Month: January 2015

Gibraltar United Football Club vs College Pegasus Football Club

Match corresponding to the 12th Round of the Gibraltarian Second Division. Played on Sunday 25th January 2015 at 20:00 at the Victoria Stadium

Gibraltar United Football Club 2 – 0 College Pegasus Football Club

J.Buhagiar
Muscat (P)

Gibraltar United Football Club

1  Kyle ‘Chino’ Goldwin
11 Jared Buhagiar
3  Lee Buhagiar
2  Aaron Collado
88 Carl Thomas
89 Aden Victor
8  Dylan Mañasco
23 Stefan Cumbo
7  Justin Collado
10 Andrew Lopez (C)
99 Shane Howe

SUBSTITUTES

Evan Coleing on for Stefan Cumbo
Lee Muscat on for Shane Howe
Mark Casciaro on for Jared Buhagiar

United's XI for the match with Lee Buhagiar making his debut for the club.

United’s XI for the match with Lee Buhagiar making his debut for the club.

Late Sunday kick off for United this week that saw them come up against College Pegasus. Pegasus started the league strongly but have waned as the league has progressed. United come into the match on the back of two 1-0 wins and looking for some form. Justin Collado and Andrew Lopez came back into the starting XI with the latter regaining the arm band from stand in skipper Aaron Collado. Lee Buhagiar, recently signed as a free agent but very well known in local FUTSAL circles playing for St Joesph’s, made his début in the league (Lee had already had a game for the Reserves) replacing Shane Crisp who suffered an injury in training earlier in the week. Lee Muscat continues his return from injury with a place on the bench along with two new transfers made during the January window. Evan Coleing from the Red Imps and Mark Casciaro a well know and long serving player for Lincoln FC with whom he has won everything in the local game.

Teams prepare to kick the second half on

Teams prepare to kick the second half off

Circumstances prevented your usual reporter from attending the match but fellow officials and Twitter made good substitutes (thanks 5 Point 4). United dominated the game but as in recent fixtures found it hard to make the decisive breakthrough early on. Though United dominated possession clear cut chances were few and far between. With the score line at 0-0 at half time Muscat came off the bench at the start of the second half along with Evan Coleing, the latter making his debut. Jared Buhagiar, however, broke the deadlock with a tap in after some good play from Muscat. Lee also provoked a penalty which Andrew Lopez took but the Pegasus keeper saved. Mark Casciaro also made his début as he came on for about 20 minutes or so for an injured Jared Buhagiar. Pegasus were playing the last minutes of the match with 9 men after two of their players had seen two yellows apiece. A second penalty was tucked away by Lee Muscat to give United another priceless 3 points allowing us to maintain the 5 point gap with Angels in second place.

We now enter a sequence of matches that are going to define the season. Next up it is Lincoln FC in the Rock Cup Second Round on the 2nd February. In a weekend of cup shocks in the FA Cup in England, we can find inspiration in the magic of cup competitions in this quintessential David and Goliath match. In the league we then face Olympique 13 then the triumvirate of Scorpions, Europa Point and Angels.

Next game up however is Glacis Reserves on Tuesday.

FC Hound Dogs vs Gibraltar United Football Club

Match corresponding to the 11th Round of the Gibraltarian Second Division. Played on Tuesday 20th January 2015 at the Victoria Stadium at 18:15

Gibraltar United Football Club 1 – 0 FC Hound Dogs

Cumbo

Gibraltar United Football Club

1  Kyle ‘Chino’ Goldwin
88 Carl Thomas
5  Shane Crisp
2  Aaron Collado (C)
11 Jared Buhagiar
16 Steven Gilbert
21 Dylan Mañasco
77 Kaylan Rumbo
89 Aden Victor
23 Stefan Cumbo
99 Shane Howe

SUBSTITUTIONS

Justin Collado on for Steven Gilbert
Lee Muscat on for Shane Howe
Andrew Lopez on for Kaylan Rumbo

20-01-2015 21-08-17

United’s starting XI

Cold, rain, wind. January in three words. A wet day in Gibraltar today that was perforated by a biting Northerly wind that brought icy chills with it. An icy chill that seemed to have permeated through the Gib Utd squad today as we toiled to a 1-0 victory over a gritty FC Hound Dogs team joint bottom of the league. Aldorino had stuck with the 4-4-2 from the previous game and also recovered some key players. Kaylan Rumbo got a starting berth in place of the missing Willy Gracia but it was the heavy artillery on the bench that caught everyone’s attention. Justin Collado and Andrew Lopez were back from representing Gibraltar at the FUTSAL Euro Qualifiers in Bulgaria. They did both the club and out nation pride with Justin even nabbing a goal. Well done to both and an honour for the club to have you in our ranks. The other outstanding name on the bench was of course Lee Muscat. Back after an long, injury enforced absence it warmed all our supporters up on this very cold of days to see him on the bench. Aaron Collado retained the arm band despite Andrew’s presence on the sub’s bench.

United started very, very lethargic. To the Hound Dog’s credit they were much quicker off the blocks and it took us a good five minutes to actually play in our opponents half. Our passing was nervy and our movement stiff and predictable. To coin a tennis term a lot of ‘unforced errors’ were committed by our players. The cold had certainly seemed to have more of an effect on us than on the Hound Dogs. Yet once we got control of the ball and played our football we threatened to create. Cumbo looked spritely as usual using the ball cleverly but the Hound Dogs defence was well marshalled and kept its discipline closing down our forward players quickly and denying our wingers much space in which to work in. Likewise the careless play demonstrated by United meant that the ball zipped aimlessly across the greasy surface. The one time Kaylan and Stefan combined a number of passes together Kaylan was an inch away from tucking away Stefan’s rasping cross.

Cumbo puts in a cross in a rare moment of danger in the first half

Cumbo puts in a cross in a rare moment of danger in the first half.

Both keepers however were tested with both Chino and the Hound Dogs keeper showing quick reflexes to dive low and fast to deny shots that were seeking the bottom corners of the net. As ref, Luque Gonzalez brought the first half to a close supporters were wondering if either the temperature or the match were going to warm up. Any expectations as to the latter were quickly dashed as the second half continued where the first left off. Sloppy passing and uncoordinated movements in attack gave the Hound Dogs defence plenty of opportunity to frustrate our players. Yet it only takes one moment and United thought they had taken that moment only for Jason Costa to clear off the line. Aldorino was quick to react and Justin Collado was qucikly sent on in place of Gilbert. The forward line received and injection of pace and urgency. Lopez and Muscat followed soon after. Our four top scorers were now on the pitch and the expectancy in the crowd rose.

Cumbo rolls the ball to J.Collado during a free kick routine.

Cumbo rolls the ball to J.Collado during a free kick routine.

Yet the spark was never really lit. Lee is far from his best form, understandable due to his injury and Andrew and Justin may be feeling the effects of their FUTSAL exploits. However chances were created. With the score at one nil, Lee produced a trademark shuffling run that allowed him to muscle his way through the defence. As the defenders fell at his wake he deftly tapped a shot beating the diving keeper only to have the  ball tap the bottom of the post. Likewise Aden Victor, from a Muscat pass, let fly a shot that must have shaved splinters off the post, it came that close! By then we had scored our goal courtesy of Stefan Cumbo ably assisted by an almighty fumble by Carcaño in the Hound Dogs goal. Stefan shot from distance and it appeared a bread and butter take for the keeper. Yet, inexplicably (though a greasy ball and surface must take a fair share of the blame) he let the ball run through his fingers and spill over the line. Not the classiest of Stefan’s many goals this season but certainly the most important one.

The goal scorer celebrates!

The goal scorer celebrates!

All in all a match with little to remember but an essential and vital 3 points to maintain the 5 point gap between a rampant Angels FC that have overthrown Europa Point in second place. FC Hound Dogs are deserving of a better league place on this showing. Minds now turn to our next match on Sunday against College Pegasus.

Gibraltar United Football Club vs Leo Football Club

Match corresponding to the 1st Round of the Gibraltar FA Rock Cup. Played on Sunday 11th January 2015 at 16:00 in the Victoria Stadium.

Gibraltar United Football Club 1 – 0 Leo Football Club

Howe

Gibraltar United Football Club

1    Kyle ‘Chino’ Goldwin
11  Jared Buhagiar
2   Aaron Collado (C)
5    Shane Crisp
88 Carl Thomas
89 Aden Victor
21 Dylan Mañasco
6   William Gracia
16 Steven Gilbert
23 Stefan Cumbo
99 Shane Howe

SUBSTITUTES

Brad Power on for Stefan Cumbo
Kaylan Rumbo on for William Gracia
David Gallardo on for Steven Gilbert

Football is back after the enforced break for the Christmas Holidays. Happy New Year to all our fans and readers by the way. The team got its first taste of action in 2015 in the Rock Cup. The senior of the cup competitions and the prize of Europa League football for the eventual winner. A number of changes for this first match of 2015. First of all players now have their shirts with their chosen squad numbers as per the rules set out by the GFA. Secondly there are some notable absentees from the line up. Lee Muscat is finalising his recovery from injury while Captain Andrew Lopez and winger Justin Collado are in Bulgaria representing Gibraltar FUTSAL in the Euro Qualifiers. ‘Chino’ Goldwin would have also been on the plane but for the impending arrival of a baby daughter (Congrats there Chino!) As such Aaron Collado takes on the armband while the scoring load would fall on Shane Howe’s shoulders. Shane Crisp makes his return from injury to take his place at the center of defence.

United's first XI of 2015

United’s first XI of 2015

The weather was unseasonably warm as the match kicked off bang on 4pm. Leo FC started with a defence in deep and two solid ranks of four across the defence and midfield. They clearly wanted to deny our creative players space and hassle our midfield into making mistakes. That said United dominated the early possession and carried the most danger. Charles Santos in the Leo goal made the first of his many saves diving low and fast to his right blocking a Dylan Mañasco rasping shot that was creeping into the net. Soon after United were denied a goal by an offside desicion, the first of 5 this afternoon in a match that saw some dodgy refereeing decisions being made. Leo carried little threat but were intent on trying to balance that lack of technique by imposing a very physical and hard game on Gibraltar United. This accounted for a game the lacked fluidity due to the large number of fouls being committed in the center of the park.

Carl Thomas takes a free kick after one of the many fouls in the first half.

Carl Thomas takes a free kick after one of the many fouls in the first half.

Leo however did have their chances. In a rare break forward a powerful shot flew wide of our post while an accurately placed shot from outside the area was deftly put over the bar by Chino. As the referee brought the first half to a close both teams trudged off in a very tense manner. The game was still at 0-0 and United had had three goals struck off for offside. Players looked nervous and somewhat rusty after the Christmas break.

Leo took to the field quicker that United, manager Aldorino no doubt expressing his displeasure to his players during the break. The second half however followed the same pattern as the first but only this time the Leo players notched up their physicality and the referee, Luque Gonzalez, was at risk of losing control of both the match and the players. Rafael Moreno in particular was at the apex of most of the trouble. United’s players, however, took the bait and both Gracia and Mañasco saw yellow cards for midfield tussles with the Leo players. That said the referee did not see it fit to send off a Leo player who squared up against Dylan with his head. A somewhat liberal interpretation of the rules if one may say!

Stand in Captain Aaron Collado in action.

Stand in Captain Aaron Collado in action.

United were denied twice more by a trigger happy linesman and by some very good keeping by Santos. We were dominating but not finding the crucial breakthrough. Cumbo and Gracia made way for Power and Rumbo. Aldorino, in view of Leo’s lack of bite up field advanced his lines and United were starting to make some headway. Aden Victor, victim of some rough handling by the Leo defenders, began to see more of the ball and began to stretch the Leo right back. Yet it was Chino Goldwin who was to be protagonist of the most unsavoury moment of the match. He bravely covered a long ball being chased by the Leo forward Youssef Louah. There was a coming together and the Leo player appeared to headbutt the keeper in his midriff. Cue a lot of pushing and shoving a yellow being given to the Leo player, surely if the referee thought it was aggression then the colour should have been a different one!

David Gallardo came on with 15 minutes to go and his presence proved to be a match changing moment. with 5 minutes remaining on the clock he went on a mazy run down the left wing. using his pace and long gait he was able to manufacture a peach of a cross that fell ever so kindly to Shane Howe in the middle of the area. Shane had already had two goals disallowed for offside but this time there was no flag or heroics from Santos to stop Howe from netting our eventual winner. The relief was palpable and Leo’s shoulders were seen to visibly droop. Penalties had been so close but in all honesty United dominated both play and possession for the 90 minutes despite the pressure Leo had put on at times. United’s name in the pot for Round 2, will we get a Premier League team? The draw is this coming Wednesday so stay tuned to our social media sites for news on who we face next.

Shane peels away in celebration as the ball flies into the net.

Shane peels away in celebration as the ball flies into the net.

Our next match sees the Reserves in action versus St Joseph’s Reserves on Thursday while United are back in league action on Tuesday 20th January against Hound Dogs FC