Sunday, March 08, 2015

Match Report: Parthenope vs Loko

Sportsman's League,
Senior Amateur Division

Sun 8 March 2015
Parthenope 1 vs Loko 4


At 8am this morning, things looked very rosy for Loko. We had a full squad (13 players) and, at long last, firepower with three proven goalscorers available to play.

Come 8:30am, things looked a bit more complicated with 2 of our forwards pulling out and one of our midfielders suddenly unavailable. Thus ensued a flurry of last minute calls to friends to make up the numbers.

Thankfully, Liam, a player who was watching his godson play on the next pitch agreed to play to the relief of the rest of the team who were now feeling more confident about holding their own against a team we felt was at our level.

Things got even better within a few minutes of kickoff on a great, dry surface that has served us well over the years and has seen us secure some great results.

On 2mns, Dom, our midfielder who used to play professional football at Peterborough made his mark with a very long throw in from the right hand side that found HAYDEN in the box who scored with a tap in at the front post from 1 yard out.

It is fair to say that this almost came as a shock to most of the team following a barren spell of 6 games and 540 minutes without scoring a goal!

The situation looked even more rosy when, on 18mns, Ollie played LIAM in from the middle of the park and the new boy confidently scored with a stunning goal in the roof of the net off the crossbar from inside the box.

Loko were fluent, didn't panic and were repelling attack after attack. In the middle of the park Dom was trying to spray the ball long down the wings, Matt was showing his physical presence. Further up, Hayden was torturing his marker whilst Dave was playing wide and combining well with the rest of the midfield.

Up front Ollie was having a very good game, running rings round his markers and twisting and turning whilst Liam was playing with aplomb.

Parthenope were still dangerous though as evidenced by a shot that struck the woodwork on 32 minutes and another cross from the right hand side that was handballed by Ivan but the ref didn't see it - yet another sign that maybe, just maybe, today was going to be Loko's day.

Half time: Parthenope 0 vs Loko 2

Perhaps the Loko-men didn't heed skipper Matt's warning that the game wasn't won yet. Indeed, on 49 minutes, Parthenope pulled one back when a cortner was cleared by the Loko defence but their gigantic number five was lurking in the box and slotted the ball past Ismail from 6 yards out.

Parthenope 1 vs Loko 2

Loko were now a bit more hesitant and lacking composure. Mark, who was having a good game, started getting frustrated in one particular instance when he miskicked the ball and blamed himself for eating too may hamburgers in the USA on his recent holiday (!).

But shortly after that Loko were solid again. On 57 minutes Ismail saved what looked like a sure goal by jumping like a youthful frog out of a pond and catching the ball at the far post. Our goalie repeated his feat 5 minutes later by saving a loose ball closer to the ground and saving Loko once more.

On 66 minutes, Liam crossed from the right and found HAYDEN at the near post who outjumped his marker and placed a powerful header to the left of the keeper and into the empty net.

Parthenope 1 vs Loko 3

Then on 76 mns Loko definitely put the game to bed when Ollie played the ball over the top from the left hand side and found DAVE F who scored with a half volley at the far post from a relatively tight angle.

Game, set and match - and what a lovely, sunny day it was too!

M.O.M: Ollie played very well on his own upfront but the award goes to HAYDEN who today played his best game for Loko ever - all energy, determination and two very well taken goals.

Line-up: Ismail - Neil, Gary, Ivan, Mark  - Dom, Matt, Liam, Dave F, Hayden - Ollie

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