Friday, April 17, 2009

Metro may just inch ahead at the top of Division One

Photos (Top to Bottom): Metro goalkeeper Michael McKenna; Metro's Scottish import Colin Sweeney...suspended for second time this year; Nelson's Craig Stockdale is still injured; Taroona's spokesman Ben Horgan.

Taroona and Metro should continue their neck-and-neck race at the top of the southern Division One ladder this weekend.

Taroona are away to fourth-placed Nelson Eastern Suburbs at North Warrane on Sunday, while Metro visit Sherburd Park at Blackmans Bay on Saturday to face fifth-ranked Christian United.

“We only just held on for a draw against Nelson in the Summer Cup, so I expect this will be a tough game,” said Taroona’s Ben Horgan.

“We were very poor against Metro in the State-wide Cup on Monday and I was really disappointed that so many of our players were so flat for such an important game.

“The defending was horrendous, despite all the focus we put on that before the game, so obviously that needs more work, and although we were better in the second half we really didn’t create enough chances for the amount of possession we had.

“The only real positive was the performance of Will Darling, who made the jump from Under-19s to come off the bench for only his second senior appearance and showed a lot more composure than many of his more experienced team mates.

“He is a young centre-back with massive potential and, if he trains well this week, he’ll be in contention for his first senior start.

“Duncan Carey and Mark Gates were also good after coming off the bench,.

“While I probably won’t make major changes this week, there are a few players who need to show they can cut it in the big games and not just turn it on against the weaker sides because I have guys ready to take their places.

“Cian Carey missed the Cup game but is fit to return at centre-back in place of Stefano Flonta.

“Jon Burridge will hold on to his place in goal, but he knows he needs to play well consistently if he is going to keep Rob Hortle out of the side.”

Nelson will be without the injured Craig Stockdale and Adam Mills, while striker Tom Gordon must pass a fitness test. Rowan Sakul replaces Paul Gazzignato.

“Some injuries and the unavailability of key players is affecting us at present, but we expect a better performance than we put up on Easter Monday in the cup match versus Hobart United,” said Nelson coach, Michael Roach.

“Credit to Hobart for a determined performance, but if we are going to play like that again we might as well just send the competition points to Taroona by mail as there’ll be no point in turning up.

“On a positive note, I don't think we can get any worse and Tom Gordon and Rowan Sakul should add a few IQ points to the squad.

“If you’d asked me a few weeks ago if we could beat Taroona, I’d have said yes.

“Now I'm waiting to see if we turn up to play, or if the same bunch of chimps wearing Nelson shirts who fronted up last Monday intend turning up this week as well.

“It’ll be interesting at least and I’m off to the costume shop to get a gorilla suit just in case. I wouldn’t want to be left out!”

Metro will have goalkeeper Michael McKenna back from Spain, where he represented Australia in a futsal tournament, and he will replace the suspended Simon Land.

Kye McQueen will come in to the side in place of Colin Sweeney, who was sent off for the second time last week.

“The intensity shown against Taroona on Monday in the State-wide cup was a step up from previous weeks and, even with nine players to finish off with, the guys gave very little away,” said Metro coach, Darrin Chaffey.

“If we take this attitude into the game against Christian United, I’m confident we can get the desired result.”

Christian United has brought back Andrew Pilgrim, David Nettlefold and Chris Mrzyk, while Matthew Sly and Leno Taglieri are out from the team that lost to University 7-3 on Monday.

Coach Tony New said this week’s opponent’s, Metro, had been scoring freely and his team would need to stem the tide.

Northern Suburbs DOSA entertains Hobart United in a bottom-of-the-table clash at the Showgrounds today [Saturday].

Hobart United will have a new young goalkeeper in Alex Dand because of the suspension of Nathan Grandin.

DOSA is second-last, just a point ahead of last-placed Hobart United, so this should be a close game.

United beat Nelson 1-0 in an amazing cup upset last Monday, so its morale will have been improved considerably after a bleak start to the league campaign.

“We must demonstrate the same hunger and passion for the game that we displayed against Nelson in the cup on Monday if we want to win this one,” said United’s Adrian Pickin.


Marty Nidorfer said...

Fantastic preview Walter, my favourite side Nelson looks in trouble, I can only offer their coach our clown suits rather than monkey ones, good to see the banter still alive and kicking.

Michael Roach, I can lend you a clown suit for the weekend, but it has two right shoes and a ticket to the end of season FFT bash at the Beachside table.

Bana said...

You should put that Beachside table ticket on Ebay! It would be worth a packet!

Michael roach said...

Thanks Marty but the conversation at the beachside table would be a bit too intellectual for me, and in my case a clown disguise is not necessary. Pity we can't read your in depth analysis of the Eagles each week, hopefully a return from you as a columnist at some point. Ill try to keep the spirit alive in the interim.