23 February 2015

The John Lyon School - Senior House Football

Only one team were ever going to win this, weren't they? As usual, we'll be looking at this through these eyes. That is to say, a Norwood perspective.

Norwood do have a good team: a lot of their members are also in the first XI. Against Vaughan, Norwood lined up in a 4-1-2-2-1 formation. Norwood started emphatically against Vaughan, with Robert Gibbons striking the post in the second minute. Three minutes later, Marcus Tighe played in a ball, and Jake Lamour-Johnson's touch wasn't powerful enough, although it was on target. Lamour-Johnson then had another shot, and it seemed as if there was something of a bus on the Vaughan goal line, as Sam Clague managed to clear it.

Then, in the 11th minute, against the run of play, the ball was played up to Madhav Radia, who slotted it in the back of net, but it was ruled out for offside. Despite not conceding, Norwood's response was to pepper the Vaughan penalty area. In the fourteenth minute, Alex Aristides turned into Steven Gerrard, with a brilliant outside-of-boot pass up to Jake Lamour-Johnson, who was the Daniel Sturridge in this move. 1-0. The reference comes to an incident, somewhat oddly, covered on this blog before, which you can find here.

Solly Mathias in the Norwood goal finally had something to do in the 17th minute, as Madhav Radia went for the spectacular, and Mathias did very well to tip it over the bar. Vaughan were now getting frustrated, and began an almighty siege on the Norwood goal. But Norwood clung on.

Elsewhere, Moore took on Butler. Moore also had a sketchy win, winning 1-0.

On to round two then. Butler against Norwood; Moore against Vaughan. Norwood made five changes, but it was Butler with the first opportunity. Poor refereeing was abound as the referee seemed to start the game with only one team on the pitch. Norwood were asleep, and Dishanth Satkunarajah went through on goal from the kick off, but Solly Mathias denied him.

That was as good as Butler ever got. Norwood won a penalty one minute later when Jake Lamour-Johnson was felled in the box. He duly slotted it home for his second goal of the season and a 1-0 Norwood lead. Three minutes later, things almost reached, in the words of René Meulensteen, "rock bottom", when Robert Gibbons's corner for Norwood almost went straight in. Butler's defensive shambles continued. How they were only one down after 10 minutes is anyone's guess. A slightly fed-up Lamour-Johnson had a shot from 40 yards... which went in!! 2-0!!

That really took the wind out of Butler's sails. In the fourteenth minute, Norwood pressed forwards and were four on two. Rohit Almani aimed a cross in, and whilst Marcus Bettinelli may be inspirational, the Butler goalkeeper seemed to copy his mistakes too, spilling it, but Alex Aristides "got his legs on the wrong feet" (Chris Kamara, 2014) and couldn't fire it in.

Aristides made up for it three minutes later however. A corner was taken quickly by Shahbaz Ahmed, and found the unmarked Alex Aristides. But he didn't rush it. He was patient. But he took his opportunity this time. 3-0.

Jake Lamour-Johnson celebrates his hat trick.
Butler came close when Keval Patel's wayward clearance struck Moscope Okunoren and almost went in the goal, but it was off target. Things got even worse at the other end, however, when Laurence Lau handballed it from a Norwood corner, and Jake Lamour-Johnson made no errors, converting his second penalty, to bag himself a hat trick. 4-0.

The Butler defence did have one moment in the sun as the goalkeeper made a great double save to deny Lamour-Johnson and Jonathan Amah. But then, following an awful clearance, a corner is awarded to Norwood. The goalkeeper takes it, but clears it out straight to Robert Gibbons. He does a "youn' Patrick Roberts 'ere, twistin' and turnin'" (Jim McGullion, 2015) before slotting it in for the goal he deserves. 5-0, and that's how it finished.

Elsewhere, Vaughan picked up their first win, beating Moore 2-1.


Norwood had practically got it in the bag, although nothing was certain. All Norwood needed to do was avoid defeat at Moore and they would win regardless. Moore needed to beat Norwood by a four-goal margin, and hope that Vaughan hadn't worked miracles against Butler. Vaughan needed to win by a six-goal margin and pray Norwood had lost.

So, Moore vs Norwood. Norwood made just two changes from the side who smashed Butler. Yet again, Norwood started slowly, as Mathias had to make a great save in the second minute. Following a slip up by a Moore player, though, Aristides was straight down the other end, and fired one at keeper Matt Merriman, who had to deny Aristides, Wrench, and Lamour-Johnson in a great triple save. 

But all great heroics must come to an end, and Lamour-Johnson slotted home in the fifth minute. 1-0. Shot after shot peppered both keepers, before Lamour-Johnson was felled by Andrew Odeyemi in the eighth minute on the edge of the box. The free kick strikes Niall O'Connell's hand in the penalty box, but the referee lets play continue, despite the protests of the Norwood dugout. Alex Aristides tries his own Patrick Roberts impression, and is unlucky to miss. In the eleventh minute, Robert Gibbons chips goalkeeper Merriman, and it falls for Shahbaz Ahmed, who blasts it skywards. Two minutes later, yet another O'Connell handball goes unnoticed. And Aristides's resulting shot goes behind.

Finally, Norwood break through. An inviting ball across the face of goal by Jake Lamour-Johnson is tapped in by Robert Gibbons, and it's 2-0!! Substitute Avtar Rai misses just two minutes later, before the referee decides he's had enough. 2-0. Norwood go home champions.

Elsewhere, Vaughan beat Butler 5-0. They failed to do what they needed to do in any case to win the league.


So, Norwood win. Unsurprisingly. We'll leave you with the unofficial Norwood song, set to "Viva El Fulham" by Tony Rees.

Down the Norwood road we're burning with ambition;
Winning's our mission: it's where we wanna be.
And if you've seen what a team we've got this season,
You know the reason we will win easily!
But first we're heading down the Sudbury way
To show the world that we can really play!

Oh this year, we're gonna win the cup!
And viva el Norwood!
And next year, we're going, going, up!
And viva el Norwood!
Adam Jones is a wonder, that's for sure!
And viva el Norwood!
And Ryan, well, do we need say more?
IT'S NORWOOD POR FAVOR!

Mr Jones, he used to hide behind his desk-y,
But soon he will be the proudest in the land.
He'll be thinking of his Norwood boys in green-y
When he'll be reading the scorelines in his hand!
And Norwood House is steady like a rock,
We are going, going, going, TO THE TOP!!

Oh this year, we're gonna win the cup!
And viva el Norwood!
And next year, we're going, going, up!
And viva el Norwood!
Adam Jones is a wonder, that's for sure!
And viva el Norwood!
And Ryan, well, do we need say more?
IT'S NORWOOD POR FAVOR!

There's a way to smash those houses to pieces:
Attack 'em senseless, we're winning every day.
And from Jonesy out to Ryan, 'lex, and Jake-y,
We'll all be giving as much as we can give!
We're gonna keep on topping the score charts,
And make the other houses walk on coals!

Oh this year, we're gonna win the cup!
And viva el Norwood!
And next year, we're going, going, up!
And viva el Norwood!
Adam Jones is a wonder, that's for sure!
And viva el Norwood!
And Ryan, well, do we need say more?
IT'S NORWOOD POR FAVOR!

La la la, la-la-la-la la!
And viva el Norwood!
La la la, la-la-la-la la!
And viva el Norwood!
Adam Jones is a wonder, that's for sure!
And viva el Norwood!
And Ryan, well, do we need say more?
IT'S NORWOOD POR FAVOR!

IT'S NORWOOD POR FAVOR!

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