Shane Concede Late but Take Positives from Draw
The Mighty Shane were denied their first win of the season as a last gasp goal saw the Eagles snatch a point in a 1-1 draw. Shane went into the game hoping to push on from their impressive opening day performance, but started slowly and struggled to get their game going in the first half. Off the ball, they were too slow in closing down the Eagles and winning loose balls, allowing the opposition time and space to move the ball around well. With the ball, the lads looked uncharacteristically rushed and struggled to put any moves together of significance. However, they still had their well drilled defence to thank as, despite bossing possession, the Eagles weren't able to carve out any clear openings and the teams went into the break at 0-0.
The second half saw the boys really step up and take the game to the Eagles. Playmakers Mamadi and Zach were able to exert more influence, Cesar came on and combined brilliantly with Felipe down the left side and Pat’s hold up play allowed the midfielders to push on and get into the game. Shane’s improved passing and control of possession paid dividends when, midway through the second half, a great move saw Pat lay off the ball to Zach, who beat a defender before seeing his shot deflect into the path of Mamadi. The Gambian midfielder made no mistake as he continued his fine scoring run for Shane by tucking the loose ball into the bottom corner from the middle of the box.
After creating a few more half chances and looking dangerous, the Eagles began to turn the screw in search of an equaliser. Shane’s defense was looking comfortable though and still the chances wouldn't come the way of the opposition. However, with time running out, and under pressure from some aggressive Eagles players, the referee wrongfully awarded a free kick on the edge of the box in the last minute against Sam, who’d actually won the ball. The free kick was curled into the top corner and the game ended moments later at 1-1.
At full time the boys were understandably disappointed at both not hanging on and the injustice of conceding to a free kick that shouldn’t have been. However, upon reflection, a draw was a fair result on the balance of the game. The team can hold their heads high at having held two of the stronger teams in the first couple of games, and of course continuing their unbeaten run.
Attention will now turn to their next game against JFC at Fuhe on March 5th, kicking off at 3pm. Shane will go into the game with confidence and will be looking to grab their first win of the season against a team they impressively beat at the back end of last season.
Man of the Match: Felipe - The Colombian winger turned in a brilliant performance as the Eagles midfield were unable to handle him. His all round game contributed greatly to Shane’s performance as he was full of running, beating the opponents time and again and was an important outlet to get the lads further up the pitch. He also showed impressive defensive awareness and drive as he covered the full backs by putting in some excellent ball winning tackles.