Match corresponding to the 9th Round of the Gibraltarian Premier Division and played at the Victoria Stadium at 17:00 on Saturday 28th November 2015.
Gibraltar United Football Club 1 – 0 Manchester 62 Football Club
Gibraltar United Football Club
1 Kyle ‘Chino’ Goldwin
11 Jared Buhagiar
19 Brad Power
30 David Gallardo
88 Carl Thomas
10 Andrew Lopez (C)
99 Jamie Bosio
33 Alan Parker
18 Byron Espinosa
90 Jamie Currer
8 Robert Montovio
‘Pitu’ Anes on for Alan Parker
Sean Gilbert on for Jamie Currer
Kaylan Rumbo on for Robert Montovio
Manolo Nuñez showed faith in the core and the system that delivered the first 3 points of the season last Monday in today’s match against Manchester 62. The only change was Jamie Bosio coming in for Duane Robba. It was as we were as United sought to capitalise on riding a wave of an upsurge in morale. Manchester 62 had reinforced well over the summer with the likes of Brian Perez and Liam Clarke coming in from Lincoln FC. Their star signing however was Argentine forward, Christian Toncheff who had signed from Europa FC in the off season. It was very gratifying to see so many local players gracing the pitch today, a rarer and rare sight in the Premier Division these days.
United showed their hunger from the kick off and did not show their opponents any indication that they were over awed at playing them. Alan Parker was quick to move between lines and their was an instant will to connect with Montovio and Espinosa around him. Likewise Jamie Currer was quick to exploit any opportunity to employ his blistering pace against the Manchester full back. Yet for all the promise the match often degenerated into turgid possessions with little to show for it. Man 62 decided to slow down the play, a somewhat surprising move considering the quality Toncheff posesses; the fact he was deployed in a wide position compounded this. Some of United’s players on the other hand did not suffer such lethargy. Jamie Bosio in particular.
Playing against his former team, ‘Boss’, was motivated and eager to move the team forward. He tracked back selfishly and was quick to move the ball to the forward players. He was also not averse to supporting attacking moves. Perhaps, due to the added motivation, we have seen Jamie’s best performance in a United shirt today. That said the first half proved to be somewhat of a damp squib. Referee, Glen Gilbert, was at times too quick to his whistle thus not allowing either team to develop any free flowing moves. As the half time whistle went Gib Utd were by far happier with the result and the signs were there that Man 62 could be attacked.
Nuñez mad a somewhat surprising substitution at half time with ‘Pitu’ Anes replacing Alan Parker; surprising as Parker had often been United’s brightest spark in the first half. Yet the sub seemed to be a catalyst for some of United’s brightest play in the match. There is no denying ‘Pitu’s’ quality and it immediately began to tell. Settling next to Jamie in center mid, he allowed Andrew to advance his position to support Robert more up front. ‘Pitu’ began to regale us all with his range of passing. Short, clever balls intermingled with longer range passes, all finding a red and white shirt. One of those passes was picked up by an onrushing Jamie Bosio bursting from midfield. He beat the offside trap and put himself on a one on one with the Man 62 keeper, former Gib Utd man Kaaron Macedo. Macedo pulled off a stunning save to prevent Jamie from scoring a goal against his former team. The clearest chance of the game so far and Man 62 looked rattled.
A few minutes later ‘Pitu’ would earn himself a glorious assist. A foul to the left of the Man 62 area saw the former Lincoln man deliver a pin point, peach of cross to the far post. Red and White shirts overwhelmed the Man 62 defence and it was that man’s Montovio’s head that made solid contact with the ball pushing it past Macedo. A well deserved lead as United had created the most in the second half. The celebrations were understandably wild as United took the lead for the first time in a Premier match this season. If Monday had all been about fighting back this would mean a test of composure as surely Man 62 would need to react.
React they did as the lethargy dropped from their play. The pace increased and the pressure put on the United goal increased. Yet credit must go to Gallardo and Power once again. They can no longer be called make shift center halves after today’s game. They are learning to play well with each other and have demonstrated that clever footballers can adapt to any position. They formed the bulwark that attack after Man 62 attack broke on. A shining inspiration to their team mates and no doubt the dawn of a great defensive partnership has arrived. Yet for all their pressure Man 62 did not force Chino into any action of note, a welcome break for the normally busy keeper.
Mr Gilbert brought proceedings to a close after 5 minutes of added time and United’s players gratefully received the plaudits given to them by the crowd at the Victoria Stadium. This was a decent scalp to take and it has shown the progress the squad is making. We are now tied with Man 62 with 7 points but with two games in hand. The first of these is being played on Wednesday against high flying Lions FC.