Youth team drop to heavy defeat at Robins
Cheltenham Town 6 Shrewsbury Town 1
Saturday 27th July 2013
Town: Alex Ashton, Shaun Rowley, Dylan Sweeney, Jack Richards, Tom Astley, George Carpenter, Ryan Hickman, Dave Easthope, Niall Flint, Alex Fletcher, Matty Jones, Josh Ginnelly, Sam Molyneux, Scott Ryan, Kaiman Anderson, Jeff Watkins.
Scorer: Kaiman Anderson
A combination of individual errors and an extremely poor first half performance cost us dearly against Cheltenham Town who ran out 6-1 winners.
We were unable to recover after conceding a soft opening goal 80 seconds into the game. The second goal was an even bigger disaster. We cheaply lost possession from a free kick inside the Cheltenham half. After taking the free kick short we tried to pass through an extremely crowded area when the ball could have been transferred into a wide area. Upon losing possession we were hit on the counter attack and Cheltenham made it 2-0 after rounding Alex Ashton to roll the ball in. The third goal we conceded just before half time came from trying to play out from the back and a complete lack of awareness and indecision on the ball gave the Cheltenham attacker the opportunity to steal the ball and run through on goal to make it 3-0.
At half time we changed the formation from 4-3-3 to 4-4-2 with a diamond in midfield. The change of formation gave us an extra player in the middle and our possession dramatically improved as we played the majority of the second period inside the Cheltenham half. However individual mistakes cost us dearly again and 3 more goals followed. Frustratingly Cheltenham’s fifth goal came from our free kick on the edge of the Cheltenham box. We made a complete mess of the free kick and we were countered and punished. Late on, Kaiman Anderson pulled a goal back for us with a great finish into the top corner after Alex Fletcher chipped the ball into his path. Scott Ryan also had a penalty saved in the second period after being brought down in the box.
Hopefully this will be a lesson to the players in how their preparation in the week before a game will affect their performance on a Saturday. They were warned repeatedly before the game that if they did not increase their work rate and quality on the ball they would struggle. All of the goals were avoidable and the most disappointing goals came from the free kicks which we had inside the Cheltenham half. We accept that the players will make mistakes when trying to play out from the back and that this will sometimes hurt us. However more quality, composure, and better decision making on the ball is required at this level. A positive to come out of the game was our ability to retain the ball in the second half, however if we keep gifting goals to the opposition any good work will be undone.