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You can keep your Manchester United verses Liverpool, throw aside your Tottenham verses Arsenal and laugh in the face of Barcelona verses Real Madrid, for true football rivalry, true football war, there is only one place to turn…Lancaster University. I am talking of course about the university’s two founding and original colleges, Lonsdale and Bowland College. Tension was etched onto the faces of the spectators and nerves creased the brows of those readying themselves to play the game that matters most, for a prize worth more than any trophy known to man; pride.
The game kicked off and the passion was immediately evident within both teams. Big tackles flew in, heightening the atmosphere amongst the fans. It was a commanding start by the Lonsdale midfield, whose desire to win every challenge enabled a grasp on possession and allowed their more creative players to start finding gaps in the spirited Bowland defence and create chances on goal. The exciting though aesthetically displeasing Alex Lanigan took the ball from left back and after a swift one-two he was off, making a direct course for the Bowland goal. He flew into the area ready to strike, but was taken out by a Bowland leg and the referee pointed immediately to the spot. A confident Lanigan never looked like missing as he almost nonchalantly rolled the ball into the middle of the goal as the despairing keeper dived for the corner. In this tough fought battle, it was Lonsdale who had struck first.
It stayed that way until half time and although Lonsdale held the lead, it was clear this game was far from over, as both captains readied their respective teams for the game to recommence. Bowland had a bright start to the second half and it was thanks to the titanic efforts of the Lonsdale defence and sheer determination of Grant Goodband, the Lonsdale captain, that Lonsdale were able to keep their lead. However this could not last forever and eventually Bowland mounted a fluid counter attack up the left side with quick movement and accurate passing followed by a neat finish by Logan. It was now 1-1 and anybody’s game.
However, it was once again Bowlands discipline that let them down. A trip 30 yards from the Bowland goal left Lonsdale with a freekick in a tantalising position, and once again Lanigan stepped up. He came in from a short run up and looked to have completely miss hit the set piece, until luckily a ricochet off the Bowland wall caused the ball to fly into the post. Lonsdale striker Imisi Adefala latched onto the ball and with near Messi-eske technique controlled it and acrobatically volleyed into the top of the net. It was a moment of sheer class and both sets of supporters couldn’t help but be impressed at the man’s ability.
And 2-1 it was to stay until the final whistle called a truce between these two old enemies until they meet again. It was a tough game, excellently refereed and enjoyed by all who saw it, and all it leaves now is a tantalising taste of this year’s Founders, and the phenomenal event it is destined to be.