Williams’ weekend brace

England’s blind squad travelled to Germany for two fixtures as part of the 2014 Insel Cup celebrations at the weekend and came away with a creditable 1-1 draw and a 1-0 victory in Ilvesheim.

Johnathan Pugh’s Three Lions received a warm welcome both in terms of hospitality and the weather, but playing conditions for both matches were demanding.

Saturday’s match kicked-off in mid-afternoon and was a nervy, scrappy game as both sides attempted to gain an advantage.  

As the battle for dominance continued, the foul count rose and Germany were awarded a free-kick just outside the area which defender Mulgheta Russom struck into the corner and beat the dive of England’s Dan James.

This was the first goal that England had conceded in eight matches it was a chance for the players to show their mental resilience.

And they responded in fine style with Robin Williams’ mazy run ending with a controlled and well-placed finish to level the scores.

The second half started with Roy Turnham creating a couple of chances, one of which struck the bar. Williams then forced a save from the German ‘keeper whilst James also kept out an eight-metre penalty at the other end, before the game finished in a draw.

Sunday morning  was even hotter than the previous day as the teams met again in front of another large crowd.

But this time, England were much more dominant and won a series of eight-metre penalties, with Keryn Seal and Dan English both forcing saves from the German ‘keeper.

That pressure paid off in the second half though, when Williams completed another trademark run with a fine finish past the German ‘keeper after 35 minutes.

As Germany chased an equaliser, England ‘keeper James added to his growing reputation with a series of fine saves from eight-metre penalties to keep the hosts at bay as the Three Lions comfortably saw out the match to enjoy the respect and appreciation from the German spectators.