The Anglian Knight’s game against newcomers Rangers FC was a game of 2 halves on Saturday, with the wind direction playing a big part.
There was only 2 changes to the squad that drew 2-2 against Drayton last week with Jono Hale and Ryan Haines playing upfront instead of Lee Kiddell and Adam Mallett, who both proved to be a dynamic duo within the first 10 minutes of play.
Anglian were shooting down wind and took full advantage of it after some good build up play, leading to Ryan teeing up Jono to hammer in a dipping volley from the edge of the area to put the Knights 1-0 up!
Unfortunately, moments later Ryan challenged for a 50/50 ball where both he and the defender went for the ball, but Ryan buckled his knee ruling him out of the rest of the game. This meant Jake could step up into his position.
Anglian continued to pile on the pressure absorbing every long ball clearance from Rangers, and pushing for a second goal, which nearly came halfway through the first half. Craig Kiddell made space for himself down the left wing making his way into the penalty area he slid the ball across the 6 yard box, but Jake couldn’t drag the ball into the net from behind him. The clearance fell straight to Louie Watts whose shot on goal was sliced wide.
The chances continued to come, but none were taken. 3 corners were cleared well by the Rangers defence and Craig was denied by the goalkeeper after a killer pass from Louie through the channels.
Mark Cook was having a brilliant game in the centre of midfield winning everything and picking out some brilliant passes, eventually having an effort of his own which went just wide.
The second half soon came round though and it was Rangers who came out all guns blazing. With the wind behind them they started to create problems for the Anglian defence which had been relatively untroubled in the first half.
Adam Blake came on for Rangers and proved a handful upfront for the Anglian defence, winning numerous flick-ons for his strike partner. Rangers kept pushing throughout the half forcing some superb saves from Ellis Cass in goal, he even had to save one from a miss kick by Anglian right back Kirk Lanckmans.
Minutes later, 2 changes had to be made due to further injuries. Ian Probert came into the game with a slight groin strain and Mark Cook was forced off with a groin problem too. This paved the way for Chris Adamson and Jon Knight to try and push for a win.
No matter how hard we battled it wasn’t too long before the ball squirmed into the back of the net. Rangers won a corner which dropped straight into the 6 yard box and was prodded in. 1-1.
An Anglian win was need, but this wasn’t to happen as the reds carried on hammering away at the Anglian defence, nearly breaking it down with a route one ball, which Kirk had to chase and clear with his weaker foot. This clearance was scuffed and in a bizzare manner, hit the post, bar and came out, luckily for Kirk.
Anglian then gave a free-kick away just passed the half-way line. This was whipped in and despite the linesman waving for off-side, they were one-on-one with the goalkeeper who did brilliantly to parry the thunder shot over the bar. Despite the linesman waving for offside the referee gave the corner. The ball was whipped in a nodded in by Adam Blake at the back post. 2-1 to Rangers. A discussion with the linesman followed, but the goal stood.
Anglian then dug in deep to try and push for an equaliser, but tiredness took hold and the game turned into a midfield scrap. Justin Smith and Kierstan Foreman continued to clear the ball and in the dying embers of the game Anglian got a breakaway. A long ball was flicked on by Craig Kiddell, then Louie challenged in the air for the ball, took it passed the defender and his shot crashed into the crossbar. It wouldn’t have stood though as a free-kick was given away just before.
The game ended 2-1 Rangers thanks to some resilient second half defending by the reds. The season starts on 10th September for the Anglian Knights, but hopefully with some training we will get off to a winning start!
Anglian Home Improvements raising the standard since 1966. Visit the Anglian website for information on our EcoGain windows.