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2024 Match Reports

Winklebury Tournament Wednesday 17th January 2024

Squad: Ian Dowson, John Hall, Heather Kirkland, Jeff Lough, Rick Parker, Barry Poffley (capt), Kevin Reed, Richard Walker (goalie).
Thanks to Richard for stepping in at short notice and being goalie on a bitterly cold morning.
Gosport didn't make it so there were 5 teams -  the 4 matches were 20 minutes long with a short half-time break. All members of our squad played in each match with two substitutions made at half-time. 
Vs Tadley 3-0
Good moves led to several chances for Winchester in the first half. The deadlock was broken with a sweeping move, which ended with Rick laying the ball off to Ian who struck a fine shot into the bottom left-hand corner. Winchester kept up the pressure in the second-half with Barry scoring twice - the first from a rebound after a save from the Tadley keeper and the second resulting from a defensive mistake. 
Vs Pompey 0-4
This was always going to be a tough game with Pompey on a fine trophy-winning run. Richard made a great save from a clear Pompy opportunity, but could do little with the thunderbolt of a shot that opened the scoring from the right-hand side into the far corner. More good saves from Richard kept Winchester in the game, but Pompey's quality told in the end with 3 further goals.

Vs Farnham Town Flares 0-4 and Vs Cove 0-3
These two games were similar with Farnham and Cove passing the ball around well. Richard was a bit unfortunate with a couple of the goals.
Overall it was an enjoyable morning with some good football played. The facility is excellent and it's a shame more teams don't enter.

Stoneham Tournament Wednesday 10 January 2024
Winchester Walking Footballers made it a winning start to 2024 with their first ever victory at the Hampshire FA monthly tournament at Stoneham
Squad: Phil Courtney, Ian Dowson, David Kirkby (capt), Martin Kukla (goalie), Steve Nash, Barry Poffley, Kevin Reed, Eugene Wills.
There were 3 leagues again this month. Weinchesterwere in Ligue 1 with 4 other teams. Each match was 16 minutes with a short half-time break.
The other teams in the league were New Milton, Salisbury, Havant Hawks Originals, and Farnham Town Flares. Winchester had previously beaten Farnham Town Flares' over-60s side at the HFA Winklebury Tournament in November, but here we faced their over-50s side. Also, Salisbury had defeated us 4-0 at Stoneham in October, so this was a very competitive league.
Vs New Milton 3-0
It was another slow start from Winchester with early passes going astray. 0-0 at half time.  The team found their rhythm in the second half and began to dominate the ball. Steve opened the scoring from Barry's quickly taken short free-kick.  A few minutes later Steve laid off a pass to Phil on the right who smashed home the second, and Ian added a well struck third (assist by Barry) to round off what turned out to be a convincing win. 
Vs Salisbury 1-0
Winchester went into this game knowing that they had to get something out of it to stand a chance of winning their league. It was a tightly contested affair with Steve breaking the deadlock early in the second half, drilling a right-footed shot into the bottom right-hand corner. Ian replaced Steve shortly afterwards with the task of keeping Salisbury’s midfield playmaker quiet for the rest of the game.

Vs Havant Hawks Originals 1-0
In a tight first half Kevin hit a long range shot into the top left corner of the goal - but this was ruled out as the ref adjudged it to have gone above bar height. Early in the second half a sweeping move across the pitch led to another long-range shot by Kevin, this time saved by the keeper, but with the rebound neatly tucked in by Phil. Winchester continued to create chances but could not add a second.
Vs Farnham Town Flares 1-0
This was Winchester’s final game and having won their previous three they knew that a win would secure top spot and the trophy. After a long range shot was parried by the Farnham ‘keeper, Barry half-volleyed the rebound in from a tight angle. Winchester then played some excellent possession football to limit Farnham chances. With the game at 1-0 and the clock running down, Farnham created one final chance - a low fierce shot looked certain to hit the back of the net but Martin would not be beaten making a sharp Banks-like save low down to his right.  
The League Title and Trophy was Winchester’s !
This was a terrific Winchester performance with every member of the 8 man squad contributing significantly. Great defending and midfield play limited the oppositions' chances to shots from distance, and those that were on target were dealt with by Martin who was on top form.  
4 games, 4 wins and 4 clean sheets. 
Campione, Campione,  olé olé olé !
Special thanks to Sue for dealing with and issuing the kit, Fiona for the support and biscuits on the day, and David for his organisation.

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