Hype Train Football Club competed in our second competitive cup match as we took on Thames Valley Premier League Division 2 outfit, Twyford & Ruscombe, in the Last 16 of the Reading Challenge Cup (in its Junior Cup competition). Read our match report as the Blue and Gold lost their first competitive match in a well-fought game against a good home side. All Aboard.
Match Report: Twyford & Ruscombe FC vs. Hype Train FC
With winter here, we kicked off at 1:30pm in the afternoon at Charvil Community Tennis Club in what was our first match in five weeks and only second game in nine weeks. This showed early on as we conceded the opening goal of the cup encounter inside the first ten minutes of the game, with Twyford's left-winger collecting the ball in the middle of the pitch and striking from distance to beat Jack Roche at the far-post.
As the half grew, we played our best football of the game and were unlucky not to be level, with Leon Mannion going through one-on-one several times, with Twyford's keeper making one outstanding save to keep the score level. Mannion then played through Clayton Holloway on a counter-attack, with Holloway's fierce strike saved by the keeper at his near-post.
The end of the half turned in to a scrapped encounter, with the ball growing harder to control, though Twyford ended the half stronger after controlling possession. The half-time whistle came and in truth, despite not playing well for periods, we had the opportunities to go level, just didn't take them.
The second-half started with another opportunity for Mannion, who beat the offside trap to go through on goal, though his effort soared over. Minutes later, the referee awarded a soft penalty to Twyford after stating he heard contact between Robert Austin and Callum Parr Jones on their Number 8, though the only contact was between the player and the ground.
Regardless, Twyford doubled the lead and took control of the game. Changing shape to allow for more goal-scoring opportunities, a third shortly followed as Twyford found gaps on the counter, before Number 8 completed his hat-trick with a well-worked move down their left-flank, with a second wonder goal resulting in a pin-point shot that was inch-perfect past Roche.
Austin and Holloway then tried with long-range efforts and we saw a lot of the ball in the closing moments of the game, though the game had runaway like a locomotive at this stage of the match. The result now means that we exit the Reading Challenge Cup and turn our focus to the Maidenhead Norfolkian Cup next Saturday at home against Burnham Village.
HTFC Man of the Match:
In back-to-back matches, our Goalkeeper Jack Roche has made some incredible saves that have earnt the shot-stopper our MOTM award. Roche dominated in his own penalty area from set-pieces and tried to get his teammates heads up once we went a few goals behind in the second-half.
Thoughts from General Secretary, Robert Austin:
"This was only our second match in nine weeks.after a lot of cancellations due to weather and flaky opposition and the rust showed as the game against a good Twyford side grew, particularly in the second-half as we chased goals to level the tie.
We started slowly, conceded a wonder goal from distance, but then grew in to the first-half. We didn't play very well, though this was a game of moments. We didn't take any of our chances with any real conviction and it ultimately cost us. It's what happens and we have to learn from this.
All credit to Twyford though, they picked their moments and punished us, even if their penalty at 1-0 in the second-half was highly debatable and the definition of lost, they were well worth their win and their Goalkeeper was in great form to deny us entirely. We wish them luck in the rest of the competition!
As a squad we have learnt a lot from this defeat and we'll work on improving and refining our game, and though we're disappointed to go out in a cup competition, it was honestly just good to get back out on to grass and get the boys playing together as we gear up for an important period of the season prior to the Christmas break in the league. We'll go again next week!"
Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad
Date: Saturday 30th November 2019
Opposition: Twyford & Ruscombe FC
GK: Jack Roche
DEF: Rod Stevens
DEF: Alex O'Keeffe - (C)
DEF: Robert Austin
DEF: James Carter
MID: Noah Hodge
MID: Clayton Holloway
MID: Tommy Payne (King '55)
MID: Callum Fox-Spence (Arnup '60, Browne 83')
MID: Sam Paddon (Parr-Jones '45)
FOR: Leon Mannion
SUB: Sam Arnup
SUB: Martin King
SUB: Callum Parr-Jones
SUB: Warren Browne
Want to know more about The Hype Train?
The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in Fantasy sports reporting, starting with Fantasy Premier League (FPL), before expanding to MLS Fantasy coverage in 2018.
We pride ourselves in providing beautiful graphics, statistics, in-depth analytical reporting and free weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb rankings tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review games, live sport, and professional wrestling.
In 2019, Hype Train Football Club was formed, becoming the first Fantasy Football website to take to the field. HTFC is a socially active team across social and web channels, providing regular match highlights, match reports, comprehensive player statistics and unique player profiles.
The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog' in 2016 by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), and were again shortlisted as a finalist in 2019 in the 'Best Fantasy Football Blog' category.