UNBEATEN Redditch might have expected a comfortable win against a Yardley team that was still looking for their first points of the season in the Warwick League Division One.
But the home side put up their best performance of the season to date, with their defence managing to thwart the Redditch forwards and their midfield increasingly matching their opponents as the game went on to lose by just a single goal.
Having absorbed everything that an increasingly frustrated Redditch squad could throw at them, a brave Yardley team won a penalty corner with just over five minutes of this exciting contest to go.
Zach Jarvis’s drag flick was aimed directly at the top corner of the Redditch net only for the goalkeeper to pull off a stunning save to tip the ball over the bar and protect the visitor’s narrow 1-0 lead.
Redditch scored what proved to be the only goal of the game after 15 minutes, following up a penalty corner after the Yardley defence had managed to stop the initial shot. The visitors had the better of the first half but wasted their chances and Yardley hung on grimly to prevent any further scoring.
As Yardley continued to impress the spectators, the game became much more even. Yardley began to win more of the ball with their pressing game becoming more effective. Redditch began to resort to long balls that mainly went harmlessly long or wide and added to the visitor’s frustration. As their discipline wavered, two Redditch midfielders were shown two minute green cards and a third received a ten minute yellow penalty but Yardley couldn’t take advantage of the numerical advantage they enjoyed.
The exchanges became more frantic as full time neared and Yardley continued to press with the Redditch goalkeeper making that all important save to the despair of the Yardley team who had threatened to snatch a point at the end of the game.
Yardley next travel to Stafford for another tough fixture this Saturday.