Monday, August 24, 2009

Clarence United win first silverware in 31 years







Photos (Top to Bottom): Clarence United cup final squad; Northern Rangers cup final squad; Officials (L-R) Jason Priest, Kim Barker, Craig Phillips and Hanna Manuela; Clarence with the trophy; Andy Barron carries the trophy with his team-mates after the match; Clarence supporters cheer their team from the stand after the match


Clarence United 2-0 Northern Rangers [Milan Lakoseljac Memorial Trophy Final]

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Clarence United were clearly the better side and deserved to win the Milan Lakoseljac Memorial Trophy, the club’s first silverware at senior level in 31 years.


Northern Rangers were impressive at times, but they lacked penetration up front and their back-four were vulnerable to the quick Clarence counter-attacks.


Clarence used width well and the speed of Chris Hunt, in particular, was devastating.


Paul Bremner, a former Clarence player, showed some extraordinary skills - he juggled the ball over and past a couple of opponents in midfield with almost nonchalant ease at one point - and Thataetsile Kakadumane was also a force in the middle of the park.


Bremner later changed places with Kakadumane, but Rangers still failed to launch many dangerous raids against a superb Clarence back-four protected by a robust, skilful and fast midfield quartet.


Clarence got off to the perfect start when they scored from a free-kick in the 3rd minute.


Sam McIntyre fired the free-kick on target, but the ball took a deflection off a defender and, despite Marshall Pooley diving full-length and getting his hands to the ball, it rocketed into the net.


In the 7th minute, Derek Schipper went on an amazing slalom run past four Clarence players and into the box, but just as he was about to score, he stood on the ball and fell over.


Clarence then hit back and Luke Cripps forced a corner in the 11th minute with a low drive that Pooley did well to turn wide.


Midway through the half, Luke Huigsloot headed Mattias Toghill’s cross from the right straight at Pooley when he probably should have scored.


In the 41st minute, Pooley again showed his class when, after a corner by Hunt, he raced off his line and blocked a shot at McIntyre’s feet.


Ben Parker was booked in the 58th minute for a foul on Luke Connors as the Rangers striker threatened to break through on the right of the box.


Rangers amazingly survived in the 64th minute when Hunt stole the ball from Sam Luck and set up McIntyre with a chance, but Pooley was off his line in a flash and again saved at McIntyre’s feet.


Two minutes later, Rangers were less fortunate as they fell further behind.


The move started when McIntyre picked out Hunt with a long diagonal pass from right to left.


Hunt beat Brad Langerak on the left and took the ball to the byline before playing it across the face of goal to Ben Hamlett.


Pooley parried Hamlett’s shot wide, where Cripps’s shot was again blocked, but Luke Huigsloot rammed it home to make it 2-0.


Rangers still had life in them, however, and Moschogianis pulled off a fine save from Sam Nugteren in the 78th minute.


A minute later, Matt Lewis cleared Bremner’s header off the line as the northerners desperately sought a goal to put them back in the game.


Nine minutes from the end, a great run down the left by Hunt saw him cross to McIntyre, who shot over the bar while under pressure from Pooley, who had come off his line.


In the 82nd minute, Hamlett was presented with a chance but placed his shot straight at Pooley.


Substitute Andy Barron almost added a third for Clarence in the 88th minute when Luck’s error gave possession to Cripps and he crossed to the youngster, but the ball rolled agonisingly wide of the post.


Pooley made certain of the man-of-the-match accolade when, a minute into stoppage time, he denied Cripps in a one-on-one situation.


The sides meets again next weekend in the intrastate final-four series at Birch Avenue in Launceston, but Rangers will need to do much better than they did in this game to have any chance of victory.


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· Clarence United coach, Andrew Brown, said:


“Absolutely magnificent.


“It appeared to be a good game, with lots of chances, opportunities, and actually some sublime skill at times.


“From my experience in playing in finals football, you have to be able to put the ball in the back of the net when it counts.


“I was a bit worried that we wouldn’t do that. We should have killed them off earlier.


“When they’re a good side like Northern Rangers, we had to be at our best.


“Today, we were.


“In my opinion, the game plan, the tactics, absolutely perfect. The players executed it to the letter.


“I have no complaints from my players and I told them if they did we would have silverware for the first time in 31 years.


“I’m so happy for the players and for the football club to win two out of three finals on offer.


“It’s a fantastic achievement.


“We hope we can regroup by next week. I’m not so sure how well we’ll regroup because we will celebrate long and hard, but we’ll enjoy today and worry about next week next week.”


· Northern Rangers coach, Roslan Sa’ad, said:


“The better team won.


“Their boys were just hungrier than us. Basically, that’s it.


“We’ll see how we go next week.”


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Clarence United: Moschogianis - Toghill, Lewis, Parker, McMahon - S McIntyre, Stevens (Phillips 83), L Huigsloot, Hunt - Hamlett (Barron 85), Cripps (Substitutes not used: Hoppitt, Sweetten)


Booked: Parker 58


Goals: own-goal 3, L Huigsloot 66


Northern Rangers: M Pooley - Langerak (Tuma 77), Nugteren, Luck, Gaskin - Nicholson, Schipper, Kakadumane (Tams 77), Ambrose (Townsend 55) - Bremner, Connors (Substitutes not used: R Pooley, Jago, Lichtendonk)


Booked: Connors 77


Att: 600 (KGV Park, Saturday, 22 August 2009)


Ref: K Barker

1 comment:

Northern Suburbs said...

I thoght Clarence won Div 1 in 1998, thus getting promoted to Premier League?