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George Spencer Academy 1 - Chilwell School 2

Swans weather the storm at George Spencer

‘The more difficult the victory, the greater the happiness in winning’ - Pele

Chilwell School’s ‘golden generation’ of footballers continues to impress in this unprecedented season of success. 

This time it was the turn of our industrious Y10s to book their passage into the semi-finals of the South Notts Cup against our local rivals GSA.

‘Storm Eunice’ had left her mark on the GSA pitches, meaning that we were forced to play on the only playable surface unaffected by the inclement weather. Unfortunately it soon became apparent that this surface was not conducive to the playing of ‘the beautiful game’ but more akin to an old fashioned contest observed in the ‘pre Premier League’ era.

The Y10s were without their normal keeper, with year nine Lucas Collins receiving a late call up to step into the breach. We were also without Nottingham Forest starlet Jordan Willows, meaning a chance for Jack Payne to play in midfield and Byron Smurthwaite to play centre-half alongside the ‘Goliath like’ Archie Greenhaigh.

The year ten set up with a 4-5-1 formation defensively, transitioning into a fluid 4-3-3 in offense. Max Long at left back in particular given licence to charge forward, with Notts County’s Lewis Jackson playing at CDM, being asked to fill the gap whenever our defenders drove forward up the field.

Early in the first half, Payne had his first opportunity to strike on goal, with a direct free kick around 30 yards out. Payne hit an absolute ‘Wurlitzer’ that flew into the GSA net to give us a vital lead. 

Kein, playing as a lone striker, worked tirelessly throughout the game and was rewarded with a well taken goal after an insightful through ball by the excellent Jackson.

The second half saw the expected resurgence of GSA and it was only through the tireless efforts of all players that we were able to hang on to our lead until the closing minutes. With about 5 minutes left to play, GSA scored a scrappy goal that caused a nervous ending for the Chilwell defence, with Jamie Anderson again excelling at right back.

Jackson was unfortunate not to win a penalty in the final minute, before GSA were equally unfortunate not to grab a last minute equaliser from the last kick of the game.

The game was played in an excellent spirit by both teams, but I think it is fair to say that Chilwell were in the end worthy winners based on their outstanding collective work rate.

This was not a game for the football purists, but certainly one that will live long in my memory of all involved.

A massive thank you to Lucas Collins for stepping in last minute to play in goal and to Mr Fendick for accompanying the team and also for running the line.

Mr Lodge’s MOM: Jack Payne (Great goal. Fantastic work rate and outrageous ‘rabona’ pass.)

Mr Fendick’s MOM: Leo Richardson (Our skipper led through example, with another gutsy display in the centre of midfield.)