Well, after weeks of preparation, unbeaten in “qualifying” with a set of results that suggested we could do well and go far in the Creative Cup, we went and did an England and bombed out early doors, shattering the misplaced hopes and dreams of rest of the office.
A combination of a tough group, below par performances and key injuries was our downfall. In the opening match we were slow out the blocks and got beat 3-1 by a very good McCann side. Things got back on track with a late 1-0 win over Add People before the 1st set of matches ended with a 1-1 draw with Code Computerlove.
However, in game 2 our defensive rock Rob Hillyard went down after an innocuous coming together of bodies, and didn’t get up for a while. Having him miss the next 3 games was a blow as we had no subs or defensive awareness. I also saved a shot full on directly on the old pods so today we are the walking wounded (Rob has actually just text me to tell me he’s on crutches with suspected ligament damage!).
In the second round of group games we mirrored our first 3 games by losing to McCann, beating Add People and drawing with Code Computerlove – this was our final match, had we won we’d have gone through and missed chances late on to do so. We finished 1 point behind them on 8 points, which would have been enough to go through other groups and not bad for 3rd place. That said, had we gone through our next game would’ve been against eventual winners Gyro so I doubt we would have made it any further as they were pretty good (pretty as in extremely).
All in all, a little disappointed but it was a great day and good to take part in the tournament, it really is the taking part that counts as otherwise 32 teams wouldn't have made the effort. The whole thing was organised very well and hats off to @ianjamescox for getting it all sorted as it all ran very smoothly from start to finish. And an even bigger well done for the £2,000 that was raised for charity - a stirling effot.
Rumour has it, a Creative League is on the horizon, so we are very much hoping this happens as its good for the office and good for the digital scene in Manchester.
Can we win it? We are England, course we will.
But don’t count on it.
Match action photos and videos to follow tomorrow once we get them off our one fan's digital camera.