U14 B Team Cup ESFA PlayStation Schools' Cup Final - UPDATED
On the 21st May the yr9 'B' team played in the ESFA National Cup Final at The Hawthornes, home of West Bromwich Albion F.C. The match was against Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School from Liverpool.
Due to us being allocated a 9.30am kick off we travelled up the night before so that the team could benefit of a good night's sleep in preparation for the big match.
As we were the first final of the day the boys had the privilege of using the changing rooms at the ground rather than the academy facility adjacent to the ground. Excitement levels were high amongst both players and staff as we stepped out onto the pristine playing surface for the pre match warm up.
Sadly, the first half was not one of the best performances this season from Hurstmere.Cardinal Heenan certainly had the better of the play and were quicker to the ball. However, with the score being 2-1 to Cardinal Heenan at half-time we were still in with a chance.
After the half time team talk from myself and Mr Eiffert and some tactical changes, the second half was a very different story. Hurstmere were sharper all over the pitch. The tactical changes and substitutions throughout the second half was a very different story. Hurstmere were sharper all over the pitch. The tactical changes and substitutions throughout the half working better than we could ever have expected. Despite a totally dominant second half, we could not find the net and the score remained at 2-1 on the final whistle.
Congratulations and hand shakes were exchanged with the staff and pupils of Cardinal Heenan High School at full time. This' despite our boys being absolutely devastated by the result. One excellent piece of news during the presentation ceremony was that Ted Cootes, one of our centre backs, had been voted as Man of the Match on social media. He was awarded a silver salver and a Playstation voucher.
Despite the result, the team had a memorable experience. One that will hopefully not be a once in a lifetime event! After a semi final defeat last in Yr8 and a final defeat this year the teams' aim is to reach the final and win in Yr10.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the squad for their efforts. They have been a credit to the school and themselves at all times. Summed up by the way that they graciously accepted defeat at The Hawthornes and conducted themselves impeccably. It has been an absolute pleasure to be their team manager and I am already looking forward to next season.
Thanks also go to Mr Eiffert who ably assisted me on the day and Mrs Bennett, Mr Robinson and Mr Harwood who were VIP guests of the ESFA at the final.
Here's to even greater success next season!
Andy Jones - Yr9 'B' Team manager