Sunday, February 22, 2009

Eagles hold off Olympic for important victory


New Town Eagles desperately needed to win this Group B match in the Premier League section of the Summer Cup to erase memories of last weekend's 6-0 thrashing at the hands of South Hobart.

And win they did, despite being down to nine men with 7 minutes remaining.

Coach George Krambousanos had tried to restore morale at training during the week and he worked on his defence and on a game plan to counter Olympic.

It worked - but just.

Olympic threw everything at Eagles, but their own inadequacies were only too evident and they were left ruing a missed opportunity and occupying the bottom rung of the Group B ladder with one round remaining.

After surviving early pressure, Eagles took the lead in the 23rd minute through a penalty.

Adam McKeown rattled the Olympic crossbar and, when the ball rebounded to the edge of the box, Youssef Mohamad, making his first appearance this season for Olympic, brought down Alexander Leszczynski in a clash of legs and torsos.

Mohamad required treatment and was off the pitch as Leszczynski rifled home the spot-kick.

Adam Hedge narrowly missed an equaliser a minute later as he failed to get to a low cross from the left.

With the first half drawing to a close, Olympic's Daniejel Djekanovic squandered a good chance by shooting over the bar from the left of the box.

Two minutes after the resumption, Leszczynski almost made it 2-0 after a corner, but his header at the far post was cleared off the line by Chris Tsakiris.

Chris Tsakiris then appeared at the other end as Olympic counter-attacked, but he shot over the bar.

Eagles' Richard DeLara was cautioned shortly after, which was to prove significant later in the match.

In the 38th minute, a powerful drive by Peter Tsakiris almost ensettled Eagles' goalkeeper, Andrew Savage, but he kept his head and the ball without conceded a goal or a corner.

Midway through the half, Djekanovic found a way down the left, but his shot-cum-cross drifted wide of the far post.

It was at this point that DeLara again spoke out of turn and Mr Colhoun brandished a yellow card and then a red.

Within three minutes, Eagles' captain and sweeper, Chris Wass, saw yellow as he almost cut Akuel Guot in two with a tackle.

Things were becoming desperate and Hedge was shown a yellow card for a late tackle 9 minutes from the end.

Two minutes later, Wass was shown a second yellow for a handball and headed for the dressing room.

Olympic failed to use the width of the pitch against their nine opponents and played into the hands of a desparate Eagles team.

Mohamad blazed over the bar from range in a forlorn attempt at goal, while former Eagles player, Robert Lebski, had an effort blocked by Andrew Savage.

Olympic's final chance came in the last minute when Ben Whitehall fouled Michael Bulis on the goal-line on the left, just outside the box.

Chris Tsakiris floated the free-kick into the goalmouth, but Lebski glanced his header wide of the target.

The result put Eagles in third place on the Group B ladder and with a faint chance of qualifying for the final.

Olympic, whose coach, Farrell Shaw, was in Melbourne on business, are out of contention.

Watching from the sidelines was Eagles' State representative goalkeeper, Nathan Pitchford, who could be out for months after sustaining a knee injury in a pre-season friendly.

He is being treated by a specialist but the full extent of the injury is yet to be determined.


  • Olympic's stand-in coach, Glenn McNeil, said:

"It was disappointing that they had two sendings-off and we couldn't capitalise at the last, really.

"That was the disappointing thing.

"We couldn't really buy a goal today. That's the way it goes, isn't it?

"It's still early days, so we're happy."

  • New Town Eagles coach, George Krambousanos, said:

"We trained well and we actually brought to the park what we did at training.

"All the boys were switched on, much better than last week.

"The best part about it was that they are fit lads and that showed in the last five or ten minutes when we had two men off and only nine men on the park.

"I'm very, very happy, but sad with the two cards.

"A little bit of indiscipline there, I suppose, but we can't do much about it."

Hobart Olympic: Nester - P Tsakiris - Mohamad, Tsimiklis - Lebski, Banks, C Tsakiris, Richardson, Djekanovic - Bulis, Assenheimer [Substitutes: Kaproulias, A Hedge, Guot, Plomaritis].

Booked: A Hedge

New Town Eagles: A Savage - Wass - Clark, W Savage, Page - Kavanagh, Malakoff, DeLara, Collins - Leszczynski, McKeown [Substitutes: Pope, Rybak, Whitehall, Vernon]

Booked: DeLara, Wass

Sent-off: DeLara, Wass

Goals: Leszczynski 23 pen

Ref: I Colhoun

Att: 200


Anonymous said...

would be interesting to note how many subs were used. There's an issue with the "team stacking" rules for this comp where it appears a number of players are not getting a run at all on the weekend.

You can't blame this on the coaches but rather the rules. If a player does not take the filed for the seniors on the Saturday why shouldn't they be allowed to play for the reserve team on the Sunday?

If it comes down to finals then sosmething different can be applied to ensure a senior team not making the finals does not drop players down.


Anonymous said...

I agree with you, Anon888. I am not even bothering to note substitutions, which I do in league matches, because the Summer Cup is run on an interchange basis and it's pointless to note the changes because players come off and then go on again and it gets a bit messy.

orlando said...

very good player wassy. loves to try an snap people in half

Anonymous said...

Thought he was unlucky to get sent off. second yellow was harsh as handball looked accidental. First one was definitely good value though, no doubt at all about a card. All part of the game for a central defender I guess.

Anonymous said...

What is Farrell Shaw's business?
He seems to miss quite a few games.
Guot start on the bench? He looked a real handful against Zebras, maybe he was being saved from the couple big bad Eagle defenders.
Anyone think Olympic can push for the title again like the last two years?

Anonymous said...

Guot only got there at half time , that wuld be why..

Anonymous said...

How long before Guot is back in Div 1 with Hobart United. By the end of the season I predict.