2 games gone, 2 wins and seven goals scored, joint managers James Parker and Kevin Smith could be forgiven for thinking it’s an easy game. Although the managerial duo were quick to stress that there will be plenty of tougher games ahead, they were clearly delighted by the flying start their Paget team have made to the season.
The season got underway on Saturday against Khalsa Football Federation. On a sultry day at Coles Lane the weather, and the mood of the of supporters gathered at the ground for the first game of the season, was quickly matched by some squash buckling football from Paget, with flying wingers Delcio Neto and Harry Jackson attacking their full backs furiously down both flanks. Neto in particular was causing mayhem down the Paget right and the Bears were quickly on the front foot.
It came as no surprise to anyone in the crowd to see Paget take an early lead, when a free kick floated into the box by Jamie Smith, was expertly headed into the corner of the net by Ryan Butler. With their tails up Paget poured forward in search of more goals and it wasn’t long before the second goal arrived courtesy of another tremendous move down the right, a low ball into the box being buried into the corner of the goal by Harry Jackson who had made a great run across the defenders.
At half time and two goals up Paget came out for the second half with everyone expecting more of the same. With the game being played in searing heat though it was perhaps inevitable that the Paget players were not going to be able to keep up the pace they had shown in the first half. As the second half meandered on it was still something of a shock when Khalsa got themselves back into the game mid way through the half through a scrappy goal.
If anyone thought this was going to change the course of the game though they were to be disappointed, step forward Fahme Ibrahim. The Paget number 10, who had produced a sublime performance all afternoon received the ball just outside the box before curling a delightful shot into the top corner, leaving the Khalsa goalkeeper clutching at thin air. It was no more than the Paget man deserved for a man of the match display!
Final Score 3-1
So on we moved to Tuesday evening and another home game against Coventry Copsewood. More of the same would have been nice but what unfolded was beyond the hope of even the most staunch Paget supporters.
On the front foot from the first whistle Paget went into another early lead when Harry Jackson pounced on a defensive mix up and bravely intercepted before knocking the ball into the net. Paget were again pouring forwards looking for goals.
After a couple of great chances went begging though Coventry got themselves back into the game and for a 10 minute spell dominated Paget and looked like it was they who were going to run away with things. The Paget bench were furiously urging their team to raise their game and a tactical switch saw McKenzie Humpheys move from right to left back. Job done, Humphreys quickly snuffing out the threat which had been coming down the Paget left.
As quickly as Coventry had gained the initiative the tide immediately turned on a moment of brilliance from Paget centre forward Leslie Omorodion. A flowing move released Omorodion into the box in the inside right channel, with the crowd crying for him to shoot the Paget man to everyones surprise slowed the play down, allowing a Coventry defender to get back, but any doubters had not realised the Paget man’s artistry, as he cut back on to his left foot before bending an unstoppable shot into the top corner. Brilliant – simply brilliant!
This time the goal not only spurred Paget on but also seemed to knock the stuffing out of Coventry. With Jamie Smith, who appears to have found his calling at number 6 and Ryan Butler dominating the centre of midfield, Paget produced some breath taking football for the remainder of the first half. A flowing move down the right saw a great cross buried by Harry Jackson, heading into the bottom corner to make it three. Better was to follow though as Butler driving in from the left sent a great cross (or was it a shot) to the far post where the on rushing Omorodion smashed the ball into the net.
A shell shocked Coventry came out for the second half 4 nil down and did at least put up a fight in the second half and although Paget had their chances to increase their lead it was not to be and the game ended 4-0.
So with two games gone Paget sit proudly at the top of the league.
Whilst it is easy to look at the flowing football Paget have played in the opening two games and with goals come the headlines joint Manager Kevin Smith was quick to point out the part played by unflappable goalkeeper Tommy Doyle and in particular the contribution of centre halves, Captain Ryan Kimberly and Donald Egbon. “I think we’ve been superb all over the pitch, but our centre halves have been excellent in both games, not only in dealing with any threat but also with the quality of their play when we’re in possession.”
A clearly delighted Parker said “we’ve put down a marker now, the players have shown what they’re capable of and we mustn’t let those levels drop. I really hope that the attacking brand of football we’re playing attracts more people to come and watch as this really shouldn’t be missed!”