Sudbury 1 Felixstowe 5
NE14 East Men's League
Division Two North
Sudbury 1 Felixstowe 5
THIS week Felixstowe travelled to rivals Sudbury anticipating a tough match against a side well established in this league.
With both sides having played each other many times in the past the opening stages of the game was rather a cagey affair. Both sides defended well but failed to make much happen in the attacking half of the pitch. As the half went on however Felixstowe gained momentum and began to dominate the possession, the tough tackling of brothers James and Matt Walker disrupted the Sudbury midfield regularly and allowed Andy Kelcher to push up from defence to add extra pressure in the middle of the park.
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This pressure soon paid off as Andy Kelcher sent Phil Leney flying down the right with an incisive pass that unlocked the Sudbury defence for the first time. Leney's pace took him well clear of his marker and gave him time to fire in a perfectly delivered cross that Joe Green duly swept into the goal.
The visitors continued to push forward creating a number of chances that brought several good saves from the Sudbury keeper. Felixstowe scored their second goal of the half soon after. Kelcher again pushed up from defence and found himself with space to run with the ball. The home side failed to close him down as he moved into the opposition area, firing a stinging shot at goal. The shot was well saved but great follow up play from Jack Entwistle doubled the score by lifting the ball over the stranded keeper.
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The second half of the match saw Sudbury play with much higher intensity, looking for a goal to get them back into the game. Felixstowe didn't help themselves by failing to keep the ball on numerous occasions due to the home sides pressure. This resulted in Sudbury halving the deficit. A rare lapse in defensive concentration allowed a Sudbury winger to get to the by-line and somehow sneak the ball into the goal from the narrowest of angles.
Felixstowe did not let their heads drop after this setback, and rallied together, determined not to let their lead slip. Their hard work paid off with a crucial third goal that knocked the wind out of any Sudbury comeback. Kelcher again appeared in the opposition area to fire the ball through a maze of players into the bottom corner of the goal, the keeper unsighted until the very last minute.
The final stages of the game saw Felixstowe dominate the majority of possession, aided by the yellow card of a Sudbury player. The visitors added a fourth after superb work from Entwistle, who latched onto a through ball and drew the keeper out of his goal before laying the ball off to the fast approaching Turner who slotted the ball calmly into an open goal. With effectively the final play of the game Alex Woodhouse completed the scoring from a short corner, by drag flicking the ball at the goalkeeper, who saved the shot but couldn't keep it from rolling over the goal line.
Overall a good performance from Felixstowe against a side that has given them many problems in the past. Next week the Seasiders look to extend their winning run to six games and maintain their position as leaders of the division against a UEA men's team who achieved promotion with Felixstowe last year.