Whetton, Torr, Wensley (C) (Laing), de la Haye, Frost (Findleton), Connolly, Peel, Harris (Cooper), Tulip, Perkins, Simmons
Goals: Perkins (3), Tulip (1), Simmons (1), Peel (1)
Cubo got their season back on track after a poor run, coming off best in what can only be described as a crazy game at Southfields academy.
Naming probably their strongest squad of the season, with regular players returning and new lads settling well into the fold, managers Tulip and Perkins opted to give a debut to Harry Peel in midfield, and new defender Matt Laing taking his place on the bench.
A bright start from both teams saw a lot of possession through the midfield with the odd half chance coming the way of Tulip in particular who had a few early runs at the Tooting right back. Cubo began to press well before being hit by a Tooting sucker punch, as the pacy Tooting striker was able to work an opening inside of the box before finishing past Whetton, who managed to get a hand on it.
Tooting began to grow into the game but Cubo quickly hit back, Elliot Connolly’s piledriver left foot volley from 30 yards cannoned back off the bar and into the path of Tulip following up, who was able to control an awkwardly bouncing ball to make it 1-1.
Within minutes, Cubo took the lead, a superb long cross field ball by Tom Simmons was chased down by Tulip, who rounded the keeper and defender before smashing a shot at goal which was superbly blocked by the covering Tooting defender, with the ball landing at Peel’s feet who made no mistake to grab himself a debut goal.
Both sides had chances as the half drew to a close with Tooting hitting the woodwork twice and Cubo’s forwards going close but for superb work from the keeper.
Into the 2nd half and club captain Wensley was forced off with a back injury, handing Laing a half to make his mark. Cubo again started brightly and had an early goal to extend their lead. An early throw from Tulip found it’s way to peel, who crossed in for Perkins in to the box who bagged his first goal. A real sucker punch for Tooting but the way the goals were going in you know the game wasn’t over.
Tooting began pushing hard and were rewarded soon after, a ferocious shot from distance finding it’s way under Whetton’s arms to make it 3-2.
Cubo responded in kind, Tulip’s shot taking a huge deflection up and over the keeper, with smart thinking from Perkins helping him trap the ball on the byline, before bringing it back into play and making it 4-2.
Again Tooting responded with a well taken goal finished low from the edge of the box, to put the momentum back in their favour.
But Perkins grabbed his hat trick soon after, breaking from the right after good interplay from Simmons and the midfield, an attempted through ball to Tulip deflected back into his path and he made no mistake slotting past the keeper. The watching crowd of approximately 10 people weren’t able to witness a historic first Perkins —> Tulip assist in history, it felt like that goal in particular really deflated Bec.
Simmons got himself in on the act after a super counter attacking run by Perkins, who ran the length of the field before squaring to the striker, who slotted home to get the goal his energy deserved.
Tooting pulled a goal back to make the score 6-4 with a late header, but Cubo held on for the win.
A pretty crazy game but it was welcoming to see the high-tempo counter attacking football Cubo do best make a welcome return supported ably by a tenacious and disciplined midfielder, and the 4 goals conceded didn’t do the defensive line justice after what was a good display. Credit to Tooting who had just as many chances as Cubo in the game but came off slightly worse.
Man of the match – Perkins’ hat trick and assist deservedly won this week, but special mention goes to the performance of Harry Peel, whose all action display across the pitch made the difference.