Lineup: Hutchinson, Seymour, Laing, de la Haye, Davies, Connolly, Shaw, Tierney (Brooks), Chadwick, Perkins, Golding (Dickens)
Goals: De La Haye, Davies
After a disappointing defeat the previous week, Cubo were looking to bounce back to winning ways against a somewhat recognisable Staines Lammas side. League new boys after dropping down a division, they had acquired plenty of talent since merging with Lalelham FC this year, historically a Cubo “bogey team”.
An unseasonable, mid-October scorcher greeted the players as they took to the hard, bobbly pitch at Lalelham Recreation Ground. Cubo started well with a couple of buccaneering runs from Chadwick on the right hand side and Golding down the left, an unfamiliar position for the seasoned full back.
Midfield maestro Connolly begun to control the game after 15 minutes of frantic action, linking up with Perkins and Tierney well and creating some good opportunities in the final third. However, Cubo’s final ball was lacking in quality with Perkins spurning a long range effort wide and Davies trying his hand from 30 yards on 2 occasions with both efforts certainly not troubling the Staines goalkeeper.
The break-through came 5 minutes before the half and it was the impressive Staines No. 9 who came up with the goods. The striker latched onto a speculative ball down the right channel showing pace and composure to finish and send Staines in 1 up at half-time. On reflection in the dressing room, Cubo had not clicked out of 2nd gear and were ambling along in the contest. They had played some good football but the lack of cutting edge was evident which had to change in the 2nd half.
The shift in intensity was obvious with the Cubo front 3 pressing high and applying pressure to an awkward looking back three. This pressure told after 15 minutes of the 2nd half when a beautifully flighted Connolly corner was headed down and in by Tim de la Haye with precision and power, 1-1.
Cubo begun to exert their authority on the game with Perkins and Chadwick creating some excellent chances but there continued to be stalemate until 10 minutes before the end. Again, it was Staines who took the lead with another ball down the line which their substitute winger gladly picked up and drove towards goal. His shot was saved brilliantly by Hutchinson but there was the Staines star No. 9 again, to tap home and give his side underserved lead.
Cubo begun to panic, crestfallen at the fact they could come away with not even a point to show from their strong 2nd half performance. However, it was Matt Laing who brought order the chaos around him. He calmly brought the ball down on the right hand side and floated an inviting cross toward the back post where Rob Davies had ghosted in, unmarked, to plant a beautiful header over the Staines Keeper and into the corner of the net.
The points were shared and Cubo, although disappointed not to win, escaped a damaging defeat. With results elsewhere being favourable, a break from the league and a trip to Chessington in the cup next week may be just the tonic for this slight dip in form.
MoM: Davies – mr dependable has been exactly that all season after switching to the unfamiliar left-back position, but he’s been superb, and deserves MoM for popping up with the equaliser (a header, from full back, would you believe it)