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U18s: Paulton 3 – 2 Frome

Team: Locke, Wells, Barnaby, Wheeler, Rose, Cagilaba, Lunt, Brewster, Seviour©, Hardwick, Porter.

Subs: Charlie, Rudi, Russell, Carver, Wright.

Dugout: Fosu Gharban(M)

MOM: Rudi

Frome Town U18 played a game of two halves here being thoroughly outplayed in the first half by a technically proficient Paulton side who switched the ball across the back looking for overloads to attack down the weak side superbly.

Frome’s pressing during this period showed signs of improvement in terms of the shape of the attack but the midfields use of interior corridors as the starting place for pressing still needed work something which then allowed Paulton to expose Fromes natural weakness in wide midfield areas of their 4123.

Frome made changes from the last game in the FA youth cup against Bath with fullback Wells making his debut while skipper Seviour was back from injury in attack. As has been mention Paulton looked the far stronger side during the first half partly for reasons already discussed. However Frome’s real failing came when in possession of the ball themselves.

Frome’s movement to play out of the back while improved from the opening game of the season still was not fully integrated and understood all through the team with little patches of quality movement from Brewster, Seviour and Cagilaba not fully being matched by the overloading from other sectors of the team in particular forward areas dropping in to overload.

This issue seems to be recurrent and so the training methodolgies will require review with in fairness the players generally being receptive to the many new ideas they have been ask to take on board this season so far. Frome had some good play in the first half predominantly through Seviours good movements and some good running in behind from attackers Porter & Hardwick.

However Frome had no real mechanical control of the game with overloads not consistent and the pressing patterns in forward & midfield areas still being bedded in and Frome found themselves 2-0 down at the break after a controlled performance by an impressive Paulton. Frome had to make a change at 2-0 down with Lunt going off for Charlie in the first half. Charlie playing in central midfield for the first time at this level gave a good account of himself up until half time..

While central defenders Barnaby & Wheeler continued their good form at the back. The second half saw Frome concentrate more on the overload by their strikers to aid the counter press if the ball was lost. This improved movement and overloading saw Frome start to look far more dangerous but after missing some good chances through Seviour, Porter & Hardwick Frome were caught cold for 3-0. At this point playmaker Rudi was introduced and his superb movement & linking play aided with his improved vision and ability to execute longer diagonal passes to punish the opposition when they tried to play higher up the park to press made all the difference.

Wells was now at left back with Charlie right back with Rudi playmaking in midfield behind Seviour Hardwick & the third sub Russell.

Frome now went at Paulton and created several chances. First Brewster smashed home a wonderful 30y ard strike low into the bottom corner after a clearance fell to him and then Seviour blasted home another howitzer after good buildup down the left side by Wells & Hardwick. Wells then went close to equalizing but couldn’t quite convert. The game finished 3-2 to Paulton.

In conclusion Frome need to work with their midfield on coordinated pressing with regards the usage of half spaces. Frome also need to learn to not rush and change to a game plan of longer goal kicks with a high block just because they are behind as this is actually counter productive if you don’t win these longer pass, aerial challenge, high block situations which in general Frome failed to do when chasing the game barring one occasion when Seviour won a flicked header and almost put a player through on goal.

Frome would have been better off constructing play for the last 10 or so and would have created a better quality of chance via the controlled service in forward areas it would have provided.

Frome also now have to look very carefully at the mental aspects of playing through the thirds as it seems some players who understand the playing methods are currently not being trusted to start matches with at times disastrous consequences.

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