Charlton Invicta 2-7 Lions
Nottingham’s impressive start to their league campaign went right off the richter scale in South East London with a simply sensational performance.
Amazingly, the contest was over by half-time with Lions out of sight and five ahead.
Charlton just had no answer whatsoever to the visitors offensive threat. A lively first ten saw Owen shoot just wide whilst a breakaway at the other end saw Liam rush out to narrow the angle meaning a dangerous situation came to nothing.
Like the previous two league games, Lions then exploded, but this time it was four goals in twelve minutes.
Owen pressurised the home keeper into an error with the ball at his feet, won possession and thumped home. Within a minute, Sean M played Owen in who squared to James H, the experienced winger lined himself up and the trusted left foot did the rest.
Liam’s long punt from a back pass went miles and Owen controlled with sublime ease, flicked a pass to James H who fired home with venom.
Invicta were desperate for some respite but it wasn’t forthcoming, James H’s shot was tipped over well by a punch-drunk keeper.
On 23 minutes a ball bobbling around the six yard box from a corner saw Owen hammer home. The scoreline seemed to be a complete fantasy, one had to pinch oneself to realise the truth.
Charlton couldn’t muster anything, they were completely shell-shocked by Nottingham’s vigour and enthusiasm for the contest.
Lions attack was frightening and their centre midfield three gelled from the outset, as solid as an M25 protester glued to the tarmac!
With a strong defence and a hard working front line Lions were resolute out of possession and wanting more.
Jake’s chipped free kick on 30 minutes found Sean M in space who fired just over but a fifth goal wasn’t long in coming.
A precise through ball saw Asher run from the half way line, beat his marker for pace, round the keeper and tap in for a classy finish.
If he thought his work was done however he received a rude awakening minutes later from the skipper, “you can’t just jog around” Treaders bellowed. A true captain is never happy.
A daft handball could have caused problems right on half time but the crossbar came to Lions aid from the resulting free kick. Could you ask for a more complete half of football? I think not.
HT: Charlton Invicta 0-5 Nottingham Lions
As expected, the second-half, was a bit drab in comparison as Nottingham had a poor first fifteen without actually looking too threatened.
However, the game became feisty now and took a cynical twist. With the re-introduction of Owen, Charlton decided that the only way to stop him was to kick him off the park.
He was hacked down on 59 minutes and after lengthy treatment thankfully was OK to secure his hat-trick from the penalty spot.
More abhorrent tackles flew in so with the points safe, subbing Owen seemed the best option.
This game thankfully calmed down somewhat although the final ten minutes proved eventful.
Treaders had a goal-bound volley well saved before Charlton scored from a corner.
They scored a second from a free kick although Liam was clearly fouled in a crowded penatly box. In-between those two goals Nottingham hit their seventh and it was worthy of “goal of the season”.
James H hit a through ball down the channel, Iain G flicked it first time into space where the onrushing Sean M curled a left foot shot right into the far corner, exquisite!
FT: Charlton Invicta 2-7 Nottingham Lions
What an incredible afternoon, after feeling so forlorn after the semi-final defeat in July this victory was totally satisfying.
Football is a team sport so when everyone gives off their best, what more can anyone ask? Simply sensational Lions!
Lions – Liam, Robbie, Simon, Brett, Iain, Andy T, Andy P, Jake, Sean M, James H and Owen.
Subs – Mathew, Asher, Mario, Shaun, Adam W and Ian.
Scorers – Owen 3, James H 2, Asher and Sean M.