This was the first home game of the season against Cowplain United, a team who Whiteley Reserves had already fallen fowl of in the first game of the campaign in the Adelaide Cup losing 2-0.
This was the first time the reserves had actually played together as a team, and the general feeling in the changing room was this was a strong squad capable of giving the opposition a good game. The formation was 4-5-1 in order to stifle the opposition and limit chances - and although Whiteley started brightly from the kick off after changing ends were soon giving the ball away, a situation to be repeated too many times throughout the game.
Whiteley Reserves huffed and puffed, but it wasn't enough to prevent the first goal coming from a winger on the left, cutting inside and placing a cool lofted effort that James could only parry into his own net. Being only 1-0 down was not a concern, but as the game wore on so it became apparent Whiteley Reserves were up against it.
By half time Cowplain had managed to get 4 past a beleaguered defence and goalkeeper, with midfield looking shell shocked.
A rallying call from Captain and manager, plus one change in personnel resulted in a better second half, but still the goals were leaking in. Whiteley Reserves were struggling to take control of the game and with the defence trying to assist midfield as much as possible; it only served Cowplain by exposing gaps that could be exploited.
The game eventually finished with the scoreline settling at 7-0 - a heavy defeat, Whiteley well and truly beaten by a team better on the day.
In terms of performance, Whiteley had a better 2nd half but it came little too late - summed up with the statistics that Whiteley managed only one shot on target the entire match.
There were some shining stars in Ally and Tony, but it was not enough to save the team who are still getting used to each other and as a team - the improvements will come and so will the wins.
For his undying attitude and willingness to get stuck in, Man of the Match goes to Tony showing everyone else what needed to be done. Roll on the next game where we can do ourselves justice and show that we are a quality team with quality players.