Goals: Jan, Hermod, Joe, Forlan
In a cold rainy Friday night with an early kick off a 16 player squad with a lot of regulars missing turned into 12 players from the kick off. Several cancelled last minute and few where still trying to navigate their way through the end of the work day madness of the MTR, Rob please find us a solution!! 7.30pm on Friday night is never an ideal time to rush anywhere when traffic is banked up to the hill and people are 50 rows deep trying to get into already cattle like train.
This madness played into the gaffa’s mind with a very uninspiring pre speech of “Football is Football”. Don’t worry the “3 M’s” will come out one day “Motivation, Motivation, Motivation”. Even further baffled about where the gaffa was going to play everyone, I picked a team revolving around an injured Norwegian who looked like he was going to last less than a minute from the warm ups. This had a massacre written all over it against the current top of the charts USRC who had been warming up for 30 minutes before the game.
Kick off and immediately Miles playing in central midfield pulls a hamstring and has to come off like a wounded soldier hit by a an invisible sniper. Could this get any worse. In comes Randy into Centre midfield , Mav clearly knowing Randy’s state of mind or body shifts him to right wing and puts Nick Dashti into centre midfield. This was clear masterstroke and credit is due big time here because Nick Dashti played a blinder and Randy telling cross for our third made it all worthwhile. Sir Alex eat your heart out, send an Ozzie to the Premier League!!!
Then 5 minutes gone Jan get’s elbowed in the face and blood is pouring out, gaffa looks around and no one to play centre defence except himself. Jan was looking to make friends with their striker after the incident but I mentioned it was best if we just try to win the game instead and then you can give him a big kiss after the game. However somehow things sort of got back to normal, Jan with some treatment for the absent medics on the sideline and players started turning up from the wilderness. We started to play some decent football and creating chances.
Our opening goal after a few good chances for Hermod one of which the keeper did a great save came from another Norwegian Mr Janny himself, spiraling into the stratosphere he headed home with extra interest our first goal…it was inspiring stuff from the injured man.
We continue to play good football and could have easily gone to the break 2 or 3 up.
Half time and USRC came out of blocks with a spring in their step. Young Joe was facing backwards couldn’t get the ball clear and as you except Andy Mitchell was there to pounce on it and slot home the equalizer straight after the break. USRC had their tails up and the pressure started to mount. Thomas D and Jan along with Steph and Mav where having glorious games in backline and thwarted their every attack as we seem to struggle to get back into it.
However it was some magic from the other Norwegian which turned this game on it’s head. Hermod taking the ball about 40 yards out from goal after a delightful first touch beat two players in one move. He then progress forward to easily round several other defenders and then another before going one on one with the keeper. This time however he keeps his cool and slots it into the back of net with oncoming keeper. It was reminiscent of Maradona’s goal against England in 86 world cup quarters, well maybe I’m exaggerating just a tad.
USRC then had a golden opportunity to equalize straight away. Andy Mitchell found himself clear once again however this time Thomas Ma was there to close his angle and he knocked it wide….could this be our day. Now the game really opened up chances either way, however it was a superb run from Randy on the right with defying cross which found Joe who slammed home our third and saw wild celebrations from the Spartans none of which I have every experienced before in my years with the Spartans!!!
USRC where not finished and had a great chance after a player rounded Thomas Ma only to see Steven Y somehow acrobatically clear the ball from the line with his feet. It was an amazing save of the highest order and without hands!!! We started to get further chances in the game Jens had a terrific chance to give the treble for the Scandies but it wasn’t to be. Forlan who had a terrific second half found some space after nice lead up work from Hermod to slot home our fourth.
USRC scored a nice worked late goal after we shipped and changed a few players but it was all too late the game was ours. Everyone played out of their skins, it was the best performance so far and a fantastic win. Terrific turnout after the game saw us down some beers at USRC Club and in Wanchai, a late night but a terrific one at that. MOM went to Hermod just nicking one vote from Steven Y, everyone was MOM in this match.