AFC Cubo 2nd XI 1 – 2 Sporting Duet – Saturday 27th September

Team: Arnie, Flower, Grayson, Ingle, Goulding, Crispy, Salty, Joe, Phil, Sam, Tel

Subs: Tom S, Henners, Jez

After a dissapointing start to the campaign, Cubo 2’s headed to the Kings House Sports Ground looking to turn the tide with a good performance in the cup. The opposition were familiar foes in the form of Sporting Duet, a league rival from last year and an opposition Cubo swept aside with a convincing 7-1 thrashing in the last encounter.

In good conditions, the game got underway with both sides taking time to find their feet. An energetic Duet side made it difficult for Cubo to settle into their usually silky passing game. As the half progressed, both sides squandered chances to take the lead, with the Cubo back 5 putting their bodies on the line to try and keep the sides level going into half time. It was not to be, with the Duet winger cutting in from the right flank and rocketing one into the side netting.

1-0   Duet.

Not to be deterred, a resurgent Cubo side began to find their feet, with the cries of Manager T.Hooper for the team to “transition quickly through phases of play” finally starting to sink in. More opportunities began to come the way of Cubo, with winger Sam causing trouble for the Duet right back in the latter stages of the half. As the sides traded possession the half came to a close without any other notably incidents.

The half team team talk focused on the positives, with the Cubo side confident that they could get themselves back into the tie. With a slap on the back from T.Hooper, Cubo headed into the second half with purpose.

Almost immediately from the whistle, Cubo imposed themselves on the game, working the ball into dangerous areas & looking the more likely to score. When the breakthrough came, it was weight lifted from the Cubo side, with Sam latching onto Phil’s pass before coolly lobbing the ball over the Duet keeper.

1-1, momentum with Cubo

With the scores levelled, the midfield battle became crucial, with some crunching tackles from both sides flying in. When the ball rarely left the middle, the occassional chance came Cubo’s way, but the boys in baby blue were unable to convert these into a lead. One controversial moment sorry Tel cynically hauled back when clean through on goal, but the referee opted to just award a free kick on the edge of the box and show a yellow card.

With the sides looking evenly matched, both sides knew that the next goal could be the winner. It was then that disaster struck, a misplaced pass in the Cubo half put the Duet striker through on goal who drew the helpless Arnie before squaring for an easy tap in by his teammate.

2-1 Duet

The Cubo side again rallied, with subs Henners, Jez & Tom S all making positive impacts. The game had become more open, with Cubo finding more opportunities to score. Unfortunately it wasn’t to be, with shots flashed wide when the opportunity came. A notable mention should be made to Cubo’s grit & determination in the second half, with some bruising tackles being put in. However, it was in vain, with the game coming to a close.

While the boys in baby blue will be disappointed with the result, they can take positives from the performance. For passages of the game they had dominated the opposition and looked dangerous in front of goal. Good performances from the bench will also please manager T.Hooper as the strength in depth currently afforded to the gaffer will be a hugh benefit come Ski Season and the annual availability crisis.

However, it is time to focus on the league, with 3pts needed to reassure the Cubo faithful.

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