It was a dark and gloomy morning on October 28th when the third team arrived on the legendary grounds of USVV Odysseus. It had rained cats and dogs the day before meaning the astro pitch the men would be playing on had received a nice coating of water. Furthermore, the temperature in which this fixture would be taking place was on the lower side of the spectrum and the complaint could already be heard. The team was feeling confident they could best the opponent (Woudenberg) in these, somewhat, poor conditions as Woudenberg was seen enjoying a leisurely cigarette as Odysseus 3 was heading towards the pitch. Donned in their new training kits the Ody men began their warming up with intensity and hubris. While Woudenberg was nowhere to be seen Ody had started the last phase of the warming up, shooting on goal. The balls were flying into the back of the net, only adding the Ody’s confidence. Finally Woudenberg was seen waltzing onto the pitch without a care in the world. Their warming up mostly consisted of kicking the ball around.
When the whistle was finally blown to mark the start of the match it was immediately clear that Woudenberg was not going to take initiative. However, even this game plan would bear fruit as Klaas played a scandalous pass, which was meant to reach Youp, in the very first minutes of the match. This pass would be intercepted by the opponent who was able to capitalise on this massive mistake making it 0 – 1. Odysseus would keep the initiative in the first half and were able to generate a significant amount of chances but sadly were not able to convert them. A 1-on-1 from Mathieu, an excellent shot from Joren, a dangerous cross from Jaap and a few perilous corners. Sadly none of these opportunities would pay off and the men were headed back towards the changing room while 0 – 1 behind.
In the changing room the mood was not as negative as one would expect. Everyone was keenly aware the match wasn’t lost yet and as Ody had the initiative with plenty of chances there was still a chance to turn the game around. They just had to prove it on the pitch.
The second half of the match begun as you would expect, Woudenberg were taking their time and waiting for Ody to make mistakes. Odysseus were making precious little mistakes and at the same time creating some worthwhile opportunities. This streak, however, wouldn’t last very long as Woudenberg would be able to score from a counter, putting them 0 – 2 ahead. From this point onwards the match would take on a slightly different form. As Ody were becoming desperate they started to take more and more risk, fouls were becoming more common and it seemed the referee was losing some control (and his eye sight) over the match. The high pressure Ody was putting on Woudenberg increased the number of solid chances they were able to create but it also left the defence understaffed. Woudenberg were able to capitalise on this multiple times in a very short amount of time. Ody was not given the chance to process what had happened before they were losing 0 – 4. Once again two counters. As you may expect, Ody still had the initiative and were still pressing high. Sadly all this effort would be for naught as the game ended 0 – 4 for Woudenberg.
As many Ody 3 players and the coaches will tell you the score did not in any measure reflect this match or do justice to the effort the entire team put in. It was, however, a valuable lesson in where the team was still lacking and where the weaknesses remain. I think I can confidently say that next time Woudenberg will have to bring more than cigarettes and beer to keep the three points away from us.