As legends’ opponent couldn’t play this Sunday, we could start our SPL Senior new season with our first match versus the FC Kickers instead. We had a late kick-off on a wet AstroTurf at Wellington College. Several new players were ready to make their debut.
Our intention was to make a quick impact by using the speed of our wingers on the flanks. Pat in the goal with Laid and Benji in the back to take care of the defense. It worked out well as we took the lead after 5 minutes with a good finish from Romain. Helped by the wind we kept the pressure on the FC Kickers defense. We got more opportunities but failed to finish them. Tyron had a great chance but his free header went wide. Our second goal was quite lucky as a poor corner was missed by several players and ended up at Laid’s feet in the back an easy tip-in gave us a 2-0 lead at half time.
In the second half, our intention was to make the third and use the new players for the last part of the match. However, we failed to take our chances and as the match went on we lost our grip on the midfield and the Kickers got more and more possession and were dangerous on the counter. When they scored the 2-1 it was clear the last 20 minutes were not going to be easy. They had the best chance to make it 2-2 with 5 minutes to go but lucky for us the ball went over. It stayed 2-1 three points for us but it was evident that most players were not up to their usual level yet.
It was a very hot Sunday 30 with degrees and no wind! We were facing the Shanghai Bulls, a new french veteran team in our pre-season opening match.
In the first 20 minutes, we played our best football with good pressure and fast combinations. We let the Bulls ran after the ball and tried to keep the possession. A great cross from Nico on the left found Bob at the far post and he headed the ball in the right corner to give us a 1-0 lead.
In the next 20 minutes, we dropped the speed and level partly due to the heat… The Bulls who didn’t have many shots on target yet equalized by a deflected strike!
In the third 20 minutes, we got our best chances to bring the match to bed… James came close with a flying header and Tomas went one on one with the keeper. It was Nico (in good form in this match) who gave the lead back to us with a fine strike.
In the last 20 minutes, there was plenty of space as players were getting tired running up and down the pitch. The icing on the cake was a great run by Imad who found Rick who finished calmly to make the final score 3-1 for the Legends against Shanghai Bulls.
The beers after the match tasted good. On the 22nd of September 2019, we will play our first league match of the season 2019/2020.
Matty Ward is an exceptional youth player who played both in the youth & the senior Lions’ teams. During these last 2 years, he won multiple awards such as Top Scorer & Best SPL Young Player. He stood-out with his determination to improve himself whenever he was on the field either at the training or at the matches. We wish him success in England and hopefully, he can bring his football career to the next level!
I have known Matty for 4 years now and he has been a real pleasure to coach. He gained a lot in his mental and physical development and I know he still has more to give. Thank you and I wish you all the best in the future !
The first time I met Matty it was when our friend Christian decided to promote him to the senior team of Century Park. A little boy that had a good touch with the ball. After being his coach for more than 2 years I had the pleasure to see him grow quickly. I hope I have helped him in some ways. And the best part for me was to actually play with him in the games and watch him do what he does the best. Please don’t forget us Matty and remember you are always welcome here!