Penzance Reserves 5, St Day 3rds 0
Joint Manager Daz Smith reflects on Saturday’s win over St Day.
In our third pre-season friendly, we welcomed St Day Thirds to Penlee Park.
Our instructions to the lads were to press high and hunt the ball in packs in order to gain possession higher up the field, and we changed our formation from 4-4-2 to a 3-5-2. This was partly due to us being overrun in midfield against St Ives, but also because we had three fast defenders with a CDM sitting in front to control the game.
In the pre-match warm-up the lads seemed to be in high spirits as we could sense an eagerness to start fast with a real intensity in our rondo. The lads didn’t disappoint and we flew out of the blocks grabbing an early goal to settle the nerves. Alfie Beard was in the right place at the right time to bundle the ball home from close range. Minutes later, after a foul on the edge of the St Day box, Tyler Dayus stepped up to rifle his shot into the top corner giving us a two goal lead.
The lads’ hunger and speed of play was causing St Day real problems as we looked composed in midfield. Our CDM James Payne was gifting our creative players freedom to express themselves without concern, and we had total control in the middle of the park. The movement of Alfie, Tyler Smith, Elliott Rudge and Haidar Fadli, and their willingness to run in behind, caused St Day issues before Haidar’s square ball handed Elliot a tap-in. Going into half-time we could have been five or six clear, but the St Day keeper was making some top saves as we peppered the goal.
Our half time team-talk was relatively straight forward... Keep the ball moving, but don’t force the play. The second half was much the same, even when we made so many changes. Everyone stuck to the plan and we demonstrated some excellent passing and movement. A delightful floated through ball from Sam Payne played Haidar in to continue his rich vein of form with an emphatic finish into the far corner. St Day didn’t really trouble us defensively as we worked well as a unit and all did out individual jobs. A late goal from Alfie saw him grab his second after some top build up play as we looked to see the game out, whilst keeping a clean sheet.
So lots of positives to take away, including everyone getting a good amount of game time. We we looked composed in possession and created a lot of chances, and there were more voices and communication on the pitch.
Our Man of the Match could have gone to a number of players but in the end Tyler Dayus claimed the award for his reading of the game, vision and all round contribution to the match.
Considering we have only had two training sessions with the lads, and three friendlies, we are moving in the right direction, and will only improve with time.