Thame lose in County Cup
Thame lose their way in Banbury
Thame gave themselves the opportunity to “concentrate on the league” as they departed the OFA Cup for another season. After the tumultuous events of the previous two fixtures this game was played off at a much lower temperature (the unseasonable sunshine notwithstanding) and in some ways Thame rather gave this one away.
Virtually nothing happened of note in the first quarter except for Banbury going 2-0 up: it was that sort of game. A defensive mix up on 10’ between keeper and defender let the Banbury striker in and then a free-kick from another Thame defensive mistake squeezed in the top corner when it appeared to be covered.
Belatedly Thame began to get into the game with a drive over the bar from Alfie and then Jonny shot after a neat passage of play between Alfie and Scott led to a Felix (playing up front as target man) pull-back. A really excellent move followed from a Scott corner: when the ball was played away Alfie brought it under control and played it back to Scott whose short ball into the box led to Lloyd pulling wide and flashing a shot across the goal and just wide of the left-hand post.
However-Thame’s efforts to get back into the game were then undermined as we conceded a soft penalty which might have been avoided if we had stayed on our feet. 0-3 at half-time.
Although Banbury had a substantial lead this did not represent the relative strength of the teams and after a slightly dodgy start when Matty had to get his tackle right when we were stretched the boys settled into some flowing forward football. An incisive through ball from Jake was layed back by Scott to Alfie who drove towards the area and shot; Billy nipped into the melee in the box but the ball struck the post; Josh got on the end of Scott corner and went close with a header and Jonny twice drew saves with shots from the inside left channel.
Thame played the football without quite creating the clear-cut chance who could have got them into the game. Banbury did not have any chances of their own and there was little pressure on the Thame goal, a spectacular Felix volley across his own penalty area notwithstanding.
In the end it was “one of those days”. Man of the match Lloyd whose calm anticipation and incisive tackling shored up a back line that was a bit shaky in the first quarter, and who went as close as anyone to getting a Thame goal.