Youth team had a day off vs. AKS

It seemed we left it all at our game against Juventus given the intensity of that match on Sunday. Yes, we had 1 day of rest but the sizzling heat this morning was not helping. We were up against AKS who had 3 or 4 good players but it still remained a team we must beat.

The team started ok managing to keep the possession and let the opponent chase the ball. However, they managed to get behind Max & Kevin on a through ball to finish 1 on 1 against Jay and score. We tried to stay calm and pressuring them into their half but AKS keep threatening us in counters. Maybe we were too high up on the field, maybe our legs were too tired or maybe we were just not able to find the right solution… Anyway, they scored again from a similar situation. Obviously, after being 2-0 down our players not in a good mood. We started to focus on negative things… Then, it becomes difficult to play football.

We still managed to score a very nice goal to get back in the game with our usual play from the side. Daniel outplayed the last defender and chipped the ball over the keeper.

At halftime, we knew we could still turn this around. We tried our best and managed a couple of good crosses in the box but we failed to have the final kick to score. By that time, AKS was now defending with 9 players and didn’t come over their half anymore… Kevin got the best chance to equalize with a header on a corner. With 15 minutes to go, we got an unnecessary red card at the worst moment for the team.

We pushed everyone forward and tried our best to get that goal but instead, we gave away a free kick at a perfect sport for AKS. They scored to make the final score 3-1.

[ Youth Tournament ] Pudong AKS United 3-1 Shanghai Lions FC

We knew that at a point in the tournament due to the severe schedule there would be a time we would lose our grip on the situation… It was today! The players & coaching staff will learn from this experience and we will move on. There is nothing better than to learn from a bad experience and turn it into a positive one. That’s life!

Let’s keep our act together and play one more match tomorrow. Overall, it was a great tournament and a good experience for all of us.

Freek, Pat & Nick

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