Flushed with success from their recent 6-0 win over British Cycling in the Summer Cup, ActiveWin FC returned to league football, looking to do the double over SCA.
In their last meeting, the toilet paper manufacturers utterly unraveled as ActiveWin romped home to a 5-0 win.
This time, they were once again undone as ActiveWin destroyed their paper-thin defence with 11 goals!
It was a grey evening at the Salford Community Centre as the match got underway. ActiveWin were missing key players, including dependable defensive duo Eddie Jordan and Eliot Jacob. In Jordan’s absence, midfield maestro Josh Gamble was given the Captain’s armband, whilst Adam Rowley took on the lone striker role in lieu of the holidaying Ashley Leith.
Goal 1: Both teams were straight out of the gate, but it wasn’t long before ActiveWins broke the deadlock. A clever ball from Rowley set up regular reinforcement Phil Pole, who stroked the ball into the bottom corner. 1-0
Goal 2: AW continued to look dangerous, and doubled their tally soon after. A fantastic corner saw Rowley rise and head home. 2-0
Scenting blood, AW continued to apply pressure. Rowley threatened, whilst Tom Cantor, and Chris Dodd shut down any SCA attempts at goal. James Alker had little to do in the AW net but was more than capable when called upon.
Goal 3: Pole saw one shot cleared off the line, and another saved by the SCA keeper, before a hardworking Toby Levy picked him out and Pole doubled his tally. 3-0
AW were commanding the game. Adam Jackson was winning headers, Gamble was earning his armband with a typically robust performance, whilst Cantor and Dodd were ensuring AW stayed in possession.
They started to lose their rhythm. The lack of quality in the SCA had the curious effect of making AW messy and undisciplined. They were trying to do too much, when they would have been far better getting back to basics.
Still, it didn’t prevent them once again poking holes in the SCA back line.
Goal 4: Liam Tyler is a skillful and intelligent player who kept his head when others were starting to lose theirs, setting up Rowley for his brace. 4-0
SCA were trying to a foothold in the game, but Dodd, Jackson, and Cantor in particular, cleared their lines and ensured nobody got through. An increasingly frustrated SCA side started to appeal for handballs and offside at every opportunity, but AW went off 4-0 up at half-time.
Kay, Tyler and Rowley were linking up well and threatening to add to the scoreline, but the latter had a series of dubious offside decisions go against him. Luksys-Booth saw the funny side, commenting from the bench: “He’d be on double figures if only he could stay onside!”
SCA Goal: AW went to sleep, allowing SCA to score thanks to an admittedly well-placed header. 4-1
Goal 5: Their joy was short-lived. Not long after, Rowley completed his hat-trick taking on the keeper one on one and sending him the wrong way with a smart tap in. 5-1
Goal 6: The tall target man wasn’t finished yet. Taking the ball on the half-way line he skipped past SCA players and finished with aplomb. 6-1
Goal 7: The goals continued to come thick and fast, with debutante James Walker getting on the end of a fantastic ball from Gamble, with a lovely diving header. 7-1
Goal 8: Walker’s second was another good finish, taking the tally to 8-1
Goal 9: Next, Kay got himself on the scoresheet, slotting home just past the SCA keeper. 9-1
Goal 10: AW finally reached double figures when Pole completed his hat-trick. 10-1
Goal 11: The final injury was inflicted on SCA as Levy and Tyler linked up once more and Tyler displayed perfect control to pull off an exquisite finish. 11-1
Verdict: Despite more changes to the starting line-up, ActiveWin have formed an impressive unit, which is bearing fruit in both the league and the cup competitions. A strong core group of players who have quickly gelled gives the team licence to make changes without disrupting their rhythm. They are fast becoming the team to beat.
Man of the Match: Levy, Pole and Tyler were all in with a good shout here, but for four goals and being a near constant nuisance to SCA, Rowley just edged it.