It has been an interesting season so far for the Legends. Bolstered by recruits both internally & externally, the Legends are still feeling their oats and are yet to put together a coherent half, let alone a good game. Having said that, winning ugly is still winning and this is what CPR has managed so far for the first 5 games (including the first game forfeit). With the worst 5-1 win in history behind them last week, the Legends were going to have to up their game considerably against a typically hard working Shamrock team.
Although CPR had a smaller contingent than usual, it was still a healthy 15 who were showing up as opposed to the 12 for the Shamrocks. On one of the biggest fields that they will play on, the Legends were going to need every one of these substitutes. As expected given the field size, most of the action was taking place in the middle. An early foray down the right led to the game’s first goal as Pete Hahn rampaged down the right before finding Casanova in the box. Smartly taking his time, Casanova passed the ball to Solinas who sweetly struck his one touch shot right into the side netting. Unfortunately from then on there was not much to speak off regarding action. Duckie for the Shamrocks went off injured which resulted in the opposition having to play the enormous field with no substitutes, already missing their top 3 strikers. Unfortunately the Legends were having difficulty stringing too many passes together and were unable to take advantage. With no pace up top, through balls on the long field were out but there was also difficulty advancing the ball down the wings.
The second half saw the Shamrocks valiantly chasing the equalizer, spurning several decent opportunities with Telly Vamvouris stopping the rest. Meanwhile the Legends were barely making any headway at the other end, with an xG map that was surely as ugly as any (best guess would be 0.4). The one part of the Legends that has been strong all season has been the defence, especially Telly in goal & the rotating centerbacks of Roberts, Roberts & Belizan. They managed to do just enough to bail out the sputtering offence on what should have been a more comfortable win against a side with no substitutes on a big field.
Complaints are over as of the next two weeks, as first the Legends play Cozmos in the State Cup followed by Cozmos again in the league. This team has been laying waste with 30 goals scored and only 5 conceded, so we will see if the Legends penchant for playing to the level of the opposition results in the quality being raised a notch.
Competition: Shamrock SC Legends, League Opposition
Location: Randall’s Island #10, Randall’s Island
Conditions: Lovely morning, perfect for football
Goals: 1-0: Solinas Assist Casanova
Yellow Cards: Nizam with a magnificently executed professional foul, running neck & neck with a Shamrock player for half the length of the field
Red Cards: None
Mike D’s aka No Shows: None
Conboy’s aka Reverse Mike D’s: None, although evite response is still very spotty
”Mr. Glass” Fragility/Old Man Injury Award: Pete Hahn & Jan Carlson with muscular injuries, the long pitch not helping
Old Man of the Match: With only a couple of brief appearances at the bar, not enough quorum to vote. Again.
Old Man of the Bar: Two Tier 1s had another stellar session at the bar, seeing off several teams (Venkataraman, Faherty).
El Presidente (new award for Old Men who don’t make it to game but come to the bar): None
Statistic of the week: None to speak of
Team Bar Showing: 5 out of 16 (31%)
Team Bar Night: 3 out of 5. Only 5 at the bar, but the Tier 1s longevity bumped this up slightly above average. Good showing by the Reds (Coffee boy) as well as Old Boyz/Grays.
Team (No new profiles this week): Telly Vamvouris (GK), Ollie Roberts (DF), Luciano Belizan (DF), Pete Hahn (DF), Steve Roberts (DF), Drew Faherty (DF), Eduardo Mazzi (DF), Jan Carlson (DF), John Hodges, Simon Mckeown, Tony Vamvouris, Ugo Solinas, Tom Pattinson, Manohar Venkataraman, Manuel Casanova, Hakan Nizam