AFC DIDSBURY: Leighton, L Darlington, Bishop, Battersby (C) (Kilgour), Harrison, Kendrick, Whiteley (Mackie), M Darlington (Ferguson), Menghini, Vasko, Smith.
GOALS: Menghini (2), Smith (2)
ASSISTS: Kendrick, Kilgour, L Darlington
MAN OF THE MATCH: Leighton
LEAGUE NEW, TEAM NEW, OBJECTIVES NEW, SYSTEM NEW, GAZ NEW…
The AFCD scouts were extremely busy during the summer transfer period in need to enrich the current and add to the second team squad. With such a big name in charge like Jose Mussinho it was a fairly easy task to do. People were queuing in front of his house to be selected to be a part of the AFCD family. (For all newbies, you should feel blessed.)
And then came the 4th September 2016, the day we had been waiting so long for. New season, new league, new AFCD team, new system of playing… the list could go on forever.
Before I start I would like to share something with you from our pre-season drinking session on Friday night:
Once upon a time when I was in India I got invited to a birthday party. People at some point started dancing with plates on their heads. At the time I found it strange so I told myself there is definitely nothing in life that can surprise me after seeing this. If only I had known then how wrong I could be. After seeing Whiteley dancing with his shoe on his head and Leighton topless at 8:30pm, this made my Indian experience not look so strange anymore. There were few other highlights of the night but if I could only remember them and then there was THE LADY IN PURPLE.
Anyway, it was a beautiful Sunday morning, everyone ready to set off for our first match in Macclesfield. We went around the roundabouts twice and still arrived 1.5hrs before the match, a few lads turning up as if they were going on a walk and Kieran Smith was wearing his sexy hat. Here we are AFC Didsbury.
Fully ready to try our new system in a competitive match. Game on.
Straight from the kick off a long ball was sent forward by the opposition, the slippery surface helped a bit and Dolphin Inn’s striker found himself in an excellent position after just 12 seconds of the game. Jame Leighton was left helplessly watching the striker passing by and we all knew what was coming. If only if we didn’t have a Lloyd Darlington in our squad, out of nowhere making a clearance worthy of a Champagne Moment nomination. Well done son!
The Didsbury players deployed themselves on the pitch afterwards. The pitch wasn’t in perfect condition but they didn’t mind and kept playing their tiki-taka system. As the game progressed further Didsbury kept possession and controlled the game. A big shock came after 10 minute when centre half and captain, John Batterbsy, tore his hamstring and Didsbury had to re-arrange the squad. Pete Kilgour with his fresh sexy legs came on.
The first big chance for the away side came after Vasko crossed the ball into the box and Matt Darlington volleyed the ball not far from goal. Spectators were getting excited and It didn’t take long for last season’s top scorer, Ross Menghini, to open the scoring after a deflected ball found a way behind the opponent’s defenders and he calmly slotted home with the first goal of 2016-17. Didsbury looked confident in the middle of the field, the trio of Kilgour, Tom Whiteley and Menghini linked up very well with support from right back Darlington and left back, Matt Harrison, they looked unbreakable. There were some attempts from opposition to get the equaliser however, Leighton was in fine form and made some brilliant saves.
The referee blew his whistle to end the first half and Didsbury were a step closer to their first victory.
No changes on either side, game on. It was the 56th minute of the game and up to this point playing without a single mistake Matt Kendrick made a shocking pass towards fellow centre half, Chris Bishop, who had been excellent all game but was left helpless.… nothing else needs to be said 1:1!
Straight after that, Kendrick made up for it, sending a excellent pass upfront where Menghini’s finish was like Bergkamp’s against Argentina in 1998 (as JB would say). 1:2 AFCD taking the lead again.
It didn’t take long and Dolphin inn equalised again, a goal very similar to the one Didsbury had just scored. A very calm finish left Leighton helpless.
There were some changes made, new singing Adam Ferguson came onto the pitch to help Didsbury grab the 3 points at a ground were an unnamed Didsbury player claimed to have fingered most of his lovers as a youngster!
It was a good decision in the end as Didsbury took the lead again after Kilgour brilliantly found Smith and the well-built forward, who was found in a local gym in Great Ancoats a year ago by Didsbury scout Pavol Vasko, did what he does best. 2:3.
In a matter of a few minutes Didsbury increased their lead and made it 2:4 when L Darlington (a right back, found himself on the left wing) and with the outside of his foot, sent an excellent pass into Smith who calmly scored.
Dolphin inn managed to keep the game alive by grabbing themselves a 3rd goal. However, it wasn’t enough this time and AFC Didsbury could celebrate their first victory.
An excellent start. Well done to everyone!!!
Words by Pavol Vasko.
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