Blue Coat’s football teams have had an excellent season, with the 1st XI winning the Gibbs Cup and the Thames Valley League, and reaching the final of the Walsh (Berkshire County) Cup – and the U13s winning their County Cup final.
The school’s first team won a tight Gibbs Cup final on Thursday 4th May, defeating St Bernard’s Grammar School Slough 1-0 at Thatcham Town FC, with the goal fittingly being scored by outgoing captain Luke Hayden. Although Hayden was clearly playing well below his usual standards as he struggled with a back injury, he scored the decisive goal towards the end of the first half and it proved to be the winner.
While St Bernard’s represented a threat for periods of the match, Blue Coat goalkeeper Dan Algar did not have a save to make from start to finish; a series of headers and shots went wide, and some blocked shots represented the Slough team’s best efforts, whilst cooler finishing from Blue Coat’s Ollie Vickery and Mike Green amongst others could have made the result look much more comfortable for the Sonning team.
The win was a fitting signoff for the members of the Blue Coat team playing their last match for the school: Luke Hayden, Cally Brighton, Ben Cole, Ollie Vickery, James Kirkwood, James McGonigle, Zac Moffatt, Will Howell and Matt Montgomery.
According to team coach and Blue Coat’s Director of Sport, Bill Voice: ‘These boys have all been a pleasure to work with and have made being 1st XI coach look easy, but I am aware of the talent in the squad…Two Thames Valley League championships, two Gibbs Cup finals (a tournament the school had never won until 2013, and now twice in a row), and two Walsh (Berkshire County) Cup finals, with only one lost to penalties, making one of only two losses and two draws in two fabulous seasons. I think it may be a while before we see the like again….. Actually, it might be a good point to retire as 1st XI coach!
A superb performance by the Blue Coat U13 team in the final of the Berkshire County Cup on Wednesday 3rd May, ensured that they lifted the trophy for the second successive year. In a tremendous match against the Piggott School on a large pitch at Thatcham Town FC, the team reversed the result from the March fixture, the only defeat this team had suffered all season. Two goals midway through the first half, by Jack Webb and James Hayden, sealed the win but it was very much a battling performance by the whole squad.
Team coach Simon Cook said: ‘This is a very talented squad of players who, with their current approach, can only continue to excel. They have been a pleasure to coach, with their ability and obvious enjoyment of the game, and the next football season cannot come quickly enough!