Having had a challenging start to the season Currie Star turned in a resolute performance against North Merchiston. A disciplined first half had them a strong lead but a good response from North Merchiston pegged them back. However, two late goals gave Currie Star a well-deserved victory in testing weather conditions.
Currie Star 2003 Head Coach Ian Dracup was keen to see a complete performance with the use of width in attack but also showing attention to their defensive duties. Playing into the wind in the first half a solid 3-3 formation gave them a platform to be able to push forward when needed but with the extra man back to avoid being caught out by the wind. This worked well and where there was defending to be done, it was done with commitment. The back 3 and the ‘keeper worked as a unit with the defenders covering for each other and making sure they got a tackle in, while the ‘keeper got down quickly to make saves when required.
Going forward there was good game awareness, knowing when to take a touch and when to move the ball quickly. This resulted in one of the Currie Star goals where the ball was moved quickly from the ‘keeper and passed into midfield, three touches to beat the opposition player and a well weighted pass though for the finish into the bottom corner. A quick and incisive goal created from the ball-to-feet distribution from the ‘keeper and the driving energy through midfield. Goal of the match.
Currie Star coach Dracup praised the players for keeping going in the second half when North Merchiston came back: “It was an excellent game, it had a bit of everything; goals, a penalty, a bit of drama! It was a really good first half where we played a 3-3 formation and it was really disciplined. Although the concentration went a bit in the second half we did well to regain the focus and see out the game.”
A change of formation for Currie at half time took a while to settle but like everything at this stage of development it is about experience and allowing players to play in several positions.
Dracup added: “We went with the lone striker in the second half when we had the wind at our backs to see if we could take advantage of that. It took a bit of time to get used to that and our shape suffered a bit but as the half went on it became easier. We like to try and swap players around so that they can get an idea of the different roles so that they gain the experience. A defender who has also played as a striker can look at a situation through a striker’s mind-set and will hopefully be able to read what the striker might do even if it means risking losing games to give player the opportunity to develop.”
Playing 7-a-side at the moment, giving the players an opportunity to experience different positions is key to helping them make the step to 11-a-side next year. Things can be a bit more rigid with eleven players on the pitch so taking the chance to move players into different positions now allows them to develop different aspects of their game.