After having 2 weeks without a game the u14's B returned to action with a lunchtime trip to Bingley Bayern who had only lost once so far this season. Sutton gave a debut to new signing Ewan Hanbury-Wallace in centre midfield. The yellows won the toss and went on the attack straight from the kick off. It was good to see them awake from the start instead of it taking 15 minutes to wake up. After 5 minutes former Bingley player Brett Parkin burst into the box and with the home keeper expecting a low cross Brett decided to take the shot which unfortunately hit the side netting but it was a good early effort. Brett was making his 1st return to Bingley after his transfer on deadline day last season. It wasn’t long before the visitors were in front as Callum Filkin wouldn’t give up on the left after initially losing the ball his persistence paid off as he won it back and found Matt Akrigg in the area and his strike beat the home keeper to give Sutton a 1 nil lead on 10 minutes. Sutton were looking strong and attacking midfielder Chloe Hodge was having a big influence on the game as she was able to have more freedom thanks to the new defensive midfield partnership of Ewan Hanbury-Wallace and James Kitson who were making things very difficult for Bingley.
Bingley managed an equalizer against the run of play as a rare drop in concentration from Centre Back James Pyrah let the ball through to Bingley's tall striker who’s shot strike from just outside the area went past keeper Leon Jashanica and into the net. There was a touch of good fortune though as the ball bounced off JP's side directly into the strikers path. 16 minutes gone and it was 1 a piece.
The yellows were soon back in front as their domination in midfield paid off as Ewan won the ball inside his own half and then had the intelligence to spot Matt's run with a wonderful through ball and Matt did the rest as him put the ball past the home keeper to make it 1 – 2 to the visitors after 16 minutes. With James and Ewan so dominant in centre midfield Sutton were finding it easier to attack with Callum on the left, Brett on the right and Chloe down the middle causing Bingley all sorts of problems. Bingley had been under pressure foe a long period but they then went on a counter attack as they got behind right back Thomas Harrison for the 1st time but just as the Bingley player thought he was away JP came across and took him down taking 1 for the team! The foul was just inside the Sutton half but the Bingley player rolled about 10 meters forward and was awarded the free kick just 10 meters from the Sutton area. Luckily the ref saw it as a late challenge and nothing malicious so kept his cards in his pocket. The Bingley free kick was a poor one as it was well blocked by Thomas in the wall. Bingley then had a shot from distance which sales high and wide but unfortunately they were back level from the resulting goal kick as it dropped at the feet of the tall Bingley striker who took a couple of touches and struck it into the bottom corner of the net from outside the box giving Leon no chance of saving. It was 2 all after 33 minutes and that is how it stayed at half time. Bingley were lucky to still be in the game after Sutton’s dominance in that 1st half. It was good to see the yellows defence standing strong after recent fitness issues with Thomas, JP, Greg Riddiough and Charlie Crook dealing with everything that was thrown at them which resulted in Bingley only being able to shoot from distance.
The yellows were now playing with the wind to their backs and were unchanged at half time with both 1st half subs staying on. Reece Bithell playing at left back (for Charlie Crook) and Jacob Stephens on the right (for Callum Filkin).
Again Sutton were on top and nearly retook the lead as the ball fell to Chloe just inside the area and her overhead kick forced a good save from the home stopper on 8 minutes. Sutton did go back in front though after 12 minutes of the restart when Ewan’s clever ball over the top found Matt in space who took the ball on and smartly put it past the Bayern keeper. Their were some appeals for offside but the goal stood to make it 2 v 3. The visitors were well on top now and would have extended their lead but for a string of excellent saves from the Bingley keeper. Chloe, Brett, Callum and Ewan all had good efforts well saved. Matt nearly had his fourth when a clever ball from Jacob found Matt again in space but his shot went inches wide. Sutton then changed things slightly as they looked to kill the game with Charlie returning to left back with Callum on the left and Reece moving into centre midfield giving Ewan a well earned rest after a very impressive debut. Instead of these changes giving Sutton a further boost it seemed to do the opposite as Bingley had a spell of pressure of their own. The home side some how found themselves back level after their right midfielder cut inside and although he wasn’t really going anywhere he brought a foul from Callum who’s mistimed tackle brought him down in the area and the ref pointed to the spot. After a slight disagreement Bingley's tall striker stepped up and placed it to Leon's left to claim his hat trick after 23 minutes of the 2nd half. At 3 all and Sutton now on the back foot it looked like Sutton would make another change but then they seemed to settle down again as Reece made a couple of good defensive reads which gave him confidence to kick on. Bingley were still having more of the field position which meant Chloe had to drop deeper but this paid dividends as she won the ball after a tussle and Charlie came in to assist then after some good work from Crook he sent a delightful pass down the left for Matt to collect and he took it on and rounded the keeper to slot into the now empty net which gave Sutton the lead once more with 10 minutes remaining.
Sutton won yet another corner after 65 minutes which Greg attacked and although his 1st attempt was blocked he stayed alive and got a 2nd chance which he buried into the back of the net to give them a commanding 3 – 5 lead with five minutes remaining. Two minutes later and the Yellows put the game to bed as the impressive Matt Akrigg got his 5th of the day after great work from Chloe Hodge on the edge of the area she found Matt near the penalty spot who finished into the bottom left corner of the Bingley goal to make it 6 – 3 to Sutton. It was nearly 7 for Sutton as Callum unleashed a cracking shot which just shaved the outside of the post to go behind for a goal kick but that was the last kick of the game and Sutton claimed a well deserved victory.
Today’s RRG Group Toyota Silsden sponsored man of the match went to centre back Greg Riddiough who was extremely solid at the back and got his reward with a fine goal. It could easily have gone to a number of the Sutton players and it was a difficult decision but well deserved and well done Greg.
All 13 players today fully played their part in this impressive victory but I'd like to make a few special mentions.
Debutant Ewan Hanbury-Wallace was outstanding in centre midfield and struck up an immediate partnership with James Kitson who was equally impressive with his work rate they dovetailed each other wonderfully.
Callum on the left and Brett on the right caused havoc for Bingley with their pace and quality and again the pair’s work rate was phenomenal.
With Ewan and Brett so dominant this meant Chloe Hodge could play more of her own game and she was back to her influential best in a more attacking role.
Matt Akrigg, what can I say? He’s got his goal scoring touch back which should give him the confidence to kick on and score a bag full every week. Also his work rate was massively improved and 5 goals speaks for itself.
Charlie Crook who’d have thought he'd be playing left back and playing so well? I think it’s fair to say that in his previous spell at the club he wasn’t too keen on defending but now he looks a natural.
Right back Thomas Harrison was back to his best with some bone crunching tackles and all round quality defending.
Leon Jashanica performed excellently in goal with the highlight being when he scared the Bingley player into skewing his effort away from goal for a goal kick. There was nothing Leon could have done about any of the Bingley goals.
Jacob Stephens came on and played on the right and looked confident with himself and didn’t let the Bingley left get the better of him.
James Pyrah continues his comeback from injury and illness and although was ill all week he played well and put himself about as he left his mark on a number of Bingley players who were looking for him rather than the ball.
Well done everyone now let’s keep it up and climb the table.