Match corresponding to the 19th Round of the Gibraltarian Premier Division and played on Sunday 28th February 2016 at 16:30.
Gibraltar United Football Club 2 – 0 FC Britannia XI
Gibraltar United Football Club
1 Kyle ‘Chino’ Goldwin
11 Jared Buhagiar
19 Brad Power
77 Kaylan Rumbo
3 Ashely Perez
88 Carl Thomas
21 Duane Robba
10 Andrew Lopez (C)
6 Dexter Panzavechia
7 Evan Green
8 Robert Montovio
Sean Gilbert on for Evan Green
‘Pitu’ Anes on for Andrew Lopez
United come into this game off an unfair 1-0 loss to Man 62 last weekend. Furthermore, Glacis United beat Man 62 3-1 in yesterday’s rounds of matches which means that though we are tied on points they are sitting snugly in 8th due to goal difference. Today’s match is a must win if we are to go 3 points ahead of Glacis again. Britannia started the league strongly but have tailed away recently. Hopefully this works in our favour today. Jaydan Catania drops from the team due to injury which means Ashley Perez takes a berth in the staring XI. Pitu also drops to the bench with Evan Green coming back into the team. A must win game as the third and last round of the league starts.
United’s players seemed hungry from off. Glacis’ performance yesterday seemed the catalyst they needed to spurn them off. Straight from kick off the Red and White looked eager to get the game going. Jared and Ashley worked the left wing well while Paco and Evan carried on where theyleft off against Man 62. Britannia, for their part looked a shadow of the team that beat us comfortably 3-1 in Round 2 and the negative spiral of results they find themselves in suggests they haven’t recovered from the loss of their Brazilian contingent on and off the pitch.
Indeed it was Jared Buhagiar that set the game alight 7 minutes in. In a charging run reminiscent of last season he tore up Britannia’s right wing. Pace and power personified, he bore down on the Blue goal as Barnfather came out to meet him. With great elegance he lofted the ball over the keeper and despite the height of the ball, watched as it bounced once over the line and hit the net. The relief was palpable as his team mates gathered around him to celebrate. A just reward for the efforts of a professional and committed player. Britannia looked shell shocked and United had the wind in their sails.
United were asserting themselves in Britannia’s half with only the occaisonal long balls that were handled brilliantly by Brad and Kaylan. The former already established as a centre half the latter another of Manolo’s experiments coming good. At the other end Robert was able to dribble a ball through to the bye line and feed Evan Green a peach of a cross. He only made light contact with the ball which made it easy for Barnfather.
Jared’s eagerness gave Britannia their only clear chance of the first half. Running back to cover a cross he thundered the ball towards our goal. It was only Chino’s fingertips that kept our goal safe and kept Jared from the embarrassment of OG of the season! At the other end Evan spurned a couple of further chances to increase our lead.
37 minutes in however and Evan finally found his range. A delightful through ball from deep by Andrew Lopez found Jared wide left. Goal scorer turned provider by squaring a pass to Evan who finally saw his effort hit the back of the net. 2-0 up and flying. Britannia seemed in disarray and with little to counter act United’s attacks.
Referee Mr Parody, who is fast becoming one of Gibraltar’s top refs, brought the half to a close with United in the ascendancy. The second half kicked off with Britannia only having 8 men on the field, a symptom of how they were playing the game. Yet Britannia were to have the rub of the green in the second 45 minutes. The 2 goal deficit seemed to have woken them up and they were pressing all over the pitch.
They started to lionise possession but any danger was quickly snuffed out by our effective back 4 and the evergreen Robba in midfield; Duane appeared to cover every blade of synthetic grass today and was ably assisted by Andrew in this endeavour. Every player in red and white ran their socks off for the cause today. Robert had a golden chance to put us 3 p but his snap shot sailed wide and far. Sean Gilbert was also guilty of complacency in front of goal as quick passing counter attack play saw United get in behind a number of times.
The ref called time after 3 minutes of added time on these most priceless of 3 points. Glacis United did what they had to do last night, Gibraltar United responded emphatically this afternoon. Onto the next round of matches were we face 2nd placed Europa FC though the Reserves are in action on Tuesday.