It was a memorable day last Saturday ! Mainly because of the extreme winter condition we had to play in. The temperature was not above zero but it was the strong wind which caused havoc as it felt like – 10 ! The key was to stay focused as the opponents were our old rivals the Shooters and we needed a result to keep the title race in our own hands.
It was great to see that despite the circumstances we had a team of supporters under the leadership of Big John cheering the players. We decided to play a compact squad but with 3 strikers upfront. The Shooters opted for Kevin as lone striker upfront which allowed us to build up the play from the back. The first big chance was not for us but for the Shooters as Kevin thought he certainly scored but our goalie Radouane saved it. On the other end, a slip up in the Shooters defence and a good combination play between Dani and Az put Dani in front of Chris Banners the Shooters goalie and nicely finished it to give us the 1-0 early lead. It was a good start and with the help of the wind in our backs we created a few other opportunities and started to win most battles in the midfield. After a good half time talk in the dressing room this time we knew that if we kept the focus on our defense we could win the game. Shooters pushed forward with long ball by order of Zippy in the box but Radouane seemed to be unbeatable on the day as well our veteran Legend Jeremy cleared one ball of the line with his head. On the other side the Lions played well on the counters and actually it was a great game to watch. With 7 minutes to go on the clock Dani decided the fate of the Shooters as he scored the 2-0 on a fast break. The Lions didn’t let go this lead and took all 3 points and with ReUnited losing against Japan 1-0, it put us back on top, with 1 point ahead but with 1 game in hand and only 6 games to go ! Our next game in the league will be right after CNY against ReUnited and we are looking forward to this game !
Sadly, after the game, we had to say goodbye to Yngven and Therese who are moving back to Norway and we thanked them for their outstanding games for the Lions and the Lions Legends teams. We hope they will come back one day and wish them well back home !
On Sunday, the games were cancelled which proved a good choice as the day temperatures were -6 degrees in Shanghai ! Let’s keep the momentum going and all comes down to the trainings. We are fully in the run for both SIFL and SPL titles ! Lets go for it Lions !
Cheers Frozen Freek