So, I’ve been extremely impressed by this new team. I am now back in Sweden and playing for a team called Ljusdals IF. Yes, it sounds different than it looks and no, you won’t guess how to say it. Unlike the difficulty I found pronouncing this new team’s name, the transition to it has
been very easy going.
I got here and we had a game about a week later. I was stoked. We played against a team who derailed my season the last time I was here and was intrigued about getting a little revenge. We played IFK Huge, and no, that’s not pronounced like it looks either. But this team and I have some history.
Onto the good stuff. The game starts and we are an immediate threat. We have chance after chance and just can’t find that first goal. My team played with such composure, I want to use our game film to teach my players at home. We controlled the flow of the game and the tempo. But we were still on the hunt for our first goal well into the second half.
Then it happened. A beautiful through ball by Ellika to Sanna, a touch around the keeper, a scramble in the box, a shot, a rebound, another shot, a slide and a GOAL by Karin!!!!!! Celebrations all around! But wait, the sideline ref has a different story. He pleads that the first pass was offsides. No goal. But the team felt the momentum and knew we were on the cusp.
Again, we controlled the tempo and were beyond patient in the attack. Pulling them into a false sense of security. And then Karin takes on a player, and another comes to help but she beats them both! Then another, and as the ball is heading toward the end line she slides and gets a cross off. It heads towards our midfielder, Matilda. She thinks to shoot, turns around and takes another touch before blasting it into the goal past the keeper! No offsides, just a genuine hustle goal coming off of the back of some magic from Karin.
There’s a sense of relief that settles into the team. And then, the coach calls me over and it’s time for me to go in. Coming off the bench is a delicate science and I wasn’t sure I’d be able to do it. But I had no choice. I came in on a corner and that corner was cleared out for a throw in for us. Ellika and I make a switching run but the defenders don’t budge. So I check in front of one of them and then I hear it. Matilda calls my name from behind me and before I know it, I’m back heeling the ball to her off of the bounce of that throw in. She reacts, she actually seems like the only one to react and shoots it with her first touch and left foot! It feels like the ball is in the air for 20 minutes before it hits the back of the net!!! Matilda with the second goal of the match and me with the unlikeliest of assists! The back of my back heel? With my first touch of the match? Who would’ve thunk it!?
Needless to say, that first game will go down in history as one of my favorites I’ve ever played. And I think I played a total of 7 minutes!
Take chances. Be an influence. Make a difference. Do it with flare 🙂