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Royals Match Report

Royals shine at the Meadow
Royals 7-2 Market Drayton Tigers (League, 25-01-09)
(Moffat 2, Hearle, Fielding, Lewis, Leech, Weynberg)

Royals built on last week's victory today, as they overcame Market Drayton Tigers in muddy conditions at Russell's Meadow. Heavy overnight rain had made the pitch sticky and susceptible to cutting up, but Royals dealt with the conditions well and outplayed their opponents for much of the game.

When the two teams had met earlier in the season a lack of passion and spirit was cited as the cause for a 6-3 defeat. Today however the Royals wanted revenge. They played with passion and courage and wanted the ball and this showed in their play.

Sticking to the 4-5-1 formation saw Lewis as the sole striker, with usual striker Smith making his debut at left back. Royals had a full squad of 14 available to choose from for the first time in a while.

Moffat scored the first for the Royals, 10 minutes into the game, after being set up by a pass from Fielding. The game had been pretty evenly matched up until this but the Royals got the break they needed.

Royals second goal was something special. Fielding won the ball on the left side of the pitch. Seeing Hearle unmarked about 30 yards out he sent a long ball over to the other side of the pitch. Hearle controlled the ball, looked up and sent a rocket of a shot into the back of the net. A goal of almost Ronnie Radford proportions!

Just before half time Watts replaced Agnew at right back and then at half time Weynberg replaced Miles, Baker replaced Lewis and some re-shuffling took place.

Sometimes a re-shuffle can affect a team's performance, but today it didn't. Those players introduced fitted in seamlessly and the Royals were enjoying some of the best football they had played for a long while.

Royals third goal was scored by Fielding. Five minutes into the second half he outpaced the Market Drayton defence and took the ball round the approaching keeper to score his second in as many games.

Market Drayton were by no means a poor team and they too had their chances. Royals defence held up well for the most part, until 9 minutes into the second half, when they found the back of the net with a coolly struck finish past the diving Keugler.

Royals regained their margin shortly afterwards when a penalty was awarded for a push in the back on Leech, after a corner. After 2 previously missed penalties, Moffat decided he would have a go and he sent a well taken penalty into the far corner of the goal.

Leech made it 5-1, 10 minutes later when Smith overlapped with Baker, and sent a high cross over. The keeper was unable to hold on to the ball and Leech pounced to tap home from close range.

Royals 6th came from Lewis, after he sidestepped his defender and calmly shot past the keeper into the goal.

With full time approaching Royals scored a 7th. A break out of defence after a Market Drayton corner, saw Weynberg clear the ball to Lewis. Realising that Lewis would need help he carried on running up the field to support. Lewis cut in towards goal and shot against the keeper's legs, only for Weynberg to nip in and fire home the rebound.

There was time for the re-start and with Royals still celebrating, Market Drayton scored their second. Some dazzling footwork from their no 7 saw him beat 3 Royals players and send a pass through splitting the Royals' defence. Their striker ran on to the ball and another great strike saw Keugler unable to keep the ball out of the net.

A great result for the Royals against a team who had been on a great run recently. Royals were back to their best, and must now look to take this into their next game.

Team: Keugler, Agnew (Watts 25), Green, Al-Houbani, Smith, Miles (Weynberg 35), Hearle, Moffat, Leech, Fielding, Lewis (Baker 35)


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