AFC Ely’s Return to Action Ends in Another Disappointing Defeat

AFC Ely vs Wicken First

Kershaw Junior 4B Matchweek 8

AFC Ely last played on Halloween before their season was halted due to national lockdown. Unfortunately for the Ely-based outfit, there was no sign of a change in fortunes as poor form continued to blight them.

AFC Ely’s opponents on Saturday afternoon were Wicken, a team the hosts are more than familiar with having faced them multiple times this year. The Ely team emphatically dispatched Wicken in the reverse fixture, taking place in September, however, this time around, it was Wicken who completely outclassed AFC Ely. 

Just why AFC Ely find themselves in such poor form can be attributed to several factors; a complete lack of direction in the way in which the side play; a deficiency in focus extending the full 90 minutes; a supine level of fitness that is often exposed at later stages in matches and often a squad incongruous to the opposition. If AFC Ely are to rediscover their early-season form, they must also discover a way to iron out these pitfalls. 

The lack of focus laid bare in the opening five minutes as AFC Ely went one down thanks to a well-worked move from the away team. Combining down the right-hand side of the pitch, Wicken strung together a neat passage of play to open up space for a cross. The subsequent cross landed at the feet of a Wicken man who gleefully put his team ahead. 

An AFC Ely response did follow as Will Cooper lobbed the onrushing Wicken goalkeeper following a fortuitous Conor Gibbs touch that landed in the path of the eventual goal scorer. 

As the second-half came around the state of play began to worsen: the trench-like conditions were internecine and the quality of play, which was severely lacking regardless, became conspicuous. Loose touches and astray passing was ubiquitous for both teams, however, the visitors rose above the challenging conditions to heap more misery upon AFC Ely. 

Restoring their lead, Wicken’s goal came after AFC Ely failed to clear their lines after a corner kick. Picking the ball up just inside the home team’s penalty area, the Wicken player unleashed a snap shot and the ball slotted in at the near post. This left the unsighted home goalkeeper perplexed as to how the ball founds its way through. 

Similarly to the first-half, AFC Ely did respond through Ross Gray as he prevailed in a one on one with the visiting goalkeeper. Nevertheless, old problems resurfaced as AFC Ely suffered another lapse in concentration when the game was very much in the balance. With 10 minutes remaining, Wicken took the lead for the third time in the game as they poked home at the far post. AFC Ely could not respond and Wicken took the spoils. 

Full-time result: AFC Ely 2-3 Wicken First. 

AFC Ely Man of the Match: Sam Young. 

AFC Ely host West Row Gunners next weekend at the Paradise – kick off is at 2:00pm. 

Press release from AFC Ely

Written by Oliver Jennings

AFC Ely vs Wicken First
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