Empresa Norfolk Women’s Premier Division
Norwich Dragons 3s 0-0 Broadland 1
Following on from last week’s impressive victory over Loddon Ladies 1st Team, Dragons were looking to finish the season strongly with a convincing win against Broadlands Ladies 1sts in order to secure their place at the top of the League once more.
Broadland brought the game to Dragons straight away, who were caught slightly off guard and did not seem fully prepared in the first 5 minutes. The Ladies 3s have been working hard on training in developing their distributive play, particularly moving the ball around the back in order to outlet the ball. This was badly needed against an energetic and switched on Broadland team who closed down play quickly and were swift on the break.
Dragons worked hard to keep possession of the ball, but struggled to ajust to the bouncy pitch, meaning many passes and interceptions were not kept fully under control. They worked on hard on this throughout but did not appear to be in control of the game in the way that previous results would have suggested against this Broadland side.
Debs Smith worked particularly hard at top of the diamond, driving forwards at speed with the ball and distributing it out to the wider players where Lara Taylor and Sian Lawrie made some excellent runs. Laura Goodbun caused Broadland their biggest problems, running at her trademark pace into the D to put some crosses and shots away. Whilst a couple hit the target Dragons were unable to convert these into goals.
Player of the match Kristina Smyth had her fair share of work to do to keep the clean sheet, with some brilliant saves and some brave keeping off of her line. Carmel Windsor- Waite was her usual calm and collected self under pressure, clearing many balls from the D and getting them down the line to the midfield.
Dragons were, unfortunately, very lucky to gain a 0-0 draw after a Broadlands goal was disallowed for not touching the backboard on its way to crossing the line and a separate open goal was missed, placing the ball inches wide of the posts. This wasn’t the type of performance that Ladies 3s are used to giving and there is lots to take back to training to work on for January.
Empresa Norfolk Women’s Division 1
Norwich Dragons 4s 1-3 Broadland 2
After a convincing win last week over a Carrow side, Dragons were optimistic about this weekend’s battle against Broadland 2, especially after they beat them so convincingly in the first leg at the Den.
Yet again Dragons had the lion share of the procession. They worked hard to keep the ball, especially in midfield with Claire Canning, Megan Williams and Gemma Rump having a particularly good game. Dragons did commit a few loose passes especially when not under pressure. They have been working on our communication and passing in training, and although this has improved over previous weeks in still an area they can improve on.
Player of the match Charlotte Pounder returned to this team, and was obviously feeling a lot more confident after her debut last week. After taking a particularly nasty knock to the shoulder from a lifted free hit, it seemed to make her more determined and she took the game to Broadland, never giving up.
The Dragons forwards were missing the pacy Anja, and had to rely on passing the ball and moving into space to get the ball around some solid Broadland defenders. This week they lacked accuracy and unfortunately a lot of our chances were wasted by poor final touches and a good goal keeping display.
Yet again Dragons were awarded a dozen or so corners. These are becoming a frustration to the forwards as again they failed to convert any of them. This is something Dragons must work on after Christmas. The only time Dragons came close to scoring at a short was from a tremendous strike from Sophie Wood, the ball rising in the air, sailing over the keeper’s head and into the goal before dropping. The goal was initially awarded, and them following a discussion between the umpires was disallowed. Sophie Farrow did well injecting the ball.
Sue Cross scored Dragons only goal today. It was similar to her goal last week, with this time Claire Canning intercepting the ball, and having the vision to pass the ball into the D, were Sue was unmarked near the post and able to slot it in.
Dragons allowed Broadland to score three times. The majority of these started from “big hits” that bobbled and bounced through the midfield. The defence were unlucky, because the few times they lost their player or their shape they seemed to be penalised. Chelsea Crawford had a great game as centre back stopping many of these big hits, but Dragons struggled when the ball bounced past her to regroup.
Although the score was emphatic, Dragons can feel proud of the effort today.
POM : Charlotte Pounder
Empresa Norfolk Women’s Division 2
Norwich Dragons 5s 0-2 Norwich City 5
What the 5’s would like to remember from the weekend game against City 5’s is how the second half was played. Unfortunately the first half lacked the 5’s usual attack from the start which was needed against a strong robust opposition who regularly play together and strike those long balls through to speedy forwards. The 5’s were damp but warmed up, team positions organised ready for the off. The defence of Jess Tye-Leech, Freya Clogan and Beth Elgood were quickly put to test and held off the charging opposition. The 5’s regained possession with some excellent interceptions from Vicky Earley, to pass the ball up to midfield. The opposition were quick to try and close down the home team and the midfield of Racheal and Catherine Matthews, were working hard to pass the ball around and through to players before getting picked up. The first City goal caught the 5’s on the hop with a long strike perfectly placed to a waiting forward who slotted it home At half time the home team knew that the game play had not been our best but was better toward the end of the half. We were determined to improve this for the second half.
There was more pace and aggression to keep possession and score. The defensive trio were working hard with Freya channelling those City players. Chiara Bond was on a mission and was firing balls up to the forwards, she blocked the opposition and was lightening around the pitch. Megan Farrant and Lucy Morton both picked up wide balls and out ran the opposition. The 5’s had several chances on goal but none passed the keeper. Toward the end of the game all players were pushing high really wanting that elusive goal. Nothing was getting in Helen Marsh’s way and she weaved through the City players, steam coming from her ears. Beth was reading the opposition play well and could pick up those through balls before City players. This was a much better half and the effort was doubled by everyone. A couple of considerations for the next game, no faffing about in the D, smash shots off and just having an awareness of your team players around you when passing. The next game will be played in the mode in which we started the season.
Men’s East League Division 6NE
Norwich Dragons 5s 2-4 Dereham 5
Dereham 5’s go 3-0 up as Dragons fail to crisply hit their passes or intercept the through ball which are stopping on the tricky surface. Alan Quinton & Tom Vaughan hit back with a goal each.
After halftime Dereham get a fourth and goal line clearances by Mike Banham & McCartney Aldous with fine keeping by Freddie Dixon ensured that Dragons ended 2-4 down but closer than in the first match against them. Come the 3rd game at the Den, Dragons might just show them how far they have improved. Thanks to Tom Vaughan & Andy Carver for coming into the side late. Thanks to Pat Goss for running the bench. Thanks to Rob Coyle for taking the umpiring appointment at short notice. Well done Ray , Sol, Guy, Butts, Rob L, Pedro & George for the 100% effort again with the other guys mentioned above.
Well done lads, Christmas off for fine performances recently & lets start the year with the same team & go through January unbeaten starting at Watton on Jan 2nd.
Empresa Norfolk Boys Development League
Norwich Dragons 4-1 Norwich City
Dragons started strong with quick and confident passes in the first quarter allowing them to maintain possession and attack well. Unfortunately they were not that coordinated and this along with a lucky break from City allowed them to capitalise.
However the home side came back strong in the second quarter and played well with a great mixture of passing and skills. Continuing to play well on and off the ball for the rest of the game, with some great individual and team performances allowing Jonathan Chaney Baxter to score three goals and Jose San Millan to score one. It was a great game and well played by all involved.
Final score: 4-1 to Dragons
Captain: Joe Osborne
Man of the match: Jose San Millan and Jonathan Chaney Baxter