The Anglian Knight’s season kicked off on Saturday, with the Anglian Home Improvements sponsored side playing against Heartsease Athletic. The new kit was looking smart, it was a beautiful day for football, but the result wasn’t what the team wanted for the first game.
The starting line-up was similar to last season with Reece Harrison in goal, Kirk Lanckmans, Keiran Schofield, Kierstan Foreman and Kieron Orford completing the back four and a midfield force consisting of Mark Cook, Aaron Hooper, Matt Jillings, Sev Lanckmans and Josh Taubman. New signing Jack Lucas started as lone striker for the Knights.
Anglian started the game very well, with some intricate, tidy passing creating some good opportunities. Josh Taubman was linking up well with the midfield three, charging down the right wing often. This is where the first goal was created, with Matt Jillings overlapping Taubman and crossing the ball to the back post, picking out the unmarked new signing Sev Lanckmans to nod it home. 1-0
Sev Lanckmans scores on his debut
This lead didn’t last long as Heartsease replied only 5 minutes later. A long ball over the top was not dealt with by the back four and the striker wiggled away from Kierstan and Kieron to slot the ball into the bottom left corner. 1-1
Jack Lucas then had a chance to restore Anglian’s lead, but his header was straight at the keeper. The Knights eventually took the lead with a cracking finish from Aaron Hooper. The Heartsease keeper kicked the ball out, but it only went as far as Hooper who half-volleyed it over the keeper from 35 yards out. 2-1
Hooper scored a superb long range effort
Minutes before half-time was the changing point in this game as Heartsease went on to score twice to take the lead. The first was a well timed run from the striker who finished brilliantly in the one-on-one. The third goal was a case of sloppy marking and not enough closing down from Anglian as the corner was only cleared as far as the man on the edge of the box. He somehow drilled the ball through a crowd of players into the net.
Heartsease were dangerous with the long ball
The second half saw 3 changes with Scott Coombs moving to centre back and Jim Newman partnering Matt Campbell up front, as the Knights chased the game.
Heartsease continued the second half as they finished the first with a quick goal. More route one football from the team in claret saw the striker in on goal again as Anglian failed to deal with the long ball, giving him an easy finish. 4-2
Matt Campbell worked tirelessly in the second half
Anglian did have the majority of possession from now on, but failed to find the final ball. Jim Newman had the best opportunity of the second half after some superb play by Taubman on the right and a pin point cross from Hooper, but Newman’s header flew over the bar.
Heartsease utilised the long ball and deserved their win
Heartsease continued to counter with the long ball and scored three more goals. All were a ball over the top and the strikers were on fine form, finishing all of their opportunities. 7-2 was the final score and the Knights will be deeply disappointed with this. Although for spells they played well and the scoreline maybe flatters Heartsease, they were deserved winners for taking their chances.