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Mixed results for Titans against two Falcon sides
Report by London Titans FC
London Titans managed to slay one Falcon side last weekend (Sun 28 Oct) in the Sportsman League, but a more familiar Falcon foe took the honours in the GFSN League tie.
Our Sportsmans (first XI) side faced Northcote Falcons in a league tie at Roehampton playing fields, with kick off at 10am.
With one player at a completely different venue, Tezza slotted into centreback alongside Sheila, with Schuerch and Serge playing in the full back roles.
The midfield line-up remained the same as last week with pacy wingers Gamsu & Felton flanking Beal and Luka in the middle.
Paul Tickner made a welcome return to the side upfront, alongside Matty Baker.
Titans started the match in lively fashion, playing some neat football and carving out a number of chances.
Easty put us ahead early on, with a well-taken header from a Matty Baker corner.
However we lost concentration and allowed Northcote a route back into the match.
A failed clearance lead to a goalmouth scramble, with Nortcote hitting the bar then subsequently putting away the rebound.
Fortune favoured the Titans midway through the half. Tickner ran on to an excellent through-ball, and his shot was adjudged to have crossed the line by the referee. It was a generous decision by a poorly-positioned ref.
However a sense of panic affected the Titans as we approached half-time and rushed clearances lead to a succession of pressure and chances for Northcote.
An excellent opposition corner from the left wasn’t dealt with by our defence, and the ball fell kindly for a Northcote player in the six yard box to smash home the easiest of chances.
At half-time, manager Ed and coach Maughan were perplexed (and rightly angry) that we had twice surrendered a lead to an obviously inferior opposition.
With Northcote having already fieldied their solitary substitute we knew they would tire quickly. We vowed to continue playing our football (as much as the pitch would allow) and exploiting the flanks.
The second half was a more one-sided affair.
Another excellent Matty B corner was headed home by Beal, Tickner added a second (this time definitely over the line!) and Ollie completed the scoring with a late finish.
It was a much need win for our Sportsman side after a succession of defeats, leaving us in 9th place in the 13-team table. We must continue this form in our next game next Sunday against Real Northern ‘B’, who are similiarly placed in the table.
GFSN League: Titans 0-4 Falcons
Later that day, our second XI faced bitter foes London Falcons in the GFSN League at Hampton & Richmond Borough FC.
In what was always going to be a difficult encounter against a side gunning for the title, we managed to repel wave after wave of attacks from the visitors until the 40th minute.
Sadly, some admirable defensive work eventually came undone and Falcons took the lead from a low shot from the edge of the box.
In the second half Falcons went on to score three more times, and in all honesty they deserved such a comprehensive win.
We can take heart from a number of factors.
Firstly, we also should not read too much into this result. This was Falcon’s first team, and for 40 admirable minutes, we contained them well under immense pressure. That is a credit to our side.
Secondly, many of our players are still adapting to playing at this standard, but the level of improvement is exceptional. All players must endeavour to continue this rate of improvement – and if they can, results will surely come our way.
A word of warning, however:
In previous seasons, at least two teams have been relegated from the top division. Whilst the format for next season’s league has yet to be finalised, we should consider ourselves now in ‘relegation battle’. (we’re currently 5th of 6 teams).
Leicester are just a single point ahead of us, in fourth, with Brighton six points behind.
Our next two league games are against these teams, therefore it’s vital we get maximum points - starting with Brighton this Sunday (4th Nov).
Earning 6 points from these two home games will give ourselves the best possible platform going into the second half of the season.
We face some tricky away ties after New Year, so these games before Christmas are extremely important.