Roster juggling is an annoying weekly past time, but this week the flipside of begging for players came into view. Recruiting a couple of Old Boyz combined with a couple of unexpected players resulted in 17 available, the most players the Legends have had for a game in quite a while. Winning the toss and taking the wind in their favour they put the Kickers immediately on their heels but despite gaining good possession in the final third they were unable to put together any significant attacks on goal. After the initial onslaught the Kickers started to show why they were the class of the opposite division with a couple of dangerous strikers putting the Legends on their heels. CPR persevered with their 4-2-3-1, but the formation only worked intermittently as some of the attacking midfielders drifted far too deep. The defensive midfielders provided good cover but despite having enough numbers back the opposition striker was given far too much room at the top of the box to stroke the ball well into the side netting. Kickers confidence visibly rose and they had a few more opportunities while the Legends struggled to maintain any type of possession. Their equalizer came out of the blew, Bradley leaving the confines of his position to charge across the middle as a huge blunder at the back between a defender and goalkeeper allowed Bradley to sneak in and finish the ball into an empty net.
Half time came and the complexion of the game completely changed. Apparently the Kickers summoned the wind as a substitute because it picked up markedly. Most of the second half was played in the final third of the Legends as they were unable to clear the ball. The few times they were able to clear the ball up, the strikers were unable to get to the ball or make it stick and back it came. Indeed, the surprise of the Kickers goal was why it took so long, a deep corner resulting in a straightforward header. The Legends defence still manfully fought a rearguard action to keep them in the game, and at the tail end they indeed had a few chances. Harrison was taken down in what looked a clear penalty that was shrugged off by the referee, and Subah had sobered up enough to brush through various attackers before inexplicably not taking a great chance at a shot inside the area.
In the end the Legends acquitted themselves well against a very good team, but a draw would have been nice.
Competition: Manhattan Kickers, League Opposition
Location: Randall’s Island #90, Randall’s Island
Conditions: Very windy Fall afternoon
Result: 1:2 HT: 1-1
Goals: 1-1: Bradley
Yellow Cards: Harrison putting a boot in to the whiny curly headed defender earned him a booking.
Red Cards: None
Mike D’s aka No Shows: Once again, Santiago no showed with an accidental comment on the evite simply not good enough.
Conboy’s aka Reverse Mike D’s: Ironically for a game where the Legends had plenty of players, two more unexpectedly showed up to bolster the lineup while also providing a substitution tightrope. Rosenbloom and Steve Roberts.
”Mr. Glass” Fragility/Old Man Injury Award: Hopefully Belizan’s groin improves over the next 3 weeks.
Old Man of the Match: Several good performances but several outstanding saves by Miller kept the Legends with a chance the entire game. Surprisingly its only his first OMoM, but with performances like this there are many more sure to follow. Honorable mention goes to Bradley, his trademark energy resulting in his debut goal for the club.
Old Man of the Bar: N/A
El Presidente (Old Men who don’t make it to game but come to the bar): None.
Statistic of the week: Bradley with his debut goal and Miller with his first OMoM.
Team Bar Showing: 4 out of 17 (24%)
Team Bar Night: 2.5 out of 5. A couple of the Old Boys who were joining ended up fading away. The 4 Legends who did show up stuck around for a decent amount of time, but nothing major.
Team (No new profiles this week): Mitch Miller (GK), Mark Resnik (DF), Luciano Belizan (DF), Willian D’Andrea, Steven Teesdale (DF), Steve Roberts (DF), Oli Roberts (DF), Mark Edmunds (DF), Bevan Rosenbloom, Simon Harrison (DF), Charles Bradley, Neil Stower, Manohar Venkataraman, Ernest Subah, Simon Mckeown, Franco Denari, Mark Dean (DF)