hrewsbury Junior Colts
(Moffat, Hearle, Lewis)
Royals came away from the Meadow today with the points and will be
hugely relieved that they did so, after a below par first half
performance. In winning this game they maintain the pressure on the
top two teams in the league. Coming from behind twice, their second
half performance was much improved and enough to see off their
opponents, with a winning goal 3 minutes from time.
The first half saw the Royals playing with the wind behind their
backs and they started with a 3-1-4-2 formation. Despite the strong
breeze, they failed to take advantage and the 3 man defence
struggled with the pace of the Shrewsbury strikers. Shrewsbury took
control of the midfield and were able to provide plenty of service
to their forwards.
Shrewsbury went ahead on one of these very occasions. Winning the
ball in midfield they shrugged of the Royals' challenges and some
neat passing saw their striker with the easiest of chances to make
the score 0-1.
Royals battled to get back into the game and came close on 2 or 3
occasions, the best chance being when Al-Houbani broke out of
defence and used his speed down the right wing. As he cut in towards
goal, he was fouled just outside the area, preventing him from
getting his shot in. Hearle sent over the resulting free kick, but
it was cleared by the Shrewsbury defence.
Royals' equaliser came from Moffat 10 minutes from half time. He
received the ball half way inside the Shrewsbury half, from a
quickly taken Green free kick. Running forward he took it past the
defender and with goalkeeper approaching hit it hard and high enough
into the top of the goal.
Shortly before half time a lapse in concentration gave Shrewsbury
the lead again. The ball was won down the right side of the field
and a cross put in from a tight angle. With Keugler already
committed to going towards the approaching winger, the cross went
over his head and the Shrewsbury striker had an easy task to head
At half time Leech replaced Weynberg and Agnew replaced Lewis to
change the formation to 4-1-4-1. Royals seemed happier playing with
the 4 man defence and started playing with more confidence in
Hearle and Fielding ran tirelessly down their wings and also
contributed to defending when necessary. Smith came close after 12
minutes when he saw his shot well saved by the Shrewsbury keeper.
However it was Hearle who got the equaliser after a pass from Moffat
found him in some space. He advanced towards the goal as as the
keeper came out to narrow the angle he chipped the ball over his
head and into the goal.
Royals were gaining confidence now and much of the time was spent in
their opponents half. Shrewsbury did have one excellent chance to
take the lead again and with Keugler beaten, Green came to the
rescue heading off the line.
Lewis was re-introduced with 15 minutes left, to replace Smith as
the sole striker.
With the final whistle approaching it looked as though the points
would be shared. However with 3 minutes to go Lewis scored a
wonderful goal. The ball was put through on the right hand side and
the Royals' striker raced against the opposing defender to get to
it. He just managed to get a shot in from a tight angle and the ball
went over the keeper's head into the goal. His shot resulted in a
blow to the head so he was taken off as a precaution.
A tough game, against a physical side and Royals can be pleased with
their efforts today, particularly in the second half.
Team: Keugler, Green, Al-Houbani, Baker, Weynberg
(Leech 35), Hearle, Moffat, Miles, Fielding, Lewis (Agnew 35), Smith