a resilient Ealandians defence.  Mitchell and Jack Strudwick on the wings were also giving the opposition full-backs much more to think about with their pace and creativity.

Once again chances came and went with Simonett unfortunate with couple of opportunities in the box and Baker and Irving forcing saves from the goalkeeper. A couple of substitutions were made in the second half with Simonett coming off for Lee Cookson who slotted in at centre-back with Halligan moving into central midfield. Chris Heald also returned to the fray for Idle replacing Strudwick on the wing. Idle’s delivery from wide areas was certainly much improved from previous games and was causing problems for Ealandians but the home team weren’t able to capitalise.

With Idle coming up short in the goals department, Ealandians managed to break and from their only real chance of the second half (minus a cross from the left which hit the bar), the number 10 completed his hatrick with a smart finish. After dribbling his way into the box, the Idle defence had pressured well and managed to cut-off the square pass, however, the striker saw a gap at the near post and following a clever drag-back managed to flick the ball into the space to complete his hatrick.

It was pretty much game-over for Idle after that with Ealandians battling hard to keep their clean sheet and take all 3 points from the game. The full-time whistle brought an end to a torrid game for Idle. Full-time: Idle FC 0 – 3 Ealandians FC Reserves.

Overall, it was another disappointing week for Idle succumbing to their first league defeat of the season and failing to score for the first time in what seems like an age. With the quarter final of the Bradford Cup coming up next week, there’s certainly improvements to be had.

By Jamie Allen

Posted in: Football