Holmer Green v Gerrards Cross
By Alan Lever
Goals evade gutsy Greens
Holmer Green v Gerrards Cross
Sunday 15 th October
Holmer Green were hoping they could continue their winning ways today on the back of a 2 -1 victory away to Taplow, in which new lad Elliot Lever bagged a brace. It was perfect footballing weather today, overcast, mild and dry with a slight dew on the grass. Sulphur coloured leaves on the trees overlooking the pitch signalled the end of the warm weather as a pair of Red Kites hung on probably the last thermals of the year.
The Greens made a positive start with Thomas Martin and Rory Lawson linking well, but an instant response from Gerrards Cross saw keeper Jude Jeffery pull off a great one handed save low to his left. GX then attacked centrally finding their men well in good shooting positions leaving the Greens relieved to see a blocked ricochet over the bar. The GX number 11 looking tricky and intelligent in their build up play. Although our lads were finding feet with passes they were being closed down instantly by several of the opposition at once. As ever this Holmer Green team were solid in their challenges and their work rate was high. The white-haired referee who wouldn't have looked out of place in a Martin Scorsese movie with his stern expression and imposing stature, stamped his authority on the spectators and the players early, having cause to speak to both, leaving no doubt who was the boss. Again GX pressed, getting the ball to feet centrally on the edge of our 18 yard area, but HG
defend stoutly. Sustained GX pressure then for a couple of minutes ending in a corner that glanced the top of the Holmer crossbar. GX grew in confidence and tried to dance through the Holmer defence who dealt with the threat at the second attempt. Then from a throw on the left, Lever followed his own header into the box and shot low and left only to be denied by an astute GX keeper. Pressure from Holmer Green, Wood winning the ball in midfield, decent passes follow with Martin to Coyle and on to striker James Alexander who needed no invitation to and shoot, hitting one from the corner of the box which went close to the bottom left stick. Seconds later a skilful turn and shot by Coyle is blocked and rebounds to Alexander who shoots more powerfully, this time inches wide of the upright. Plenty of spirit on show for the Greens but decent chances were elusive. Pep talk type shouts from the GX coach were to no avail as the Greens started to threaten now, bolstered by two excellent saving blocks from Marcus. Try as they might though the score stayed frustratingly at 0-0. But then Coyle side steps his opponent on the edge of the box, his shot looking for all the world like it would find the top left corner of the net but sails past the post taking a coat of paint with it. GX respond though, finding their striker from a long ball approach who some how got the ball past keeper Jeffery the ball dribbling toward the Holmer goal but cleared of the line. Then an accurate left footed in-swinging corner from GX was met by their captain with a deft placed volley into the right hand bottom corner of the Holmer Green net. 1 - 0 the half ended.
Joe Richardson summoned the first excitement of the second half heading just wide of the far post from a Coyle corner. Unfortunately the next cheer was for a second GX goal, it came from a long pass out wide to the right that was crossed in with pace and met by the excellent GX
number 11 who leapt and volleyed the ball home with the outside of the boot, 2-0. It was mostly a bitty second half, Ollie stood out with good work in defence and there was some eye catching play on the right wing from Euan, who battled bravely and was unlucky not to free striker Alexander several times. In much of the second half, route one football seemed to be the popular tactic, the keepers took it in turns kicking out of their hands, launching the ball long, seeking out their respective front men with a single pass. It was Holmer who had the best chance in the remaining minutes with a corner swung in from Coyle met with a beautiful diving header from Ollie, the GX keeper set in stone as the ball hit the post.... agony. Neither side could increase their score-line though, final score 0-2
It was a frustrating afternoon for Holmer Green who weren’t lacking desire and who did create chances. The opposition chances though were more clear cut.