Monday, May 27, 2013

Match Report: Parklife B vs Loko

Sportsman's League (Div 2)
Sunday 26 May
Parklife B 1 vs Loko 0


Loko turned up on a beautiful sunny day in Dulwich for their last game of the season at the home ground of Parklife B, their Cup final nemesis, hoping for a good result.

Our team had a new-look about it. With eight regulars unavailable, Ivan and Roger had to make frantic, last minute phone calls to get a team out there and ended up with a healthy 14 in the squad.

No wonder Parklife B’s home games get called off on a regular basis. The pitch was perfectly manicured and Loko certainly looked like they were enjoying it as they dominated the early stages of the game. The ball got passed around sweetly on the smooth surface as Rhyce, Roger, Kevin and Issam were combining well.

At the back, Ivan was heading countless aerial threats out of danger and marshalling a new-look defence with Alex aka Yaya Toure slotting in nicely in central defence, Marcel running himself into the ground and Rodney keeping up with his good Poland tournament performance whilst John in goal (pictured above) remained his unflappable self.

With 10 minutes to go, Ismail had to come off due to an injury, which somehow destabilised the midfield as Morris admits he feels more comfortable playing in defence but now had to use his energy in the middle of the park .

Also, Loko were not creating in front of goal though and any chances coming their way were squandered, hence the half-time stalemate.

For the second half , Ivan replaced Andre with Ricko, who pushed forward whilst Roger - who’d  been acting as the lone frontman – now had to play a holding role.

Our end, an attack on our right side saw their winger overtake Rodney on the outside but his shot rebounded off the far post.

Various chances came our way, including a Kevin volley from just inside the box that flew wide, a Ricko shot that hit the keeper and a couple of Issam shots and a header but none of them really perturbed the keeper as these chances  were either not targeted or too tame.

With 15 minutes to go, a byeline cross from our left connected with a Parklife head at the far corner and , with the ball now goal-bound, John pulled off a miraculous save as he stretched out and palmed the ball off his goal.

Loko were now visibly losing their shape in midfield and running out of ideas and energy up front and looked like they’d have to settle for a draw.

Yet, fate dictated otherwise.

With one minute on the clock and with yet another Parklife attack on our right, Morris managed to clear a dangerous cross into corner. The corner kick flew above the whole Loko defence and got cleared only a few yards out where a Parklife B forward was lurking and he took a swift shot on goal that was saved on the goal line by Morris but the ball hit his arm. Penalty.

Their number 10 Chabbi took a few steps back, and despite foxy Roger trying to put him off  by standing in front of the ball and shaking hands with him before his spot kick, Chabbi despatched it calmly past John’s right.

Parklife B 1 Loko 0

Club Secretary Ivan said:   “We played well in the first half but tired in the sun in the second half. Credit to the non-regulars who helped out today though and I take it they enjoyed playing their part today.This has been a good season but it's now over - see you all on 11 August for our first in our series of pre-season friendlies.”

Man of the Match: RHYCE, who was his creative self today. Special mention to John for his heroics in goal.

Line-up: John – Rodney (then Johnny, 70’), Alex, Ivan, Marcel – Ismail (then Morris, 35’), Andre (then Ricko 46’), Issam, Kevin, Rhyce, Roger

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