VMFC1 v Duffy's FC
Tuesday 5 August 2014
Village Manchester faced their second friendly of the season on 5 August as they faced Duffys at Albert Park in Salford.
As in the previous games of the season so far, the club took the opportunity to give a few new players their first game in a Village kit.
Despite suffering a finger injury at the weekend, Baker bravely assumed his position between the sticks and Clayton and Curtis assisted the returning-from-injury Stevens and new boy McGivern in defence. Wilson and another new guy Wain took up residence in midfield with Johnson and Holmes helping Reece and Hardern with the attacking responsibilities.
Kidd, Nelson, Sal and new Aussie import Van Keimpema took their place on the bench.
Duffys are in the division below the first team and they had a strong season as they finished fourth in a competitive nine team league.
Village started well and Johnson, following on from his man-of-the-match performance against Trowbridge Tigers at the weekend, shot just wide within the first five minutes.
This gave Duffys an early wake up call and they took the game by the scruff of the neck in the next 15 minutes - a period in which they would take the lead.
Village were given a warning with 10 minutes gone when a Duffys striker headed over when they really should have scored. Their next attempt was on target as Baker was forced to rush out to block a shot from a chance that was created from a missed Village header from a ball over the top.
It was third time unlucky for Village though as Duffys took the lead a minute later as their number 11 curled an exquisite shot from the number two's lay off. 0-1
Holmes tried to restore parity minutes later but his fierce driven shot was parried by the keeper.
It was the Village keeper who would be most busy for the rest of the half however. Baker did well to tip a strike over on the half hour mark and he dealt capably with a number of shots which began to pepper his goal.
The constant surge towards the American's goal became too much though and he brought down a Duffys striker as he was bearing down on goal for a penalty. Despite diving the right way and getting something on the strike, Baker was unable to stop the opposition taking a two goal lead. 0-2.
Half time: Village Manchester 0-2 Duffys
Village made a number of subs throughout the first half to ensure everyone got some valuable playing time and the energy and enthusiasm was unquestionable. With such a much changed side it was understandable that the team would take a little while to gel.
The second half started as the first finished with Baker again called into action to push a shot wide from number seven's smart run and shot.
Duffys did get a third on the hour mark as they worked well to get some space and finish past Baker. 0-3
They almost got a fourth as excellent team play and passing saw them hit the post with 15 minutes remaining.
Village nearly got the goal that their effort deserved on the final whistle but Holmes' effort was scrambled away from goal.
In pre-season, the results do not really matter and the more important thing was that players got minutes on the pitch. With more games ahead there will be numerous opportunities to create more cohesion and understanding to go with the undoubted ability of the players on show.
Full time: Village Manchester 0-3 Duffys