The firsts came out of the blocks quickly and were 2 up within 15 minutes against Hoboken FC as Lasse neatly finished a chance after his first shot was blocked by the keeper. The second followed quickly as George knicked the ball off a dawdling defender and coolly placed the ball into the bottom corner. Mike Ni got into the act next as a great cross from Shane was met with an imperious header by our captain on the day. And the first half saw us finish with 4 as Kwesi deftly flicked in a great Xavi cross at the near post. We continued in the same vein after the break, dominating possession and showing greater physicality all over the pitch. On 50 minutes, Kwesi turned his defender, and with the goal at his mercy was taken out from behind. The defender was justly given his marching orders. We dropped off briefly and conceded a poor goal, but against 10 men we continued to create chances and more goals came from Xavi (sadly, in his last appearance for us), Kwesi again, firing in from close range after a corner, and Eli who came on as a sub and powered through 2 defenders in the penalty area and expertly found the bottom corner. It was an emphatic victory, that leaves us level on points with Lansdowne at the top of the table, and with United FC following close behind as we complete our Fall season schedule.
Team: Dan M, Robbo, Nick, Shane, Mike Ne, Andy W, Mike Ni, Lasse, George, Xavi, Kwesi
Subs: Eli, Carlos, Dan R
On an overcast and rainy afternoon, the Reserves battled a stingy Hoboken F.C. squad and notched a 2-1 win to settle the Fall campaign with consecutive victories. The win moves the Reserves to third place in the table and a step closer to playoff contention with a 4-4-2 record.
The Reserves dominated the opening 30 minutes of the match and created numerous opportunities, particularly when attacking down the flank. Hoboken’s sparse chances were the result of self-inflicted CPR turnovers within the defensive third of the pitch. The Reserves finally broke through when a free kick was bobbled by Hoboken’s keeper which provoked a goal mouth scramble before the opportunistic Chris “Gerd Mueller” Norelli poked the ball into the net. Disappointingly, the Reserves failed to capitalize on the positive momentum and add to the scoresheet before the halftime whistle.
Dan “RZA” Riso entered in the second half and quickly showcased the quality which made him an integral part of the Reserves success the past two seasons. Solid distribution from our central midfield trio of Josh, Devin and Riso helped create chances but we lacked the urgency and precision necessary to put games out of reach. We finally added to the tally after Devin was played through and found himself one on one with the goalkeeper and after maneuvering around his outstretched arms finished into the side net. Two goals down, Hoboken threw additional players forward which caused the Reserves to lose defensive shape, exposed holes in the midfield and placed pressure on the back line. Fifteen minutes before stoppage time, Hoboken cut the deficit in half off an own goal courtesy of Brownie. Hoboken continued to press for the equalizer and placed the Reserves under steady pressure until the final whistle.
A big shoutout to our keeper for filling in for Jon! The match marked the end of the Andres Padilla era with CPR. After 5 seasons with the club, Dre is moving back to Miami. His deft touch, passion for football and leadership will be sorely missed. Best of luck on your future endeavors Dr. Dre.
Starters: Joakim (D), Mike (D), Pat (D), Brian (D), Chris (M), Archie (M), Devin (M), Josh (M), Dre (M), Norelli (S)
Subs: Moss (M), Riso (M)