The final whistle went and the 23 bodies occupying the huge pitch at Fundacion de Vallecano trudged off. It was hot. Like, really hot. Too hot for October and certainly too hot for a game of high-intensity football that FC Británico were so used to delivering. Following some limp handshakes and pats on the back, the FCB boys made their way towards the changing room in search of the cool of the inside and the promise of much-needed water. You wouldn’t have known they had just run out 5-0 winners in another dominant performance, taking them to two from two for the season, having scored eleven goals and still yet to concede.
The first away game of the new term saw FCB head to Vallecas, buoyed by the previous week’s dominant win and the prospect of a new medical bag. But panic had struck, two key aspects of last week’s win were missing: our keeper, Marco – who had injured himself with a side strain, and the magnetic whiteboard – a vital figure in every team talk delivered by Coach Rami.
The first of these problems was solved by the ultimate team-player and ever reliable Paco. His safe hands, reassuring presence and tight groin filled in between the sticks behind a slightly changed back line, with Will moving to left wing back and Omar returning to the centre of defence alongside Arren, Gonza and Joe on the right.
This defensive line did well to soak up some early pressure in the first half, refusing to give Vallecas’ attacking three much room to operate and create any significant chances. The centre backs won their aerial duels and the wing-backs utilised the wide pitch well to make attacking inroads.
The defense was ably supported by a new-look midfield, with captain Calum and Eric Murphy coming into the starting lineup, while Padraig remained the focal point of a midfield triangle.
Despite this general control, it took 25 minutes for FCB to find the back of the net for the first time.
Question: Does shouting ‘get in the box’ to your striker count as ‘half an assist’?
Answer: Yes, if you’re Rami.
With this sort of tactical analysis and insight it was impossible for FCB not to chalk one up after a while, and that’s exactly what happened when Harry’s curling cross found Ish – in the box, as per Rami’s orders – and the striker nailed a header past the helpless Vallecas keeper.
The second came not too long before the end of the half when Padraig did what Harry had failed to do five minutes earlier: go down when obviously fouled in the box. The Irishman made no mistake with the spot kick and FCB had doubled their lead.
The second half saw the heat intensify. But as the tempo slowed, FCB’s dominance only increased.
Fresh legs in the form of Ed – on at left back, Josh – replacing Arren in central defence, and Mats – in the centre of the park, saw the boys in black slowly run their opponents into the ground.
Continuing his fine start to the season, Harry scored a fantastic solo goal, latching onto a ball over the top and taking it past three defenders inside the area before putting the keeper on his arse and rolling it into an empty net.
It was a wonderful goal, and spelled the end of Vallecas’ competitiveness in the fixture.
Maca and Karlos joined the fray, and further tightened the screw, snuffing out any signs of attack down the right and through the middle. What was a convincing performance became a dominant one when Padraig scored two goals in the last couple of minutes to complete his hattrick and cap off another great win for FCB.
Vallecas were broken. They had a man sent off for dissent, who received some verbals from a midfielder who will remain nameless but was lucky not to get sent off himself.
And then the whistle went. The game ambled to a stop; there was no cheer of celebration, just a slow march back to the changing rooms in search of some much-needed shade.
Next Sunday sees the return to La Elipa, with FCB facing up against Club Deportivo Poligono. The forecast predicts highs of 30 degrees. Joy.
Man of the Match: Paco Garcia
Goal of the Match: Harry Newman
Dick of the Day: Will Sewell & Joe Simmons