Book your place with:

Get in touch

t: 0131 220 5999

Aston Villa Game 2 2012

Two teams of proud Aston Villa fans arrived at Villa Park for the 2nd Football Aid game of 2012, raring to go and eager to impress their loyal band of supporters. With the weather bright and the pitch looking in excellent nick as usual, the playing conditions couldn't be better, and we were all set for another hugely entertaining game.

Saturday 12th May 2012
Aston Villa Home vs Aston Villa Away
Kick Off: 15:00pm
Game: 2
Match Officials: David Beament, Mark Taylor, Ken Horrigan and Jason Keeley

The Away team kicked off, attacking towards the Holte End and it wasn’t long before the crowd were on their feet, admiring a fast attacking move from the team in White. Right-back Ben Roberts, collected the ball from deep, taking it forward a good 40 yards and feeding it to Danny Dowd, who sent a lovely through ball into space for John Dowd to attack. The No 7 did well to evade the first challenge and looked set to cross it towards the strikers, but some excellent defending by Lee Woods, who cleared the cross with a diving header, relieved the pressure and gave away a corner. The resulting corner produced the first attempt on target, Shaun Horobin getting above everyone else to guide his header towards goal, but the keeper did well to read the trajectory of the ball and safely clutched it to his chest.

Both defences appeared to be on top in the initial 10 mins, until Mike Moran put his Away side 1-0 up with a glorious chip, which he perfectly arced over the keeper and into the gaping net. The goal came from a wonderfully timed long ball from Ben Roberts, which caught the defence on the back foot. It was a great goal to break the deadlock. (0-1)

The game then witnessed a moment of ingenious skill, and so nearly a candidate for goal of the season had it not been for the quick reflexes of the keeper. The cross came in and was headed back across goal by Brendan Maxwell, just behind Richard Yarnold who showed great technique by twisting his body in mid air and producing a splendid over-head kick which so nearly found the back of the net, but his excellent effort was thwarted by Captain Dean Smith's fingertips, the keeper sending the ball just over the bar. The pressure was un-relenting, and the resulting corner probably should have brought a goal. Ben Roberts did brilliantly to leap above his marker to meet the cross but he just wasn’t able to get the header on target.

A moment of calamity would transpire next, allowing the Away team to increase the lead in the 14th min. The cross was sent towards the front post by the industrious Brendan Maxwell towards the Home defender Adam Garrad (OG), who looked set to head the ball clear to safety. However the ball was whipped in with such ferocity the No 6 was unable to get his angles right and was unfortunate to steer the ball into his own net. (0-2)

The Home keeper was forced into action shortly after in the 34th min after the Away team's attacking right-back was put through on goal by a wonderful through ball by Shaun Horobin, after he had dispossessed his opponent. Ben Roberts did well to stay on his feet despite being tugged, and was able to get his shot away - which was well saved by keeper - but the referee had already blown his whistle for the initial foul. The resulting free-kick from Horobin found the head of the towering Mike Moran but the ball sailed just over.

With the first half coming to a close it was the Away team who looked the most likely to score. This time Ben Roberts came forward, running all the way from the back to receive the well timed ball from Mike Moran down the flank. The No 2 was able to take the ball into the box - the defender pulling out of the challenge so as not to concede a penalty - and sending a cross across goal. The keeper was able to stick a foot out and clear but only as far as Brendan Maxwell, who hit the ball first time but lost his footing, forcing the ball wide.

Just as it seemed the Away team were about to go into the break with a comfortable lead, a penalty was awarded to the Home side. Nick Thompson sent the cross into the box, which Adam Garrad met on the move, before he was deemed to have been tripped by the defender. The referee was in the ideal position to see the foul, and there appeared to be little complaint from the Away side. Up stepped Ashley Morris for penalty duties and with a small run up he casually side-footed the ball into the bottom right corner, the pressure evidently not affecting him. The exuberant celebration from the No 16 produced some lovely disco moves, which had the crowd in stitches. (1-2)  

That penalty reduced the deficit to one goal and brought an end to an entertaining first half of football from both teams.

Half-Time: Aston Villa Home 1 - 2 Aston Villa Away

However, despite the Home team's fight-back at the end of the 1st half, it only took 2 mins for the Away team to go two goals up. Midfield magician Danny Dowd sent the ball down the flank for Stephen Moran who crossed the ball first time towards the back post. Mike Moran did well to peel away from his marker and thunder a header into the near post. The keeper was able to get a hand to the header, but it was too powerful to prevent it going in. (1-3)

The Away team then had a glorious chance to possibly put the game to bed with a 3 goal lead. Stephen Moran sent a straightforward long ball forward which evaded the whole of the defence and reached Richard Yarnold, who was left with just the keeper to beat. The No 9 tried to side foot the shot under the keeper’s legs, but fair play to Dean Smith in the Home goal, as he was quick to tighten the angle and got the deftest of touches, sending the ball wide.

The resulting corner kept the pressure on the Home side and it produced a goal, only for it to be then disallowed. Mike Moran sent the cross in, which reached Terry Rickeard at the far side, who then sent the ball back across goal which was met by Richard Yarnold. However the player was deemed to have been in an offside position and the goal was ruled out.

The Home team worked hard to salvage a goal back with, with some impressive runs by Mark Roberts and Paul Cridland being some of the highlights. However, they just couldn’t threaten the goal and the Away team's defence stood strong, proving to be impenetrable: in particular, Mark Roberts and Ashley Morris, who both continued to be rock solid at the back.

However, in the 75th min, the Home team finally managed to create a goal scoring opportunity. Ashley Morris latched on to a mistake at the back: a loose header back to the keeper. The No 16 was then able to round the keeper, but the ball had gone too far wide to make the shot as easy as he would have liked. Instead he found Paul Cridland, who had sprinted into the box ahead of his marker, but his shot was saved by the legs of the keeper, who had recovered just in time to get back. The danger was not clear as the rebound looked to have fallen kindly to Nick Thompson for the tap in. However, a fantastic block from the stretched leg of Shaun Horobin halted his effort, before Steve Brown cleared the ball to safety. The hands on the heads from the Home team typified how much they knew that this was a great chance wasted.

Only a few minutes later Danny Dowd, for the Away team looked to finish the game off individually, with a powerful run through the opposition towards the Home goal. Like a runaway steam train there looked to be no way to halt him and a desperate lunge from Lee Woods, taking away Danny Dowd’s legs, seemed the only way. With sections of the crowd chanting for red, the referee knew he had a tough call to make. Realising the good nature of the game, the referee decided to keep his cards in his pocket and instead just give the free-kick from a very good position just outside the box.

Brendan Maxwell was given the free-kick responsibility and it was clear that going for goal was his only option. With a short back lift he curled the ball into the top left corner leaving the keeper helplessly rooted to his spot. It was a classy goal, one which David Beckham would have been proud off, and it made the score line read 4-1 to the Away team. (1-4)

The Away team looked more comfortable now, and they started to play some good football on the excellent playing surface and it wasn’t long after before they had another chance to increase their tally. Brendan Maxwell came very close to adding another goal for himself following a free-kick from Ben Roberts. The clearance from the defence fell kindly to him, but he did well to get a volley in on the edge of the box, which was sent over the bar by the legs of Adam Garrad, who charged the shot down.

As the game was drawing to an end Ben Roberts displayed great skill, pace and endurance, going on a mazy run, leaving defenders in his wake and cutting the ball across the defender, before unleashing a left foot shot that was well held by the keeper. The run drew great applause by the fans, appreciating the effort.

The score-line remained the same, although the Away team looked more likely to add another goal, and they very nearly did in the 86th minute. Steve Brown somehow managed to get in a cross, despite being grounded, which Mike Moran got on the end off, seeing his poked shot saved by the keeper and out for a corner. However the keeper's touch wasn't spotted by the referee who gave the goal-kick instead, much to everyone’s bemusement.

The pressure eventually paid off and the Away side claimed their 5th goal of the game. Again the goal came from a set-piece, Shaun Horobin sent in a chipped ball into the box which was met by Richard Yarnold with great technique, guiding the volley with the side of his foot into the left corner of the net. (1-5)

The referee blew the full-time whistle shortly after, ending a game rich in goals and skill. The game had been very close in the first half, but the 2nd half belonged to the Away team, who rounded off a great performance with some fantastic goals.  

Full-Time: Aston Villa Home 1 - 5 Aston Villa Away

Man of the Match Home: Dave Travers
Man of the Match Away: Shaun Horobin
Moment of the Match: Ashley Morris

Home Team: Dean Smith (C), Mark Roberts, Lee Woods, Dave Travers, Adam Garrad, Nigel Ashford, Mark Roberts, Paul Cridland, Robert Thorpe, Nick Thompson, Adam Garrad, Craig Davies, Ashley Morris, Dave Travers
Mascot: Rhiannon Travers

Away Team: Sam Godsall, Ben Roberts, Darren Felsenstein (C), Shaun Horobin, Gary Ravenhill, John Dowd, Brendan Maxwell, Richard Yarnold, Danny Dowd, Mike Moran, Jake Welch, Terry Rickeard, Steve Brown, Stephen Moran
Mascot: Owen Rochelle