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  • Writer's pictureRobert Austin

RDSL Division 3 Match Report (17/12/2023): Hype Train FC vs. Core FC

Welcome aboard the home of Hype Train Football Club. Here, you can read the match reports from the train's outing across Saturday & Sunday League action throughout the 2023/24 season, with the team competing in the East Berkshire Football League (EBFL) and the Reading & District Sunday League (RDSL). All aboard.

Match Report: Hype Train FC

Date: Sunday 17th December 2023

Competition: RDSL Division 3 (Game 10)

Opposition: Core FC

Location: Calcot Recreation Ground, Reading, RG31 4XD

Final Score: Hype Train FC 3-2 Core FC

Match Report:

The train's encounter against Core FC was our 27th competitive match of the 2023/24 season, with the team hosting Core in Reading & District Sunday League's Division 3 at Calcot Recreation Ground. This was the second time we have faced Core in league action this season, running out 4-3 winners against our opposition in our away fixture in October.

There hadn't been a faster start to a game this season at Hype Train that our home tie against Core, with the opening goal arriving 45 seconds into the game! Directly from kick-off, the team applied pressure with the ball eventually falling out to Lewis Small at full back, who clipped a pass towards Mitchell Saunders on the right flank, with Liam Skidmore of Core defending well to win a throw deep into Core's defensive half. The resulting throw saw Small launch a rocket into the box which was not only controlled well by Ciaran Carolan inside the six-yard-box, but the Forward was able to turn and get a shot off with his left foot, with the shot nutmegging the opposition goalkeeper to give the team a lightning quick start.

The squad then repelled a few notable Core chances, first from a long throw during the 8th minute which Robert Austin would collect, then drop, only to collect again from the initial header that Core won inside the box - with a free-kick being awarded when the ball was kicked out of Austin's hands on the way into the goal. With 12 minutes on the clock, Austin then denied a Core midfielder when one-on-one, whilst at the other end of the pitch a series of corner kicks bombarded Core's goal, without an end result.

The lead was further established in the 15th minute for the team when Small and Joe Sawyer did well at the back to clear a lofted through ball by Core, which led to Jenson Mansel having time in midfield to bring the ball down, only for his pass down the line to be intercepted and falling loose in the middle of the pitch - Saunders was on hand though to use his body to win the ball, before putting the ball through the legs of a pressing midfielder, before setting Carolan through one-on-one, and ultimately calmly finishing past the Core goalkeeper to extend the lead to 2-0 after beating the offside trap.

On the stroke of the 40th minute another hat-trick for Carolan was complete, and started when Small picked up the ball after a dangerous Core cross on the right evaded their jumping winger by inches, with Small giving the ball off to Mansel, who on the turn flighted a cross-field ball over to Padraig Gorman on the left wing. Toying with his full back marker with nice skill, Gorman would eventually cut the ball to Carolan, who then from outside the penalty area found the bottom corner of the goal, with Core's goalkeeper unable to meet the ball as the effort seemingly ghosted through the shot-stopper on its way into the net - with this particular strike being Carolan's 17th so far this season in Reading & District Sunday League competitive action.

Into the second half, we began with another goal in the first minute of the half, this time in favour of Core who spent the second period in favour of the wind. Starting when a team attack broke down, Core broke quickly on the counter with the decisive through ball getting the most unfortunate bobble when Sawyer tried to win the ball, allowing Noah Hodge to glide through on goal and pick out the bottom corner expertly, bringing the score back to 3-1 with 44 minutes of the half still to play.

With 50 minutes on the clock, the game was suddenly on a knife edge when Core were able to grab a second goal. A long throw by Small was cleared away, as was the follow-up cross by the same player, which set out another Core counter, with Hodge picking up a flick via the head of Adam Skidmore, before running at the team's defensive line. Backing off the Forward, Hodge ran to the D of the penalty area before again picking out the bottom right corner with a composed finish to put the game on the brink.

Looking to make sure our hard work in the first-half wasn't undone, the game did settle, with Sawyer unlucky not to find the back of the net via his head from a Carolan corner, whilst Gorman was dangerous on the left on several occasions, whilst at the other end, Austin was called into a multitude of saves, the best coming when from a corner kick the goalkeeper has spread himself well to collect the ball when rifled at his chest from close range from a Core corner. The game would draw its conclusion when Core won a corner at the death, and despite much pressure from the visitors, the team cleared our lines to spark the full-time whistle, and all three points in RDSL Division 3.

Next up for the train, we will be beginning 2024 with a brace of back-to-back away days on 4G surfaces, first as we travel out to Burnham Grammar School to take on Frontline FC in EBFL's Premier Division on Saturday 6th January 2024, before we are away again at Give Back FC Reserves in the quarter-finals of the RDSL Industrial Cup on Sunday 7th January 2024.

Thoughts from Club Secretary, Robert Austin:

"After the team were put through torture from our match officials on Saturday, we needed to recover and end the calendar year on a positive note, and the team didn't disappoint in what was a game of two halves.

The wind played a big factor as it helped pen in one team per half, with the team cruising in the first-half with a good performance. We got our goals early and took a 3-0 lead into the break having played some good football. Core had a couple sniffs at goal, but we restricted them well and made the most of our chances at the right times. As for the second-half, Core came back straight away to hit us with a brace of early second-half goals on the counter, which took a comfortable 3-0 lead to a game that remained on the edge until the final whistle. Core really came at us and probed, and we had to dig in deep at times, defending well and making a few vital saves to deny them an equaliser. What we did show though in a frustrating second-half, was a good resolve as we looked to secure the points against the wind, and ultimately the win was the only objective as we're looking to put as much pressure on the top of the table as possible.

I'd like to send my best wishes to Liam Skidmore at Core, who took a nasty fall in the second-half and had to be dragged off with injury - the whole team here are hoping the injury bad and you can recover in no time. We'd also like to wish Core the best for the rest of the season, I must sound like a broken record but they're such a credit to the RDSL and Sunday League football, and hope they rise up the table as the season goes on."

Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad

Manager: Robert Austin

Starting 11:

GK: Robert Austin

DEF: Lewis Small

DEF: Joe Sawyer

DEF: Kie Longmate

DEF: Leo Pereira (Heinau 77')

MID: Benjamin Heinau (Mmanga 46')

MID: Jenson Mansel

MID: Cory McManus (Saunders 67')

MID: Mitchell Saunders (Janjua 46')

MID: Padraig Gorman

FOR: Ciaran Carolan


SUB: Waqar Janjua

SUB: Anwar Mmanga

Goals & Assists:

Goal 1: Carolan (goal), Small (assist)

Goal 2: Carolan (goal), Saunders (assist)

Goal 3: Carolan (goal), Gorman (assist)

Want to know more about The Hype Train?

The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in general football and 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. We won both Goal of the Season Awards in the Berkshire and County FA regions, with Callum Parr-Jones winning the Berks & Bucks FA award, whilst Martin King won the PlaySport UK award.

In 2021, we formed the Reading Sunday Social League (RSSL), a competitive Sunday League involving 8 teams in its debut season. During the 2021/22 season, we won our first-ever trophy, lifting the East Berkshire Football League's Presidents Cup!

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.

You can follow us on Twitter, Like us on Facebook, follow Hype Train FC on Instagram, subscribe to our YouTube channel for exclusive content, visit our club's dedicate website, or visit our website here at

Believe The Hype!


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