In-Sports 's Match Report
Once again, the skies opened and rain fell on the Centaurs Pitch prior to In-Sports’ game against Lycee Francais Rouge on 21 April.
However, the grey skies and rain did little to dampen the spirits of the In-Sports boys who entered the game with a good run of form, having won the last 3 out of 3 games. Before kick-off, it definitely looked that the InSports boys were headed for a stern test of physical football as Lycee Francais Rouge lined up with many boys who stood taller and stockier in size and muscle.
The opening minutes of the game lived up to that billing as it proved to be a physical contest with both sides attempting to establish a foothold over the other and settle into the match. Lycee Francais Rouge pushed forward with all guns blazing and In-Sports’ defence and midfield held their ground with Irfan, Thaddeus and Kayden working in tandem to contain the physical French boys.
In-Sport’s diminutive wide midfielders - Danish and Matthew, and forwards – Kyan, Warren and Shafihan tried their best to get the ball forward despite being tightly marshalled and challenged by a Lycee defence that continuously closed them down tightly.
A breakthrough finally arrived for the In-Sports boys as a loose ball fell nicely into the path of Shafihan just outside the Lycee box and he made no mistake to rifle the shot in for the opening goal. The game was never short of excitement as the football play continued to swing back and forth as both sides fought hard to attack and defend their respective goal lines from whatever was thrown at them.As they couldn’t get past the InSports defence despite numerous forays forward, frustration sat in amongst a number of Lycee players. Elbows flew and outbursts increased as tempers frayed and even the referee was not spared from constant challenges to his decisions by Lycee’s players.
The In-Sports boys, while subject to numerous instances of rough, physical treatment from the opponents, remained calmed and claimed a second goal from Kyan, who blasted a shot after being fed with a perfect pass from Kayden. InSports’ third goal soon followed courtesy of Kayden's well-taken left-footed shot from outside the box. To their credit, Lycee came back roaring and almost got a goal of their own off a corner in the final minute of the first half, but was denied by a crucial interception and clearance by Matthew.
The second half began with Lycee playing with more urgency to press forward and In-Sports trying to slow the pace. Again, the intense drive to dominate the game drove both sides to challenge each other physically as the game swung back and forth with both sides fought hard to get goals. There were near misses and close shaves, with In-Sports making more breakthroughs but unfortunately, Warren, playing an effective role as the lone striker up front, was unable to put away a number of golden opportunities, which could have seen him top the goal scoring charts. Although he was subject to some physical treatment by the Lycee players in the first half, Danish came back in the second half fully recharged and a different player as he held his ground against his marker and fought for the ball as hard as he could. Zikry stepped into the goalkeeping role with confidence when called upon, and remained well-shielded by the defensive duo of Thaddeus and Irfan.
Although it took quite a while, the In-Sports boys finally managed to get their solitary second half goal through Shafihan, who completed his brace in this game with a well-taken shot assisted by a pass from Kayden. The final whistle couldn’t have come sooner and the boys trotted off the pitch with their heads held high to applause from their supporters, eagerly making a run for the Milo at the sidelines as Coach Putra delivered his debrief.
Sharing his thoughts on the game, Coach Putra was satisfied with the performance shown by his charges. “I thought the In-Sports boys showed a lot of heart and fight despite being a smaller team compared to the opponents.” When asked on what areas he felt his players had performed well and in what areas he would like to see them improve on for the next game, Coach Putra shared, “The players had a good attacking mindset but must develop more confidence and intelligence when in possession of the ball.”
Well done In-Sports Whites and all the best for the next game against St Michael’s Academy!