Struggling Raiders stun league leaders FC Team
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Struggling Raiders stun league leaders FC Team

NORSTARCNorstar London Raiders C ended FC Team C’s unbeaten start to the season with a thoroughly deserved victory in Borehamwood.

MGBSFL Division Two:
FC Team C 3 Norstar London Raiders C 5
Sunday, 7 December, 2014

Norstar knew that they needed to put in a complete performance if they were to beat the league leaders and they rewarded themselves and their managers with all three points.

Norstar set up with a slightly new formation in an attempt to give them more of a boost in the middle and to win the game from central midfield. Norstar have struggled when conceding goals in recent matches, but whereas heads had previously dropped, after going 1-0 down within five minutes, Norstar battled and equalised within five minutes when a Will Ufland shot from the edge of the box deflected into the back of the net.

The action continued shortly afterwards when FC Team’s excellent attackers were running rings around Norstar’s defensive unit. Team got back into the lead, but Norstar equalised once again within five minutes with a stunning goal. Marc Woolfe, having picking the ball up on the right touchline by the halfway line, pinged a wonderful left-footed diagonal ball to the left edge of the penalty box where Liam Stein having run in from left back, took a touch to get beyond the remaining Team defender and drilled the ball across the keeper, a stunning goal and a fantastic assist.

The neutrals were not to be disappointed soon after when Team retook the lead for a third time, an outrageous goal from the Team striker who juggled the ball three times in the box before volleying past the helpless Grant Waissel. Norstar picked themselves up once again and shortly after equalised for a third time in the first half, with Nick Haringman running onto a through ball on the left side of the box, cutting back in past two defenders, rounding the goalkeeper and slotting the ball home. It remained 3-3 at the break and Norstar had shown the fight and battle that they had lacked in recent weeks.

Having shaken Team C, Norstar knew that if they took the lead rather than having to play catch up, they would turn the game and bring home the three points. Having worked as a team to nullify Team C’s two best players, Norstar started to dominate the game. With 25 minutes to go, a delightful flowing Norstar move saw Alex Goodman released one-on-one on the right hand side of the box, and the captain for the day wasn’t going to lose the opportunity to give Norstar a well earned lead. Four became five within 10 minutes when the impressive Oli Nathan was released down the right hand side and cooly slotted the ball into the back of the net.

Norstar had to face a barrage of attacks from FC Team as the clock neared 90 and held firm with some excellent defensive work. They were unlucky not to extend their lead. An enormous win which will surely send a message to the rest of the league that Norstar will not be propping up the division come the end of the season. And roll on Neasden in the Morrison next week.

Manager Zack Gothelf said: “We showed the heart, fight, drive and class that we know we can all possess. The best thing about today was that we played, battled and won as a team today, a real joint effort. We can hope this will propel us into having a good run-in to the winter break.”

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