CHELSEA OLD BOYS 8 TURNKEY FC 4
There was an array of footballing heroes at Cobham today as Chelsea Old Boys faced Turnkey in a 12-goal-thriller.
Chelsea greats such as Clive Walker and Colin Pates lined-up against Ipswich legends Kevin Beattie and Jason Dozzell underneath the autumnal Surrey sun.
The Old Boys doubled their opponents' score in the final 15 minutes, with David Lee securing a second-half hat-trick, but the game was by no means a one-sided affair.
The visiting side was made up from Richard Moore's team, a succesful bidder at the Player of the Year Awards, who bid for the chance of his side facing the Old Boys.
And by the end of the first half, it looked as though the Old Boys were facing their toughest test of the season so far, with a 2-2 deadlock and Turnkey striker Mark Skipp proving to be thorn in their side.
The game started with a flurry of blue as Garry Stanley, Paul Canoville, Clive Walker, Lee and Hall all sent shots flying inches over the bar, while Skipp forced an acrobatic save from 67-year-old Peter Bonetti at the other end.
But it took until the half-hour mark for Chelsea to take the lead, when Hall broke into the box before smashing the ball into the top right.
Turnkey immediately retaliated with Skipp leading the attack, and within six minutes of the opener the scores were level.
James Moore latched onto a clever through-ball from Skipp before dribbling his way past Ken Monkou and calmly slotting the ball beyond Bonetti's reach.
Minutes later, Moore broke down the right while Skipp sprinted into the box to connect with a perfectly placed cross, knocking the ball into the top of the net from close-range, 2-1 to Turnkey.
But with only two minutes of the first half left, Hall evened the scores. After diving to connect with a Colin Pates cross, he headed in Chelsea's second.
Chelsea then took the lead inside the hour-mark, when Keith Dublin headed in an Ian Britton ball to the far post before Monkou wowed the crowd with Chelsea's fourth, lobbing the keeper from the half-way line.
'I saw the goalkeeper about eight metres off his line and I thought I would try and chip him, so I just made sure I hit the target, it was a training goal really,' said Monkou.
But Skipp was soon dancing his way into the box once more after latching onto a Bob Taylor ball, sending a screaming shot into the top-left from 18 yards out to give the visitors hope.
However, with the score now 4-3 to Chelsea, Lee stepped up to put the game beyond Turnkey's reach by hitting the back of the net from just inside the box.
Skipp tried to retaliate from the restart, forcing an athletic save from Bonetti before Lee made it 6-3 on the counter-attack with a clinical shot from a tight angle.
Seconds later it was seven when Lee and Hall teamed up to overwhelm the Turnkey keeper before Lee tipped the ball over the line.
But Moore and Skipp were not finished, and as Skipp searched for his hat-trick, heading the ball only inches over the bar in the process, Moore launched a shot from just inside the box, hitting the net to make it four.
'We just about took them with the pace up front,' said Skipp. 'In the first half we gave them too much respect and after 20 minutes we started to play against their weaknesses.'
'But in the end fitness took over and they run amok, but we still scored goals in the last 10 minutes, so it was a good game,' he added.
As the game drew to close Britton sent a close-range effort behind the line, despite calls for offside, to secure Chelsea's 8-4 win with the last kick of the game.
'It was a good run out today, the sun was shining and the pitch was brilliant. They tried hard but we came out on top,' said Walker.
'When you start scoring goals, everyone wants to get involved and we haven't been beaten this season yet,' he added.