This was a ridiculous game with a final scoreline more akin to an Under 10 game than Under 18 one. Eleven goals in ninety minutes suggests that either the attacking play was sensational or the defending was horrible. As far as this encounter goes both were true. Balham’s Achilles heel was set pieces which accounted for four of the six goals conceded. RPV had some very lively, skillful front players but they didn’t have to work hard enough for two thirds of their goals. Balham will need to improve on the basics, such as not losing markers at free kicks and corners, if they want to avoid score lines like this in the future. At the other end of the pitch though Balham looked equally lively and skillful themselves, if not more so and had the game continued for longer, with Balham in the ascendancy late on, a different result may well have materialised. As it was a brace of goals from the excellent Gus Colfer and Andre Cruz-Rosa and a fine finish from the equally excellent Josh Hammett were not enough to stave off defeat.
Team: Gardner, Vancooten, Chen, Thompson, Fallowfield, Cloud(capt), Bakare, Simpson-Last, Colfer, Hammett, Cruz-Rosa
Goal Scorers: Colfer(2), Cruz-Rosa(2), Hammett