Stonnall Phoenix 2:9 Leixlip Utd
Stonnall Phoenix played host to a touring team from Ireland and it proved to be a lesson for the home side in higher level football but they came away having earnt respect from the visitors.
Leixlip (pronounced Leekslip) hail from a town west of Dublin where the original Guinness Brewery was sited and their team served up a heady brew (sorry!) of possession, control, discipline and organisation which can only be admired. With virtual encampment in Phoenix’s half, the Irish side scored five times in a dominant first half.
The second half was more competitive and after four minutes Benno bustled through and looped a shot just over the bar. This sparked the Phoenix lads, giving them confidence and in the 41st minute Charlie burst through and scored a deserved goal, his thirteenth of the season. Leixlip scored twice more before Jack made a surging run from the right and crashed a superb shot against the underside of the bar. His disappointment, however, turned to joy when after 56mins he met a Charlie pass brilliantly on the volley from the edge of the area for a goal of the season candidate.
The visitors got two more towards the end of the game and Charlie whizzed a free kick over the bar from distance but the game finished 2:9.
The score, whilst realistic, belies the fact that the lads played well against a superior team. The defence were strong and concentrated throughout with Alfie being singled out for commendation by the visiting coaches. His handling and distribution were sound and he must have made a dozen saves. The midfield battled hard to provide the forwards with chances and helped out defencively.
The Leixlip lads were respectful throughout the game and played with a verve and energy that was enjoyable to watch and was appreciated by the home supporters.
After the game, everyone reconvened at The Old Swan for drinks and sandwiches. Opinions and stories were swapped whilst the teams ate and then played football together in the car park. It was a pleasure for Stonnall Phoenix to host a quality team and we wish our friends all the best for the rest of their season.
We look forward to playing again in the future.
Report by Pete H.
Message from the Manager
Being a relatively new Club in WJYL and a very rural team it was a great honour to be asked to host this friendly on behalf of the league.
Leixlip are a team from Dublin who play to high standard as we found out!
They are a well established club with something in the region of 22 teams from grassroots to seniors, should they win their last few remaining games they will play in the Irish Premier League which I’m made to believe is of a high standard.
I have asked Terry to keep me informed as to how they get on with their promotion chase.
Both the players, coaches and the odd parent who travelled with them were of impeccable behaviour and manners and showed the utmost respect to all of us at Stonnall Phoenix Juniors, it really was a fantastic day.
Both of Leixlip coaches, Brendan and Terry have sent recent emails thanking us for the time we took to make them welcome.
I would like to thank Dawn and The Old Swan in the village for accommodating everyone afterwards where we all enjoyed the food and several beers of course!
I think the highlight of the day was after both sets of teams had eaten they all decided to go into the carpark and play ‘one bounce’ This really is how football should be played and socialised.
Our invite to Dublin is a very warm one and I have assured both Brendan and Terry that we will definitely be visiting them in spring of next year – we may even let Moms come along, well someone’s got to carry us home after the Guinness factory tour!!
Thankyou parents and players of Stonnall Phoenix Juniors for making it an enjoyable day for our visitors.
———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Sun, 5 Nov 2017 17:43:59 -0000
Subject: Re: Match on the 5th
Thanks again for today as it was a pleasure for us to play your Team.
Great bunch of lads along with all the people we met.
We enjoyed the day and company and both Teams seem to get on well considering they experienced a game in the car park after they played each other.
Don’t forget the open invite to our place come 2018.