Pre-Season Match Report (12/09/2020): Stoke Poges Saints FC Reserves vs. Hype Train FC
Hype Train FC were back on the road in our home Blue and Gold Kitlocker kit as we continued our return to the field, continuing our 2020/21 pre-season campaign by visiting EBFL Division 2 outfit, Stoke Poges Saint's Reserves outfit. Read the match report from our sixth away trip in the off-season as we made the visit to the Recration Ground in Stoke Poges. All aboard.
Match Report: Stokes Poges Saints FC Reserves vs. Hype Train FC:
Date: 12th September 2020
Competition: Pre-Season Friendly
Opposition: Stoke Poges Saints FC
Location: Bells Hill Recreation Ground, Stoke Poges, SL2 4EG
Final Score: Stokes Poges Saints FC Reserves 0-0 Hype Train FC
Photographer: Sam Austin (@HypeTrainSam)
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With the Stoke Poges first team playing before us on the same pitch, with conditions bone dry for a 2pm kick-off, we played our sixth consecutive away game on a dry, bobbly pitch against the Stoke Poges FC Reserve outfit, with this the third encounter between a Hype Train team and our Ultimate XI opponents.
With the game a slow burner in the early moments, both teams grew into the occasion and it was midway through the first-half when the chances started flowing. With the game ultimate finishing goalless, we had a dozen chances to take the lead throughout the first-half, with Callum Fox-Spence, Phil Newport, Martin King and Sammy Seville all going agonisingly close. A set-piece that flashed across the back-post into the feet of Fox-Spence, unable to convert from close range, was the best effort.
Stokes Poges best chance to score in the first-half came when an attacking player ran unopposed into the penalty area, with Jack Roche making himself large to deny two shots, with the defence eventually scrambling the ball clear.
The second-half saw a host of chances from both sides, with two big chances arriving within minutes of the restart. Phil Newport powered through on goal and hit a low shot that hit the underside of the goalkeeper's legs, with the ball rebounding off the post and rolling across the face of goal and out. Sammy Seville was then trough clear but chose not to shoot on his left-foot, instead turning back and teeing up Sam Bolwell to strike from range, drawing another save from their Goalkeeper, Steve Gibson.
The energetic Dom Clarke caused problems for the Poges right-back when he was introduced in the second-half. Clarke drew two impressive saves from Gibson, with Clarke striking two fierce strikes that were expertly saved.
With the visiting side looking for a winner, the ball just wouldn't go in and we crafted further opportunities to score, with Fox-Spence's left-footed half-volley going centimetres wide of the far-post from just inside the area. The last big chance fell to Martin King after Clarke fissed in a low ball with King's outside-of-the-foot effort flashing agonisingly over the bar to see out our latest pre-season friendly with our first-ever draw in non-competitive action.
Thoughts from Player Manager, Robert Austin:
"Leading up to this game it was a trio of narrow defeats against very good, physical sides, with a lot of the goals we've conceded being our own doing. We've been working on bedding in new players and being more compact as a unit. We managed to limit Stoke Poges to very little this afternoon and were solid defensively.
At the other end of the field it should have been another story. The ball just wouldn't go in, despite a dozen or more clear cut chances. Yes, we couldn't score in a brothel this afternoon but what is important is creating the chances. That's key as we still start having our cake and eating it sooner rather than later as long as we continue grinding to create. All credit to Steve Gibson in goal for Stoke Poges though, he made some fantastic saves to keep his side in the contest.
Today was about resetting and applying new tactics, so nobody can complain. I thought my team played their hearts out and on another day win the game with some clear daylight. Nevertheless, it's another move in a positive direction as we gear up for our first pre-season game in Reading in our seventh attempt when we travel to Harchester Hawks next week.
Best of luck to Stoke Poges' Reserves in EBFL Division 2 next season - you boys dug in well and weathered a lot of storms and had an inspired performance from your makeshift Goalkeeper. We're looking forward to the return fixtures against your first team in EBFL Division one next season!"
Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad
GK: Jack Roche
DEF: Rod Stevens
DEF: Martin King (C) - (Sawyer 46')
DEF: Marin Pendov
DEF: Robert Austin
MID: Sammy Seville (Slater 51')
MID: Chris Marshall (Bolwell 75')
MID: Sam Bolwell (Azad 51')
MID: Callum Fox-Spence
MID: Jamie Carter (Clarke 51')
FOR: Phil Newport (King 70')
SUB: Sami Azad
SUB: Joe Sawyer
SUB: Dominic Clarke
SUB: Hugh Slater
Want to know more about The Hype Train?
The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in Fantasy sports reporting, starting with Fantasy Premier League (FPL), before expanding to MLS Fantasy coverage in 2018.
We pride ourselves in providing beautiful graphics, statistics, in-depth analytical reporting and free weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb rankings tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review games, live sport, and professional wrestling.
In 2019, Hype Train Football Club was formed, becoming the first Fantasy Football website to take to the field. HTFC is a socially active team across social and web channels, providing regular match highlights, match reports, comprehensive player statistics and unique player profiles.
The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog' in 2016 by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), and were again shortlisted as a finalist in 2019 in the 'Best Fantasy Football Blog' category.