A sunny afternoon at Garrick Memorial Park saw Cashmere Technical host Coastal Spirit. A win for Cashmere Technical would see them be crowned the Southern Football League champions. Cashmere Technical persevered and did enough to win 2-0 to cement their place as the champions.
Cashmere Technical lined up in a fluid 4231/433 shape and based their attacks down the flanks. Knight was in goal with the Schwarz brothers pairing in the heart of defence. Haworth was right fullback, whilst Boys was left. Mitchell, Ogilvie and Tongue made up the central 3. Mitchell and Ogilvie rotated to whom would hold whilst the other supported. Tongue was a little more advanced and would make runs beyond Clapham. Clapham, who started as the centre forward played much like a false 9, dropping deep to create space for Tongue and the wingers to exploit. Matthysen and King often switched wings but whoever was on the left would attack the byline whilst the one on the right would make runs in behind the space Clapham had created.
Coastal Spirit were in a 352/532 formation, which we saw used successfully by England at the FIFA World Cup 2018. Thomas in goal with 3 central defenders going from right to left; Gerathy, McGarr and Liddicoat. Richards played right wing back and was slightly more attacking minded to that of Bush who played left wing back. Jones was the deep lying midfielder with Nicol and Williams operating in front of him. Zeb and Welbourn were in tandem up front, with the latter dropping off to link up play whilst the former made runs in behind.
Coastals’ Low Block + Pressing Triggers
Coastal were happy to sit back in their own half in a low block. The wing backs sat back to make a back 5 to nullify Cashmere Technical’s attacking threats. They looked to let Cashmere play to their right side and used carful pressing triggers once they had Dan Schwarz onto his right foot. This happened occasionally and apart from the odd counter attack, this was the only time Coastal opted to get numbers forward. Otherwise they were structured with their low block and didn’t give Cashmere any clear-cut chances in the first half and would have been happy entering half time at 0-0.
Playing out from the Back
Both sides looked to build play out from the back, but with contrasting success. Cashmere Technical were very efficient, enjoying majority of the possession on the day. Either of the Schwarz brothers would look for the fullbacks to play out from to then attack down the flank. The play would then be switched hoping to isolate a Coastal Spirit wingback once Coastal’s midfield had shifted across. Coastal Spirit also tried playing out from the back but were often caught over passing or dwelling on the ball. This lead to some silly mistakes and aloud Cashmere Technical to press and pin Coastal Spirit in their own half even when they had possession.
Cashmere’s Wide Play
Cashmere Technical tended to attack down the flanks. They often looked to exploit Coastal Spirit’s wingbacks by building up play on one side to then switch with pace to the opposite flank. They found great success creating overloads against Richards who was often caught quite high up the pitch. Boys, Ogilvie and either of Matthysen or King bypassed with ease in this 3 vs 1 situation. On the opposite flank King/Matthysen was allowed to cut in with Bush reluctant to track inside which would cluster the central defence. So, Cashmere’s right winger was able either to live on the ball outside the penalty box or move into the space created by the dropped off Clapham. Haworth would support the right flank from behind but it was Clapham who would come across to play one twos with the winger.
Welbourn vs the Schwarz brothers
It looked to be an entertaining encounter between one of the league’s leading strikers up against the league’s most formidable defence – that has only conceded 5 goals. Welbourn was the focal point of anything dangerous Coastal Spirit created. He did well dropping off and linking up play with the midfield runners with bounce passes. He had a great chance to give Coastal Spirit the lead with a clever flick from a cross after he evaded his markers. Overall, the Schwarz brother dealt with Welbourn well and managed to shut out Welbourn for the 90 minutes.
Coastal Spirit came out in the 2nd half with a lot more purpose and attacked Cashmere Technical for majority of the commencing 15 minutes. However, it was Matthysen who slid in behind Coastal Spirit’s defence as Clapham dropped off that forced a corner. Matthysen had his corner delivery cleared back out to him for he to then curl it into the far corner to make it 1-0. About 5 minutes later Cashmere grab their second which also resulted from a corner. Coastal failed to clear and the ball got chipped into the 6-yard box for Dan Schwarz to slot home – albeit some strong appeals for being offside. Coastal left it late to make any tactical changes, changing to a 433 with only 10 minutes to go. Substitute Butler provided a spark off the bench as he took up the left wing role in the 433. But the final scored remained 2-0 to cashmere Technical, Southern Football League champions.