It was a successful start in what turned out to be an intense first game for FSA PRO London.
FSA’s first fixture in the CAT 1 League against worthing was a competitive affair right from the first whistle. Both Worthing and FSA were competing and matching each others intensity across the pitch. FSA looked to be the team starting to take control of the game through squeezing the opponents high up the pitch and dictating the second balls. Some early signs of success were starting to show as FSA managed to produce four or five good crosses into the box but to no avail. It didn’t take long before the ball landed at the feet of right back Denzel Akeyeampong who had managed to overlap winger Errikos Bianakou deep into the opponents half, a hard driven cross perfectly placed between the Worthing goalkeeper and the defence allowed number 9 Dominic Fischer to arrive and finish the ball from close range.
9 Minutes gone 1-0 to FSA. The success of the early goal boosted the confidence of the team however they knew they still had a long way to go in this game. Worthing now a goal down started to apply themselves and limited FSA’s opportunities. That wouldn’t stop FSA as we continued to try and break down the opposition. The next half an hour saw FSA keeping possession of the ball well and provoking the Worthing players into pulling out of shape. Combinations with the Fullbacks and Wingers was working really well and the space created out wide saw left sided winger Mark Soares manage to beat his player and deliver numerous dangerous crosses. Opposite winger Errikos Biankou came close to increasing our lead after some good movement but a misplaced header left the score unchanged. Defensively FSA stayed compact and vigilant, only allowing a couple of long free kicks enter the box before being claimed well by goal keeper Thierri Manley. The main battle was being had in the midfield where the trio of Cameron Ashia, Charlie Sisarello and Lee Quincey were all working relentlessly to win back possession and link up with our forward players.In the 42nd minute a counter attack saw Worthing manage to evade our midfield before playing a dangerous looking through ball behind our defence however Thierri Manley managed to push the ball out for a corner before being collided with by the Worthing striker. Thankfully FSA goalkeeper Thierri was okay. Worthing took the corner quickly and managed to beat our defenders to the ball and head it goal bound but right back Denzel Akeyeampong headed the ball clear off the line in an act of great defending. The Score remained the same until half time
“I’m very happy with the performance from the team today, they showed great character and discipline to hold off a very physical and determined Worthing. Very bright individual performances supported by the squads cohesion meant that we were probably the deserved 2-0 winners of this fixture."
After the half time team talk led by Managers Mark Smith and Jacques Michell the boys understood their task. Be disciplined and ruthless. Worthing came out quickly knowing they had to chase the game. Their tactics hadn’t changed and they were playing the ball quickly and directly up to their wingers to face our defenders 1v1. It looked as if their resilience was going to pay off when a ball slipped into their striker saw Worthings first clear cut chance of the game open up, Worthings number 9 had got behind of the defence and just had the keeper to beat, Thierri Manley stood his ground brilliantly making a smart save down to his left to preserve the lead. A major let off and reminder that this game was not done.
The second half continued with FSA now sitting in and protecting their lead while Worthing controlled possession. This worked into FSA’s hands allowing us to play counter attacking football. When the ball was won back by the midfield and clever pass over the defence saw another chance for Dominic Fischer to score, after a great first touch he managed to drive into the penalty area creating space by beating his man only for a last ditch block by the opponents centre back took it away from goal. Unfortunately FSA’s Number 9 ended up injuring himself in the process and was forced into a change. George Hughes came on and with almost his first touch managed to turn in Evan Kelly’s attempt at goal from the resulting corner! An instant impact in the 70th Minute giving the squad the breathing space they needed.
It was a tense 20 minutes following that with Goalkeeper Thierri Manley forced into making two more outstanding 1v1 saves. With the clock running down and Worthing getting more frustrated FSA found themselves able to player higher up the pitch by winning fouls and staying compact. FSA were smart by managing the tempo of the game playing into areas and forcing Worthing to start from deep, consequently Worthing tried to commit men forward but left themselves open to attack. A good regain in possession saw Errikos Biankou drive into the opens half with the ball a combination of passes led to the ball being played out to the left for late substitute Marcus Anwar who carried the ball into the box and managed to find an excellent cross for the arrival or midfielder Errikos who had continued his run, unfortunately the ball was just out of reach and whistled across the face of the goal.
The game continued well into injury time but the team set up so well Worthing struggled to create any more chances and the game finished 2-0 to FSA PRO!