Lineup: Hutchinson, Seymour, Wensley, Torr (Laing), Frost, Peel, Connolly, Cross (Davies), Guttridge, Chadwick, Tulip (Perkins)
Goals: Guttridge 4, Cross 3, Peel 3, Perkins 2, Chadwick 1
As the autumn sun began to set behind the hallowed turf of Southfields academy, AFC Cubo took to the 3G knowing that a big win could propel them into top spot. They were to face a relatively unknown entity in West End Village, a newly promoted side who had been struggling for form sitting 2nd from bottom.
Cubo looked threatening and dominant from the get-go with Tulip, Chadwick, Peel and Guttridge picking apart a shaky and fragile looking back line. With 15 minutes gone a sweeping Cubo move gave Chadwick the chance to put them ahead. His shot went agonisingly wide, but the West End goalkeeper was late and dangerous, clattering into Chadwick, potentially causing some serious harm. Luckily, Chadwick hobbled away with only a dead leg and the referee, correctly, pointed to the spot. Tulip stepped up but fired wide for the first time in a Cubo shirt and the game remained 0-0.
Just 5 minutes later however, Matt Cross latched onto a searching ball from the back and drove towards goal. He finished well, slotting past the Goalkeeper to put Cubo in front. 3 minutes later it was 2. A smart move from the boys in blue culminated in a tidy, Chadwick finish.
With 10 minutes to half time a moment of controversy. Peel with a delicious lob from 18 yards out beat the keeper and defender on the line. The ball dropped in and Peel wheeled away to celebrate his 2nd of the season. Or so it seemed. The desperate West End goalkeeper claimed the ball had gone behind and not into the goal. This was due to a hole in the bottom of the net which was where the ball gone through after it had landed IN the goal. With the West End linesman confidently confirming the ball had NOT gone in, the referee had no other choice but disallow the goal. Luckily the decision would pale into insignificance.
A third came moments later, Jordan Guttridge getting in on the act with another good finish after leaving the hapless keeper on the deck. Cross added a 4th smashing the ball into the corner from a difficult angle. Peel scored the 5th with lovely volley and Guttridge the 6th with a gorgeous curling effort from just inside the penalty area.
A magnificent half for Cubo, pressing the ball in the attacking 3rd, playing confidently from the back and winning everything in the midfield. Perkins came on for the injured Tulip at half time and the mentality was to keep going and put an emphatic result on the board.
Cubo would surely have been forgiven for taking their foot off the gas in the second half but no such respite was given to the dumbstruck opposition. A 7th from Guttridge, completing his hatrick, another pearler from Peel and Matt Cross rounding off his impressive hatrick with another fine piece of finishing.
Perkins took the Cubans into double figures following a mazy run and finish. Peel then grabbed HIS hatrick with a sumptuous volley past the forlorn goalkeeper and Guttridge grabbed his 4th after latching onto a fumble. Perkins finished off the mauling connecting with the ball and nearly the post with a header after a terrific delivery from Peel.
A scintillating attacking display from the home team with the most frightening fact being that it so could easily have been more. A special mention to Hutchinson and the solid back line too for keeping a well deserved 2nd clean sheet of the season. Controversy followed after the game as both old and current chairmen argued over whether or not this was a record result, all that matters though is that it was a result the rest of the league will have their eyes on – what a day!
AFC Cubo travel to Merrow this Saturday looking to solidify their place at the top of SEIFL as we move into the Christmas period.
MoM: Tough one when the result has been so emphatic and three hat tricks were scored, but Cross wins it for sparking the goalfest and being the driving force throughout.