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ALL of the boys played so well throughout the tournament in the blistering sunshine. With the games running short at just 15 minutes long with no halftime break we needed to be fully awake and quick off the mark straight from the kick off rather than starting at our usual leisurely (who’s been up late the night before playing video games) sleepy Sunday morning pace. It was a shame to be missing some of our key players, but all the boys worked really well together and showed plenty of grit & team spirit. We battled hard and at times played some wonderful flowing football that was a joy to watch.

We had a little good luck in our favour at times with a few of the oppositions shots hitting the post or crossbar or being miraculously cleared off the line, but I think we generally looked comfortable against all of the teams until we faced one of the Danson Sports FC teams from the Kent league in the semifinal who were unfortunately much quicker, stronger and better organised for us to compete with. I’d like to see us play them again in a pre-season friendly when we have our full squad back. It would make for a very competitive match and be a great learning experience for us.

A big highlight of the tournament for me was how the boys bonded and showed belief and supported their teammates, especially in the penalty shootout in the quarterfinals.That was an exciting finish and I loved seeing their ecstatic faces when we clinched the winner! I’d like to say a special mention for every member of the team and all of the boys who subbed for us throughout the games. It was always a difficult choice and never based on their performance, but just trying to give our players plenty of match time and still give us our strongest chance of winning the tournament. Also to Elijah who guested up front for us with his silky skills and for Oskar who played in goal and made many fine saves. If only his borrowed goalkeeper gloves were just a touch bigger as he managed to get his fingertips to a lot more of the shots.

Also to all of our AFC Lewisham supporters who cheered us on so enthusiastically. It really helps to lift the boys. Where were you Richard??? We missed your vocal contributions....and your knobbly knees. I’ve lost my voice from all the pitch side encouragement so I can’t actually make much noise right now when I try to speak, but imagine I am SHOUTING this out to you all with a beaming smile: Well done boys!!! We are very proud of you. 😀⚽🏆👏🙌🏽👊🏻👍🏾⚽😀

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