[SIFL News] Round 2 – Games played on 24 Sep 2016

Premier League

Shanghai United tops table with win over FC Oranje. Shanghai 3United (above) takes second spot ending Shanghai Lions FC 50 matches unbeaten streak. Azzurri FC edges out Shanghai Japan FC.

First Division

Shanghai Vikings FC takes top spot with win over Kangbei United FC. Voodoo victorious over Anzacs FC. Voodoo Child ties Hstone HFC. Shanghai Tianfu FC beats Shanghai Cosmos.


In the Premier League, the Shanghai Lions FC did battle with newly promoted Shanghai 3United. Shanghai 3United knew to expect a whole new league of football in the Premier League and were not disappointed drawing the reigning champions of three years, the Lions, for the first game of the new season. 

Nervousness and anxiousness were common feelings but it was up to 3U to either turn that into something productive on the field or to let it eat into their play. Fortunately, they were able to pull that nervous energy together, turned it into great team play, executed clinical football and showed that they deserve a shot in the Premier League.

The Lions were continually pressuring the 3United defense for the first 10mins but the 3U back line was solid all across and dealt with every attack the Lions threw at them. It was then that 3U was able to find their rhythm and find some momentum pushing forward trading attacks with the Lions. 

The defense, midfield and forwards were linking up nicely throughout all areas of the pitch and things were looking optimistic to get some shots on goal. 3United were finally able to break through the Lions defense from a goal kick from keeper Cody Alhstrom. He hammered a ball down the right side of the field over the heads of the Lions defense to the feet of Joe Williams, who took a clinical touch to push it towards the corner. 

Williams then turned on a dime and blasted a low cross across the Lions box to Nick Law who smashed his first touch past the diving keeper for the first score of the game and a 0-1 3U lead. The Lions kept the pressure up looking for an equalizer, but the 3U midfield and defense kept them in check for the rest of the half, letting them only have one shot on goal as the score remained 0-1 at halftime. 

The second half started with the Lions pressuring the 3United squad hard on all fronts. But once again, the defense showed their worth and barely allowed a shot to be taken. This battle raged on for another 15mins with 3United slowly earning back ball possession and were finally able to take the wind out of the Lions’ sails with a second goal. 

Gordon Oneil won a ball down the right flank and gave a grounding through ball to Joe Williams, who was once again threatening down the right wing. Oraz Arslanow received the ball on the left and without hesitation he volleyed it into the back of the net doubling 3U’s lead to two. No more goals were scored and the 0-2 3U victory effectively ended the Lions’ 50 match undefeated streak. Man of the match honors went to 3U’s Pablo Carbonero. The boys enjoyed there stunning victory with a few beers in the last rays of summer.  

The night before, the Lions bode farewell to Charles Georg (above) who played for the Lions for the past 12 years. Freek Boelen: “Charles Georg won many trophies during his tenure at the Lions and helped change the Lions from a team into a club. He will return to France and we wish him and his family a safe journey and hope they can settle down well.”  The SIFL salutes Charles, great player, great effort and great attitude. You will be missed mate, good luck in France-ed. 


FC Oranje lined up to play the newly promoted Shanghai United. Oranje came with the largest squad ever of 26 players. Preparations were done in detail; just the subs management caused some headache for the weary Dutch Master. They took a team photo still wearing the old kit with the old pub sponsor on it. As a token of appreciation for their sponsor Cages they wore their jerseys the other way around. 

In the first half things went ok and the men in orange were able to put some pressure on the United goal. Oranje created 4 major chances versus United’s one. None of these chances got converted to goals and both teams went to tea with a 0-0 score line. 

In the second half, things went on quite evenly until the 20th minute. From a scramble in the box the ball accidently touched an Oranje player’s hand and the ref awarded a penalty. United converted the spot kick taking a 0-1 lead. This lifted United and some outstanding play was what followed. 

The Dutch then opted to put more men of up front and that yielded a huge chance when Marijn ten Wolde got played free in front of the keeper. The keeper did well to keep his goal clean and 0-1 it stayed. United’s sweeper Danyl Bondarchuk had a great game neutralizing several dangerous attacks. 

In the final phase of the match more men were put up front leaving Oranje’s defense somewhat exposed. United took advantage of that, scoring two more on the break sealing the deal with a 0-3 win. United’s goals were scored by Taubat Sahail, Nikolai Filatov and Ricker Alexander (below). Danyl Bondarchuk received man of the match honors. 

With this win United takes first spot in the Premier League for the first time ever and celebrated in style with authentic Russian moonshine. For the Oranje franchise it was a disappointing afternoon and they went on to drown their sorrows in Cages-best sports bar in Shanghai! Oranjeboom was there. 


Shanghai Japan FC crossed swords with Azzurri FC. Azzurri (below) prepared well for their season opener and put out a stellar performance of effective football. In the first half, Japan put up some resistance but the men in blue drew first blood with a first goal for a 0-1 lead at halftime. 

In the second half, they continued where they left off in the first and scored three more goals. Japan managed to claw one back at 1-4. They upped the ante and increased pressure on the Italian goal. They came back to 2-4 and 3-4 in the final phase of the match. It was squeaky bum time for the Azzurri but the clock ran out and Azzurri narrowly won the contest 3-4. 

Japan’s goals were scored by Tomoyuki Hirai, Kosuke Nagai and Hajime Sumitomo. Patrick Ruiz Arbeloa, Javier Del Valle and Antti Hintsanen (2) scored the Azzurri goals. Azzurri’s Nick Velani received man of the match honors. The men in blue went on to celebrate their first win of the season in Cages.


First Division

In the First Division, Voodoo did battle with the Anzacs FC. Voodoo lined up against the Anzacs under the heat of Shanghai sun with a threadbare 11 and two players who were ‘on the way’. An AWOL keeper meant midfield maestro Damo Pilat had to start off in goal for a makeshift side that had barely met beforehand and whose new kits were ill-fitting at best. 

That showed in the early exchanges as the Anzacs were on top and took a deserved lead via a David Li strike for 0-1. Voodoo hit back with a set piece, new boy Jordan ‘Rooney’ Weston powering a header in for 1-1, keeping it level at the whistle. 

The second period proved it was a game of two halves (and three keepers): Voodoo changing to a Brian Doyle-inspired 4-5-1 and pushing forward. Chances came and went, some looking harder to miss than score before a corner kick crashed against the bar and Gorgeous George Spencer bundled home in the ensuing melee taking a 2-1 Voodoo lead.

A third Voodoo goal from Jonny White (below with Spencer, Weston & Li), rifled home from outside the box on the half volley, put a an underserved gloss on the 3-1 score line but the hard-fought three points were welcomed regardless. Voodoo’s Evan Kleinberg received man of the match honors. Jordan Weston: “I don’t really look like Rooney as I’m not on the bench and scored!”

Hstone HFC slugged it out with Voodoo Child. VC were looking to build on from last years end of season good form. Starting with a tough encounter against the recently relegated Hstone HFC. 

The first half was played at a high tempo with end-to-end football, VC were on top, however HFC took advantage of some sloppy defending to snatch a 1-0 lead. VC struck back on the stroke of halftime when flying Dutchman Erik Johan showed Kam how to score a header from two yards out evening out the score at 1-1. 

After some mild refreshments during halftime, a change of the goalkeeping line and Kam off the field, VC were looking untouchable. Some sexy interchanges between the strikers and Santa Claus lead to Kevin Wright smashing in from five yards and a 1-2 VC lead!

As the game wore on tired legs and the chain-smoking Chinese fitness levels began to show. HFC bounced back to lead 3-2 with the help of an own goal. But the VC spirit was still there and Kevin Wright dispatched a last minute goalmouth scramble for 3-3 after another fantastic ball in by HFC menace fat Nick Lewis. Naizheng Tao and Zheren Liu scored for HFC. Kevin Wright received man of the match honors. 


Shanghai Tianfu FC (below) were pitted against Shanghai Cosmos. Tianfu’s recent field trip deep into German territory proved wonders as they went into the match fully rested and all muscles refreshed. First half started, Cosmos tried hard to expand and got a goal. Tianfu made several moves forward and one of their attacks resulted in a goal for a 1-1 score line at halftime. 

In the second half, Tianfu pushed through for the winner and they got rewarded with another goal. Cosmos tried to get on with their natural ways of spreading out but were unable to get another ball in the net. Tianfu played out the match for a final score of Tianfu 2, Cosmos 1. Tao Sun and Sheng Wang scored for Tianfu while Paul Baird scored the lone Cosmos goal. Tianfu’s Jie Zhang received man of the match honors.  


Shanghai Vikings FC (above) locked horns versus Kangbei United FC. This was a typical match of two halves. It took a while for the Vikings to get used to the warm temperatures as they struggled to keep Kangbei at bay in the first half. The ball went back and forth on great grass but a spectacle score of 0^0 was what showed after 45mins of football. 

By the time the second half started the Vikings were fully warmed up and pillaged their way through the sturdy Kangbei defense. Vikings Søgaard Søgaard and Kasper Ohrt were in fine form netting two each for a 4-0 Vikings victory. Søgaard Søgaard was voted man man of the match. 


The Big Bamboo Shanghai Shooters AFC played a friendly versus ZhouXuan FC. Nick Rose came back from death to bid a final goodbye to football in Shanghai during the Big Bamboo Shanghai Shooters AFC 5-1 win over ZhouXuan FC. And he did so in spectacular fashion. 

Nick Rose had a fantastic afternoon scoring all goals in the match. Five for the Shooters and then an own goal saving honor for ZhouXuan underscoring what a fine player and great character Nick Rose really is. We are all happy he is alive and kicking and we wish him good luck in the UK. 


STANDINGS

Shanghai International Football League

October 15 2016:  Round 3-League Matches

Venue: Shanghai Community & Sports Center-Waigaoqiao.

Visit the official SIFL website to find out more. http://www.eteamz.com/SIFL/

Tom Bus


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