Authors: Rob Childs
“Hot-shot!” yelled Harry.
Harry always shouted âHot Shot' when he scored a goal. That was why people called him Hot-Shot Harry.
Harry had just scored his second goal. It gave Gateway School a 2â0 lead in the final of the local Five-a-Side Festival.
Brad was the team's main defender. He ran towards Harry, and they slapped hands.
“Great goal, Hot-Shot!” cried Brad. “I bet we win the match now.”
Just then the other side took a shot at goal. But Gateway's goalie Charlotte dived and grabbed the ball.
“Good save, Charlie!” cried Harry, giving her a thumbs-up sign.
At half-time, their teacher told the players not to relax.
“Remember, anything can happen in five-a-side soccer,” Mrs Phillips said. “The game isn't over until the final whistle.”
The second half of the match had only just started when the opposition scored.
The striker for the other team sent the ball flashing past Charlotte. She didn't stand a chance.
Harry was furious.
“You're rubbish, guys!” he shouted. “Where was the marking?”
“Cool it, cousin,” said Leela. She was the other striker. “It wasn't anybody's fault.”
“Don't tell me to cool it!” snapped Harry. “I'm captain.”
Leela gave a little shrug and turned away. She knew there was no point in trying to argue with Harry.
They didn't speak to each other for the rest of the game. Not even when Harry scored a third goal.
“Hot-shot!” he cried. “That's my hat trick.”
The three goals made Harry the team's top scorer in the tournament. He had beaten Leela's total. She knew he wouldn't let her forget it.
The six members of the squad got their medals and Harry held up the silver trophy for the cameras.
“Well done, everyone,” Mrs Phillips said. “Gateway School will now be in the County Finals next month.”
“We seem to do better at five-a-side,” said Brad. He was sitting on a bench in the boys' changing room and gazing at the medal in his hand. “We've lost too many matches this season playing eleven-a-side on a big pitch.”
“Yeah,” Harry agreed. “That's because we get rid of some of the dummies when we play with just five players.”
Brad shrugged. “So which dummies are left in the five-a-side team?”
“My cousin, for a start,” said Harry.
“Leela? She's good. I mean, she's dead fast,” said Brad.
“Yeah, but it's not just speed you need, is it?” argued Harry. “You need a bit of strength and skill on the ball.”
“I suppose so â but she can still score goalsâ¦”
Brad saw the look on Harry's face, and shut up. He didn't want to be put in the captain's list of dummies.
In the girls' room, Leela and Charlotte were also talking.
“He's cute, your cousin,” said Charlotte with a grin as Leela came out of the showers, drying her long black hair.
“Harry?” Leela asked in surprise.
“Who else? How many other cousins you got?” asked Charlotte.
“I've got hundreds. And none of them are cute.”