Wyrley Meerkats 1 Leek Town ladies 0

T ‘was the turn of our other Northern foe Leek Town Ladies to visit Wyrley Juniors stadium for their 2nd week on the trot. The previous week had seen the scalp taken of the Pumas in a hard fought battle, The Meerkats had to be ready. The morning got off to a shaky start with Gaffer Youd being on the receipt of a phone call from an irate referee. It later transpired that the referee who resided in Great Wyrley couldn’t locate Wyrley Juniors and decided to go back home! Bearing in mind our opposition managed to find us all the way from Leek!! The referee finally turned up with an expression of a bulldog chewing a wasp – he wasn’t a happy chappy. This was going to be a double battle against Leek Town and the referee, made even harder with news of the Enforcer aka Ellie and the Bouncer aka Mollie being absent . Mention goes out to by better half Emma and her dad for helping untangle the respect barrier. It was like an episode from the Krypton factor the only thing missing was the colourful jumpsuits! Maybe next week?!?!

The gaffer gave the starting line up of Skye, Millie, Abbie & Sophie at the back, Erin, Mya, Faith in the middle with Eloise and Chloe leading the line. Katie and Melissa started on the bench but as always were utilised during the game. They were all briefed that they would have to roll their sleeves up and dig deep, we all knew that this was going to be a ‘War’ . … huh…..yeah, what is it good for? Absolutely nothing….

The whistle sounded and the Meerkats came ‘running up that hill’ and charged toward the enemy. ‘Ain’t no mountain high enough’ to keep the Meerkats from their objective and the tackles from both sets of players were fierce. The Meerkats were zipping the ball around trying to create the killer ball for Sonic or the Engine to feed on. Mya was mesmerising the Leeky defence with her dazzling footwork and mazy runs and was only thwarted by overzealous tackling. This took its toll on Mya and had to be replaced earlier than anticipated by Katie ‘Peggy’ Mitchell. Peggy settled in on the left wing ensuring that their defence was put ‘under pressure’ and supported the Meerkat defence when needed. Faith ‘Mouse’ Youd was also battling hard on the opposite flank spraying passes through to Sonic. As always the ‘General’ was leading by example in the heart of the battlefield and her battling looked reminiscent of ‘kung fu fighting’ giving as good as she got – They’re hard in Pelsall…. Erin saved the Meerkats from going one down with a lung busting run to thwart the onrushing Leek attacker with a perfectly timed tackle. The crowd (Meerkat supports) recognised this extra effort with deserved applause and this is why she is our Captain – always willing to ‘walk 500 miles’. The three degrees were having a great game quashing and quelling the attacks. Abbie ‘Delap’ was using her massiveeeee throws as a major weapon in the Meerkat armoury to pepper the Leeky defence, whilst Mille ‘Stonewall’ and Sophie ‘The Terminator’ marshalled the line. Skye ‘Loco’ Lee was having a strong performance between the sticks with a marked improvement on her goal kicks – obviously the Wednesday night training with Sir Keith is paying off! Eloise ‘The Engine’ who is always looking for the through pass managed to deliver a precision ball to Chloe to which she tucked away after out muscling the Leeky defence, great timing as the halftime whistle blew shortly after. Fair play to Chloe who returned after a bout of illness and was clearly not 100%, her endeavour was faultless!

The Meerkats gathered themselves and refuelled whilst listening to the Gaffer. The girls were briefed to continue to go what they had done in the previous half and to try and create more opportunities. Melissa ‘Mini’ Cooper replaced Faith on the wing and wasn’t long before she ‘knocked three times’ on the goal – all good strong shots but just wide of the mark. She gave a gutsy performance as she is the smallest on the pitch and showed tenacity and guile in her tackling. The majority of the second half was played in the middle of the park with very few sorties into either end. The tackling was still fierce, but what do you expect Northerners are hard!!! Mya showed great heart by coming back into the fray to replace ‘Peggy’ and was using all her repertoire to try and carve out an opening. A foul conceded by the Meerkat captain presented a massive threat! However, Safe hands Skye palmed the ball away to raptures of applause – definitely a match saving save. The happy chappy blew for full time and the Meerkats celebrated their narrow but deserved victory.

Thanks to Mark Mitchell for running the line in his tight fitting lycra trousers and thanks to Messieurs Waddilove, Lee and Marlow for assisting in dismantling the goals. If I forgot someone, tough!

We (both teams and parents) congregated in the function room to sample the wears that Trish had kindly cooked. Nice to sit down and reflect on the match in a comfortable surrounding – thanks Trish.

All girls played really well, but I’d like to note a couple of exceptional performances:
Sophie Marlow hadn’t trained for a couple of weeks due to illness this coupled with an ongoing foot complaint only adds to the recognition she should get for the weekend performance.
Skye Lee has recently agreed to trial the goal keeping training with Sir Keith on Wednesday evenings and whether this is the main reason for her performance or extra work with her dad – who knows but it’s great to see the improvement!!

Managers Player for her endeavour and attitude was awarded to Skye lee
Parent Player was awarded to Sophie Marlow for an exceptional game – hope you had a good birthday

The pitch looked impeccable and this comment was mirrored by the travelling team, a testament to the Wyrley faithful!!

Things to work on
Holding the defensive line
Identifying when to come out of the defensive line to support the attack

Great entertainment, better than watching the Wolves!!


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