April 8, 2020
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You both come in, one touch. As soon as they start to
believe, it’s happened. (THE Z TEAM) Playing in the shadows
of the 2012 Olympic Park are Hacquenye Football Club,
sons of Turkish immigrants all born and raised
in London’s East End. They compete in the famous Hackney and Leyton
Sunday League, the lowest tier
of British Football, and with only
three games left to play, are bottom of the table
and need a huge change in fortune to avoid relegation. We have to get
at least four points, at least. So if we draw today
and if we win next week, we will stay in the division. We’ve still got three games, so
hoping we can grab some points out of them
and stay in the division. All season Hacquenye
have conceded early goals. Today is no exception. Everything’s just going
downhill. I really don’t know how we’re
going to stay in the league. We are in a very
difficult position now. The main problem is stamina. Stamina, that’s the problem.
I see in the team as well. Halfway through the game,
everyone’s breathing heavily, looking down, they’re all
trying to get a bit of a rest. Defending corners, set pieces
has always been a problem. It just doesn’t happen.
We’re always losing. And every time
we’ve given away a set piece, for me it’s like
we’re giving away a penalty. But we have to score, we have to score at least the
first half, one goal. They have already lost
13 times, and won only once. Desperate for points,
they are leaking goals. Lack of goal. I started off
good. I don’t know what happened. We used to have a great
winning capacity and mentality but that’s just disappeared on
us at the moment. To stay up I think we’re going
to need a miracle. I’m going to be honest, we’re
going to need a miracle. At half-time today Hacquenye
are already losing 2-0. Relegation looms. Have the team got what
it takes to get four points from their last three games? This is the last option, guys,
this is the last option. Well, not quite the last. What the team don’t know is
that help is at hand in the form of Olympic gold
medallist and Arsenal legend – Lauren. I want to call Mourinho,
I need Mourinho’s help. Lauren scored three goals at
the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney as his Cameroon team won a
thrilling final against Spain. In 2004 he was part of the
famous Arsenal team which won the English Premier League
without losing a single game, a feat which earned them the
title of Invincibles. Here we are,
you know, Hackney Marsh. Let’s see how the boys get on. (DAY 1) Coach Levent knows
that help is on the way, the team know nothing. He’s a very smart player
and I feel like I’m going to get a lot of benefit
from his experience. Who’s that? Come on, Aziz. I said that’s Lauren. No West Ham. One week, that’s all Lauren
has to make a difference and he’ll have to rise to the
new challenge of coaching. And I know it’s difficult.
You got beat 6-0. Let’s not talk about that. You know, that’s not the
point. If we concede a goal,
no problem. We keep believing what
we’re doing try to reverse the situation. They kick off the session with
a fun heading game designed to encourage a winning
mentality and shake off the cobwebs
from yesterday’s loss. Scoring goals in any situation is good for confidence
and morale. So we’re going to do
possession. We don’t need a goalkeeper.
This is possession. So, whoever he gets five
passes, it means one goal. Possession and movement
is the name of the game and it also works on the
players’ fitness and stamina. Four, five… 1-0, One, two… One, two, three, four, five… 2-0. The team’s best passer
is captain and shop-owner
Hasan Dugunyurdu, who until recently had
dedicated his whole life to football. I was about two when
I first started kicking a ball. I’ve always been playing
football. It’s what I love. I close the shop on Saturdays
at three in the morning, wake up for about eight,
and then I’m straight down to Hackney Marshes. We don’t need to speak
about how good Lauren is. It’s just going to be a
privilege for me to see him, speak to him,
play with him, train with him. He’s the type of player
who can make me sit down and think about football again. Losing is out of the window
for us at the moment. We just need to go out there, and I’m one of the captains
of the team… We need to go out there,
motivated, hungry… ..and believe in it. If you
don’t believe, you don’t get. If you don’t want, you don’t
get. It doesn’t matter who we’re playing against,
where they’ve played, what sort of background they
come from, what sort of talent they’ve
got. If we go out there
and we want to take the team to the next season in the same
league, we’ve got to win. (DAY 2) To win, Hacquenye need to work
hard, and to work hard they need to be fit. (STAMINA AND SHOOTING EXERCISE) This fun, simple finishing
exercise disguises the fact that their lungs and
legs are working to the max. Go! Go!
Don’t touch the ball, please. OK, next one. You’re the last one. Go on, go on, go on! Well done… No, no, no! Go, go, go!
One more, yeah, one more. Next is an exercise designed to
help the team play as a unit… (ATTACKING AS A TEAM) ..in both attack
and in defence. The whole team has
to pass the halfway line, otherwise it doesn’t count. The drill demands
the whole team to be past the halfway line before a striker can score,
ensuring that all the players concentrate on moving
forward as a unit. Say, for instance, the
whole team’s going up and defence stays behind, all it takes is one pass through the middle and a
through ball and it’s all gone. You have to push up,
you have to push up. That’s a goal.
Well done, well done. When I said to those guys
there, “Why you come here? “It’s not for the money, it’s
because you love the game.” If we believe in ourselves
and do what Lauren taught us, we can do it, yeah. Over 90% of Turkish immigrants
in the UK live in London. Ozan is the son of two
such immigrants who met who met and married
in 1990s London. When I was about nine I started
at Arsenal Soccer School. That was under the
Highbury Stadium. I mean, I’ve seen Lauren there
actually, but he’s obviously not going to remember me,
but, yeah I’ve seen him, Thierry Henri, Pires… That’s how I started football and I enjoy it quite a bit,
it’s my life, really. I watch it, do it, play it. The Invincibles are my heroes,
you know. They won the league without losing and I don’t
think any other team is going to do that again. Ozan is the workhorse of
the group. Lauren needs to get the very
best out of him if the team are to stand any chance of
survival or he needs to find someone
else. There has been a bit of
a fallout with me and my manager, due to work. Also some players
not turning up to training, and me getting tired,
getting home late, feeling like it’s not really
worth it, then waking up early on
a Sunday, so it’s been a bit down and up. With two strikers now available
to Lauren, he decides to adopt a new training strategy. (CREATING SPACE FOR STRIKERS) The first striker
moves to receive the pass from the attacking midfielder,
creating the space for the second striker to
occupy. I’m going be
for once the striker. Have a look… Give it… Give back. Yes. Look, I’m here. You leave the space, you leave
the space for that one to go. And then now
you move, but not like that. You have to shoot on target,
the target is there. Give it to me. Back one touch. No, no, they
won’t allow you two touches. They will smack you.
You know Martin? – Keown, yeah?
– Exactly. Stam, Jaap Stam. He will smash
your face. Like that, you know. So one touch, one touch. No! You are moving a bit early.
One touch back, now you go, A bit early. It’s OK. This is the way to be winning
and this is the way to prepare
the game for Sundays. It’s the final training session
before Sunday’s big match. Lauren and the team are happy
to see that their star player and passionate captain
have been able to make it. Hacquenye have struggled
all season at defending corners and scoring from them. Lauren and Levent
lay out their plan to change this before Sunday. Lauren has split the team into
two, with one group defending crosses in set areas, and the other
attacking them in the box. The aim is to get
the group to work as a team and move together. (ATTACKING CORNERS) And then as soon the guy
block your marker, you will run into here,
this here. You go fast, I’m here. They want the ball here. Keep up, keep up. As soon as they start
to believe, it’s happened. They scored two goals
in an instant…so… Another one.
So this is the issue. (MATCH DAY) Match day has finally arrived
and it’s time to find out if all the hard work has paid
off. Lauren is in high spirits, but the players have fear
etched all over their faces. Good morning. We have been
working all week for this game. We learnt a lot. Today is the biggest
game in our history. My only concern was how the boys
are going to face the match, because, you know,
the TV around, maybe the family will come up, they’ve never been
in this type of situation. It’s the moment
of truth for Hacquenye. Can they get three of the four
points they desperately need to avoid relegation? Is one week enough
to turn around their fortunes? The next 90 minutes will be
crucial. Listen, I’ll tell you
something. This is real. My blood come from leaders. The country of my father,
he was a leader, my grandfather was a leader. You know what that means?
We never give up. If we concede a goal,
we fight them back. We are not head down.
Come out and then you fight. All right? And this is real. They can be told,
they can be good, they can play football,
they can finish with me, but the one that come behind
me, my son, he will fight. This is my history,
I’m a warrior. So go out and do your work
and make yourselves proud. One, two, three, Hacquenye! (HACQUENYE 0 – 1
concede an early goal – again! Heads up, heads up. But they
continue to press forward. For this week to mean anything,
they will need to dig deep. Good. Well done. Well done. The team give away a soft
penalty. At 2-0 down
it’s a long way back. Will they remember what Lauren
has been teaching them all week about commitment? This is real. If we concede a goal,
we fight them back. I’m a warrior. We never
kneel under any circumstances. Stay in zone, stay in zone. The team continue to fight
for every ball and challenge, and star player Huseyin has started to influence the
game just as Lauren had hoped. Yes! Hacquenye pull a goal
back to make the score 2-1 at a crucial time. Lauren stays calm and
confident in his players. We managed to score a goal
before the first half ends, so we have chance now to level
the game in the second half and hopefully win it at the
end. With only
half an hour remaining, those three points seem
to be a long way away. But with Lauren’s words
still ringing in their ears, the team dig even deeper. From 2-0 down,
they’ve drawn level, something
they’ve never done before. I think they can
reverse the situation and score the third one. So this is the way. Right attitude, commitment, belief, belief
and good finishing. For the first time in months,
the team can sense victory is possible. They remain
organised in defence… ..determined in attack… ..and, above all, show real
belief just when they need it most. (HACQUENYE 3 – 2
THE CHALLENGERS) Lauren’s influence stayed
with the team as they went on to draw their next game,
saving them from relegation. Lauren is seriously thinking
about coaching full-time. Everyone that loves football has a little manager inside
of him. So that thing starts
to grow after this experience, An unbelievable experience. It reminds me
of when we won the Olympics. We were every time down, in
the final against Spain down, so we reversed
every time the situation, so this is the Olympic spirit –
never give up. Fantastic!

David Frank