17/03/2024 : Baycity Strollers Over 60’s – First round of WFLA National Cup




Paul Robinson



Injuries, illness, holidays and hibernation meant we went in to this tournament with a small squad to take on the challenge of three forty minute matches. It was quite an achievement that we managed to get through the demands of the day.  Although we were ultimately disappointed the last game showed our character and what playing for BayCity Strollers is all about.



Game 1

BayCity Strollers 2 Margate 4





Although we were to be thumped in the next game this was our most disappointing performance of the day. We made a great start with an early goal as Les perfectly teed up Jim to give us the lead.  Wheels were to quickly fall off as we conceded three quick goals, all very preventable, we lost it as a team giving possession away far too easily with us all being culpable. Second half we pushed to get us back in to the contest, at last some good passing as Chris set up Les to get us back into the game.  Unfortunately the two goal lead was quickly restored, despite our best efforts we were not able to make any meaningful impact . Hugely disappointing opening match and outcome, however, we couldn’t have any complaints as we were well short of the required standard.



Game 2

Bexley 6 BayCity Strollers 0



As previously mentioned this was a hammering, we were well beaten by probably the best team we have ever encountered.  Walking football England captains were on display as we were totally out played. They scored some cracking goals, generally in to the bottom corners as we were taught a lesson on possession, movement and the ability to make space. We were though unbelievably better in this game as we competed for the full 40 minutes. Les did have a great strike that was unlucky to crash off the outside of the post but apart from this we seldom looked like scoring.  Lawrence was congratulated for his performance by the opposing coach as we left the pitch.



Game 3

BayCity Strollers 2 Tonbridge Angels 1



Les 2


The weather was changing Here Comes the Sun.  This was more like it, we certainly started on the back foot which could have been a carry over from the last game.  Gradually we got in to it as we rediscovered a bit of confidence, our opening goal was a bit fortunate but it was about time we had a bit of luck.  It was Les I think who played in Gordon albeit at an acute angle, Gordon’s attempt was saved and the rebound somehow was kept in rather cheekily perhaps. Gordon reacted perfectly as he set up Les to put us a goal up.  We had chances to make it more comfortable but it was not to be, a deserved half time lead.



The second half begins as we quickly conceded the equaliser, all square again and game on. Despite conceding this was our most dominant half as we played with a bit more composure and belief.  If our opponents were to get through they had to get past Lawrence who was his usual self, as we blocked, tackled and actually seemed to decide that we would play much better by passing to ourselves rather than giving the ball away cheaply or knocking the ball out of play. A missed penalty didn’t give us any help but our persistence was at last to give us the edge. Mick held up well as Les found himself on the edge of the penalty area, despite the keeper coming out of his area Les was able to keep possession to give us the lead. This was it, we weren’t going to concede despite being pushed back, we even could have put the result beyond doubt.


A confidence and pride restoring win as we finished 3rd.


It was a tough day as I think the organisers need to look at playing time involved for the age group with most players in our squad playing over 100 minutes with keepers expected to play every minute of every game; the equivalent of three league matches in a few hours. Having said that I am full of admiration of our squad today, we showed great character and resilience to turn things around and end the day with a positive performance.



Thanks to the officials today as all games were well refereed and played in the right spirit.


So our season has come to an end.  I would like to personally thank each and every one of you for your commitment which saw us finish 2nd in the Kent FA Walking Football League.  Easily our best season so far, everyone has contributed and I am so proud to be your captain.


Thank you.  Already looking forward to the next one!

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