When the going gets tough……… well, we knew it wasn’t going to be easy against a classy Oxford side.
We started brightly enough before they got properly into their stride and forced them to clear a shot off the line. Nigel strove manfully up front, ably assisted by Gordon, and in one of our rare attacks he had the indignity of being shoulder-charged by a defender who had dropped his stick.
With no access to VAR in Stockley Park to debate a possible card, a stiff talking to had to do. But gradually their waves of pressure began to build and despite some heroics from Craig in goal, definitely our man of the match, Oxford scored a well worked goal.
Still only one down at half time, against a side that won 15-0 the previous week, we weren’t disheartened. The midfield continued to run their socks off, the defence defended stubbornly with Mark in superb form, but when an Oxford shot looped up off the keeper’s pads unstoppably into the net, our heads began to drop. A third followed not long afterwards and all that was left was to have a very sociable late afternoon in the bar.
Thanks to the spectators who turned out to cheer us on although Brent may have been more on a spying mission for Haslemere. South Coast next week so let’s hope the bracing sea air will invigorate our play.
Congratulations to Chloe Roberts (a very occasional Gondolier player) who is getting married to Josh (another more occasional Gondolier goalkeeper) in South Africa.