Sunderland RCA travelled to Willington fr this pre-season friendly. With the manager on holiday and a number of players working or injured the team lined up as follows:
Ball,Lawrence, Cox,Carling, Errington, Coghlan,Milburn, Best, Annang-Colquhoun, Thompson, Richardson. (4-3-3). Subs: Fairley, Dorward, Wilson, Lennox, Bell, Partridge, Moncur,
The game kicked off with Willington taking advantage of the slope and although RCA had the better of the opening 10 minutes they were unable create anything in the final third.
The home side took the lead in the 16 minute when Coghlan was caught in possession a the ball played forward to Bates who rolled the ball home under the body of Ball.
RCA had masses amounts of possession but playing the long ball forward to three very narrow forwards was easily dealt with by a very well organised Willington defence.
To many times in the first half RCA slowed the game to a walking pace allowing the Willington players time to re group and use there pressing game to full effect.
At the start of the second half RCA made a number of changes but it made little effect as time and again the long worldy pass was cut out or overhit and Willington were quite happy to hit on the break which they did to great effect in the 58 minute when Oldfield was played in and made no mistake blasting the ball past the helpless Wilson.
RCA were totally outfought in midfield and seemed to have no plan B. There was very little passion or energy on show and Willington seemed to move through the gears at will and absolutely tore the RCA defence to shred in the final 10 minutes. A wonderfully taken free kick by Whitfield flew past the RCA wall and into the top corner of the net.
RCA recorded their first shot on target in the 82minute of the match when Fairley drifted in from the right but his effort was easily saved by the willington reserve keeper.
The final nail in the coffin came in the 86 minute when Storey burst into the box past two defenders before burying the ball into the back of the net with the RCA player still appealing for a hand ball (No VAR in this League).
Its easy to brush this result off as "Just a friendly", however we are a little over a week away from the start of the season and we are no nearer finding out what formation we are going to play or who will be regularly available to play. This was a poor performance from RCA but take nothing away from Willington, they had a game plan and they stuck to it, they were disciplined from back to front and we couldn't cope with it.
Our next match will be a real test as we welcome Shildon to Sunderland LGV Park in what will be a very difficult friendly and it goes without saying that we will need to perform 100% better than we did against Willington