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Academy Match Reports


1st Nov 2021

Featured Fixture

Future Football Elite U11 vs Bloomsbury U11 Gold


This 4-6 victory in the JPL was reward for their remarkable recovery, coming back from 1-0 down, regaining control of the game to win after letting slip a two goal for it to be 4-4 in the final quarter.
Our sixth and final goal from Freddie Littner, an incredible individual effort to secure the victory for Bloomsbury, latching onto the loose ball, skipping past multiple opposition before toe-poking the ball into the bottom corner. Jubilation for the Blooms.
Really impressive was the amount of chances the boys were able to create from the first whistle to the last, even with many players playing in unorthodox positions. This is something we’ve struggled with in previous weeks, so really pleasing to see our penetration of defensive lines. However, the talented group of U11s still need to make improvements on the quality of their finishes, they made what could’ve been a heavy score-line, a much tighter affair by failing to capitalise in a number of situations. On the whole though, the U11s were really positive from start to finish, every single player showed some real glimpses of creativity on the ball, as well as an astute understanding of fuses in the final quarters, using lots of combinations to break through FFE.

Bloomsbury U7 Gold vs Bloomsbury U8 Gold

Big brother won the sibling war in the CYL as Bloomsbury’s U7 marginally lost to their elders.
Playing against a year up, the boys should be proud of themselves, as they haven’t spent much time playing in this format. There’s much for these boys to learn and experience, and they will progress leaps and bounds this season as there’s an excess of untapped potential. To put in a strong performance like they did, against faster and stronger players who have been involved in this format, is telling that the only way is up.
However, the boys do have to become more aggressive when working to regain the ball, in this game we tended to wait for the opposition to dribble towards us, but when that situation was reversed – in our 1v1s we were brave and attempted as many as possible. One of which was Guy Morgan, who didn’t look like he was playing against an older team whatsoever, taking the challenge in his stride. Always brave when receiving the ball, always looking to create 1v1s and use his brilliant dribbling skills. At halftime, he even suggested changing the formation to a diamond, something the manager absolutely adored: a young player with the confidence and the ability to understand changes to make when the team needed it.

Bloomsbury U7 Gold vs Crouch End Vampire U8

This was another tough game against older, bigger, stronger and faster opposition this weekend, and though they lost, once again the boys held their own. Their press was much more efficient this game, with a better intensity. Guy Morgan once again took the game to the opposition, in every single of his 1v1s he was so tricky to tackle as he blended speed and technique beautifully.
It’s extremely important that without the ball, every player is working for the team, and with the ball, we attack as a coherent unit, as today we learnt the consequences of when that doesn’t happen.
A learning curve to overcome for sure, but doesn’t take away from the positives – we battled hard and created many opportunities.

Bloomsbury U8 Black vs Active FC U8

Bloomsbury’s U8s victory in the CYL was one that had a ton of happy returns, quite literally too.
One of which being the U7’s who contributed immensely: Guy Morgan who was impeccable going forward and Rocco Becci who was superb in not only one but two positions, moving forward to partner Ori in a back two from goal-keeper.
The second half is where the team came to life, and is credit to the maturity in which they recognised and addressed their areas for improvement: positionally making sure all passing lanes were covered, therefore allowing the opposition little space but also being sure to accelerate the intensity of their attacking efforts, with Man-of-the-match Ori Roukin summing it up superbly, “we were very good defending because they had no space to work with”.
His performance on his 8th birthday saw some stunning passing that lead to chances and goals balanced with a complete defensive performance that protected the team and set the base for their attacking threat to backboard off. A birthday to remember!

Bloomsbury U8 Gold vs Sport London e Benfica U8

Goals from Pax, Majid and Laurie were not enough to earn the U8s three points as they lost narrowly to Sport London e Benfica in the CYL.
With it being half-term our manpower was handicapped and meant we were unable to maintain the usual high intensity of our performances. With that being said, those on the pitch gave their absolute all, and was fantastic to see, especially considering the ease of recent weeks as the team required and were due a challenge, we carried the goalscoring threat we’ve had all season despite the low numbers.
Shoutout to Matthias who battled admirably throughout in what was a very physical game. He took numerous knocks, but showed incredible determination and toughness to never let the opposition overrun him. When in possession, in which he regained the ball more than any player on the pitch, Mathias always chose the correct option, whether it was finding a teammate or travelling with the ball himself.

Bloomsbury U9 Gold vs Sport London e Benfica U9

From the first minute, the boys attacked the game with a ridiculous level of intensity, exploiting the gaps in transition after winning the ball high and wasting no time to launch the rapid and effective counter-attacks.
The game started 5v5 but after the rest of our cavalry arrived, Bloomsbury scored their first and never looked back. Riku Takami opened proceedings as his sweetly connected volley forced a save from the keeper that he would react first to and pounce to score the rebound. Kurt McDermott, who’s aggressive pressing forced a number of opposition turnovers, one of which led him 1v1 with the defender who he skipped by with ease only to add the keeper to his hit list, bypassing him as well, made it two. A seriously stylish goal from someone whose application and attitude has greatly impressed the coach this season. The opposition started the second half exactly how they wanted, responding promptly after the restart, but after some scrappy play outside the box, Christian Gyabaah crisply curled the ball into the bottom corner. The penultimate goal was pounced upon by Santi Caicedo, but the pick of the day was the last of the game. The boys did exactly what they was asked to do, create something different and unexpected from their set-piece situations, as Deniro cut the ball to the outside of the box where it was finished strongly into the bottom corner for Christian’s second of the day. The iceman that he is, may not have smiled for either of his strikes, but definitely showcased his efficiency in front of goal.
Man-of-the-match however, as selected by his peers, was Captain Deniro Elleston. Our little gem had another strong performance, his press resistance was sensational, and he constantly bought his teammates into the game. He pressed with serious intensity too, his technique may need slight fine-tuning, but his willingness to work explains his superb progress this season. Next point of call might be to make more space on his shelf for these incoming man-of-the-matches.
The range of passing on show, from the quick one-two to the cross field diagonal, our ability to bring our teammates into the game, create passing lanes and taking out the multiple opposition players with a single pass, was simply brilliant. Our recognition of space has improved significantly, every player had the intention to always make the forward passes. A superb victory, but not perfect. And it never should be. One part of our performance to improve is our pressing technique, our intensity never lacks, but our efficiency doesn’t match. Too often we fail to cut as many passing lanes as possible.

Bloomsbury U9 Black vs Sport London e Benfica U10

Despite playing players a year older, the team were unfazed and determined to play positively. Always looking to play in the midfield third and always willing to receive from goal kicks. Though we were proactive in our attitude, credit goes to the opposition for their intelligence and quick movement to exploit our defensive mistakes.
They did start slow, but the boys really took the game to the opposition. With grit and aggression, we started to compete in our 1v1 duels, winning many of them as well, but ultimately were unfortunate not to grab a goal for their efforts.
One of the moments that really pleased the coach was a freekick crafted expertly after asking the team: ‘can we do something different here?’ Aarez ran up, but faked over the ball, baiting the opposition allowing Santi to slide the ball into Aarez who then cut the ball across the goal. Gut-wrenching that nobody was able to get themselves to the end of it, but the creativity was exceptional and shows how well the boys are applying their trainings.
Playing a year up, against boys faster and stronger, the team put in maximum effort and put in a great account to compete with a higher level of aggression and intelligence than normal.
It’s vital for the boys now to receive the ball with the correct body shape and foot position, in order to play to their teammate. Too often we’re caught in position, simply due to our players having their back to the opposition, as opposed to being side on with the intention of playing the next pass into the wide areas. It’s an area to improve but one the team more than certainly have the capacity to perfect.

Bloomsbury U10 Gold vs Sport London e Benfica U11

Player unavailability took its toll in a big way in this game, a recurring theme for all coaches and their respective age groups this rainy Saturday at Coram’s Field.
Playing opposition a year older was always going to compound the problem, as they overwhelmed with their physicality. Yet regardless off all the obstacles, the willingness of the Bloomsbury boys cannot be faulted, always trying to play football the right way. However, this fixture was just not meant to be unfortunately. We let the opposition’s physicality get the best of us, we were the better footballing side, but our decision-making was crippled by the fear to engage the larger in stature opposition. Fantastic periods of play were on show, with a full squad this result is almost certainly a different one, a more favourable one for us too.
Special, special mention for Oliver who took his two goals superbly and very much galvanised the team in a very difficult scenario.

Bloomsbury U10 vs FC Marylebone U11

A disappointing result for the U10s against a team they’re most definitely capable to beat.
The weekend’s difficulties did plague the team in this fixture, but there were glimpses of elements in this game not yet seen before in previous matches: attempting shots from long distance, mixing up set-piece situations and dribbling out of difficult situations. A lot to work on, but also a lot of positives to take. A fixture not to dwell on, but onwards and upwards.
The boys were disappointed with the card they were dealt with, but their response with regard to being very vocal that this weekend’s results and performances were not to happen again, were a huge plus. The coach fears for the opposition in upcoming weeks as this bunch of players are wounded animals at the moment and most certainly will bounce back emphatically.
Shoutout to Jon, one player who stood up and made himself counted regardless of where he played on the pitch, his effort levels were second to none, working extremely hard both out of possession to win the ball back for this team, and when in possession in order to create opportunities for both himself and his unfamiliar teammates, as the squad was cut down by three to four, as a result of reinforcements required elsewhere, meaning the opposition gave us two of their players to play with.

Bloomsbury U10 Black vs PFA U10

In the wake of Koeman’s reign at Barca, Bloomsbury’s U10s paid tribute by rolling back the years to Barca’s pomp; playing the final third with true elegance, combining cogently using the fuses and changing the lines to create the angles to play forward. The level of performance, not just from Bloomsbury, earning the praise of the parents watching as it proved to be an exciting game.
Bloomsbury would take the W in the Camden Youth League (CYL), with two of their goalscorers especially influential: Adam Ismail’s pressing from the front and exceptional hold-up play set us up for the counter, and as the game progressed Bert Ismail grew and grew becoming instrumental in building our attack, strictly moving forward with every involvement and dribbling forward with desire.

Bloomsbury U11 Black vs Sport London e Benfica U12s

The Bloomsbury U11s along with Sport London E Benfica put on a rollercoaster of a show in the CYL.
Bloomsbury ended up losing narrowly, but they deserve immense credit for their response to playing a year up with low numbers in their squad, with extra special mention to Oli and Vanya making a double jump. The boys struggled in the opening exchanges to deal with the direct approach of the opposition and the shape of their over-the-top passes, but they were able to find an answer. Morgan became very effective in the sweeper role, as the boys took the half-time advice of making sure they could see the number on the back of the opponent’s shirt, and consequently gave themselves more time to make informed and effective decisions. It was quickly implemented after the restart and raised the confidence levels. Their efforts were unfairly compensated; unable to score despite dominating for a large spell. After being pegged back, Vanya produced something magical by looping his 25 yard free-kick over the wall and into the top left corner. What followed was a flurry of goals in both ends, leaving the score with ten minutes to go, reading as a high, high draw. After a long spell of possession, Benfica finished with a killer pass that broke our back line and earnt them the victory.
We may have lost, but nothing detracts from the number of intelligent moves which ticked a number of our objectives set before the match to play through the thirds and look after the ball. James Tracey offered a constant threat on the left-side of a boxed midfield four, and his partner Ardi capped a great display with his well-taken finish. Oli turned on the style with a classy, chipped goal from distance weightily rivalling Vanya’s attempt for goal of the game, but man-of-the-match however goes to captain Troy Ismaili, who like a true leader communicated excellently and put in a comprehensive performance epitomising the character of his team: desire to win the ball back and bravery to drive and penetrate ingeniously and overload the attack.

Protect Youth U12 vs Bloomsbury U12


The way this game played out personified Block One of the 2021/22 season for the U12s.
They had the opportunity of the last two weeks of half-term to reflect back at the months learning and apply it where they could. Seven players were missing this game, but that was no excuse for the boys, instead an opportunity to prove themselves.
The conditions were difficult, playing on a small nine-a-side pitch with eleven-a-side goals. Credit to the opposition as they were able to adapt to this much better than us. We scored early to lead in the game, but we became complacent in key moments and found ourselves chasing. Winning the first ball is important, but then winning the second becomes even more important to regain possession and look to ask questions of the opposition, this game the boys were second best in both aspects. Not showing their full potential, leaving themselves frustrated which further affected the individual performances. A lot to learn from as the team move into Block Two, as the lads know they’re capable of much, much more.
A difficult game to pick out specific shoutouts, as it was a tough environment for the U11s to come into, so full credit to to Zeid, Troy and Mohamed for doing just that, brilliant to see confident lads step up a year group and fit in.

Bracknell Town U13 vs Bloomsbury U13


Capital City Academy was host to the exciting JPL fixture that saw Bracknell open the scoring after just five minutes, breaking through and finishing inside the area. We equalised just two minutes later when a bouncing ball over the top was expertly controlled and lifted over the goal-keeper by Che.
Bracknell responded well, we came under pressure conceding a number of set pieces, including the corner which would see us fall behind after a goal-mouth scramble.
Halfway through the third quarter, Ebenezer grabbed a well-deserved equaliser with a carbon copy of our first, beating the keeper to the ball and lifting it over him, the ball hitting the back of the net despite the commendable efforts of the Bracknell defender to clear.
The pressure was on Bracknell to hold out until the end, and credit to them they survived the efforts from the Bloomsbury attackers. Bloomsbury had to survive a couple of scares themselves as Bracknell hit the crossbar twice before regaining the lead with just ten minutes remaining. The intensity was ever-increasing when Bracknell scored with a finish high in to the roof of the net, sparking wild celebrations on the touch lines. Despite a number of late chances and the Bloomsbury boys’ best efforts, they just couldn’t find the equaliser that they deserved, and came away frustrated, but importantly, proud of their efforts.
The teamwork and positive attitude on show throughout was so impressive, and with just one substitute, the boys were required to work extremely hard and they worked for each other for the full 80 minutes, showing character and determination to come from behind twice. The team understood and actioned each change to the tactics and formation, a challenge in a week in which we were unable to train due to half-term, it’s why there’s real belief this squad is going to make huge progress over the coming weeks. The decision making in every area of the pitch was fantastic, but we paid the price for conceding an early goal and conceding from set pieces.
Shoutouts to: Sami Wright for a complete performance in-between the sticks, commanding his penalty area, making a number of key stops and distributing superbly, also Francesco Beber who built the attack from the first third, playing many forward passes in to the pivots and displaying outstanding decision making consistently and Ebenezer and Che, our two forwards throughout the game who never ever gave up on any ball forward and thoroughly deserved their goals.

Henley Lions U14 vs Bloomsbury U14


A disappointing loss on what was an extremely tight pitch. Winning the midfield battle was key for the Under 14s, and was immediately evident as to why it was so crucial as the fact we failed to do this in the opening exchanges of the game ultimately cost us, trailing 2-0 after eight minutes, putting ourselves in an unfortunate position.
Though we didn’t start strong, we weren’t in the mood to give up easily, with Callum Rahman battling furiously in the right hand side, dealing with the oppositions quick left winger effectively. In possession we looked to expose space beyond the back line, whether that be one long ball over or short range split passes to our wingers, with Johnny Lynskey playing a false 9 role to aid this perfectly. On a number of occasions he successfully dropped into the midfield pocket attracting the central defender, leaving a hole for us to expose.
In this game we saw glimpses how successful our work during the ‘free week’ in training on rotations from dead ball situations could be, which was a massive positive. It displayed that the concept had been understood, and that with more fine tuning, it will become a very effective weapon for their arsenal.
They worked as hard as they could to try and recover but unfortunately it didn’t work out.

Bracknell Town FC U15 vs Bloomsbury U15


A loss to forget. Credit to the opposition for their organisation on and off the ball and to their ability in possession. We must work harder.
Despite huge loss we had, Dylan was one of the only ones who kept going and tried to perform during the whole game.
A really frustrating loss for everyone, but we’ll do everything to bounce back next week. We have a good team and need to show it on the pitch. The whole team, players and coaches, have total trust of each other that we’ll try our hardest as a collective to change this around.