Match corresponding to the 18th Round of the Gibraltarian Premier Division and played on Sunday 21st February 2016 at 16:30.
Gibraltar United Football Club 0 – 1 Manchester 62 Football Club
Gibraltar United Football Club
1 Kyle ‘Chino’ Goldwin
11 Jared Buhagiar
19 Brad Power
26 Jaydan Catania
77 Kaylan Rumbo
88 Carl Thomas
10 Andrew Lopez (C)
21 Duane Robba
24 ‘Pitu’ Anes
6 Dexter Panzavechia
8 Robert Montovio
Steffan Cardona on for Jaydan Catania
Evan Green on for ‘Pitu’ Anes
Ashely Perez on for Andrew Lopez
League action returns on a blustery weekend that has seen the wind play a crucial role in the fixtures so far. Though it has died down today it is still a dull February day. It sees Gib Utd square up to a rejuvenated Man 62. We beat them 1-0 in the first round and come into this fixture after a 2-1 loss to Angels FC. Manolo Nuñez welcomes back Robert Montovio from suspension and Kaylan Rumbo returns to the XI. Nuñez has opted for a 5-4-1 formation which served him well in the recent victory against Glacis United as the Red and White go in search of a second win over Man 62 that will see the 6 point gap with Glacis reopen.
The game itself was an almost true reflection of the weather, dull and uninspiring. The first half was a cagey affair that saw few chances for either side with Jeremy Lopez having the best opportunity for the Red Devils while for Gib Utd it would inevitably by Robert Montovio with the clearest sniff of goal. So the half would progress until its dying minutes when Chino was called to deny Toncheff with a smart save with his legs while at the other end a tame shout for a penalty kick was waved away by referee Mr Gilbert who would have a pretty decent game. The decently sized crowd was hoping for a better match in the second half.
Nuñez was forced into a pair of changes at half time due to injury. Catania was replaced by Cardona while Evan Green replaced Pitu. This last change was to be a catalyst for action in the game as both he and Carl Thomas carried most of our offensive play in the second half. Indeed both teams came out hungrier and looking for the three points. Though Man 62 created the early pressure it was United with the first clear chance as Thomas fed Montovio a delightful through ball that only a last ditch tackle by Rovegno cleared. Minutes later Andrew Lopez sent a header over the bar, the pressure on the Man 62 goal was mounting.
Man 62 were also bringing their own danger to bear too with Navarro looking to be particularly productive down their left wing. Baena ws the next Man 62 player to try his luck as he sped past Rumbo and Power only to see his shot sail over the bar. Try as they might both teams were locked in battle with no clear winner. As energy levels dropped Ashley Perez replaced Lopez as Manolo sought some more creativity on the left side of our attack to balance the excellent play Evan and Paco were showing down our right.
Chino was the equal of several Man 62 players especially in a save down low near the post from Tocnheff. Pressure ebbed and flowed from one side of the pitch to the other and the game seemed to be destined to end in a draw. Mikey Yome, however had other ideas. Benefiting from 3 very fortunate ricochets he was able to whizz a shot past the flaying Chino. The GFA striker wheeled off in celebration as United players dropped to the floor in disbelief. A body blow so close to the final whistle.
To their credit they surged forwards until that final whistle with Brad Power testing the keeper with a a wonderful turn and hit from outside the area and Jared Buhagiar having our last chance of the game blasting a shot from distance over then bar. 3 points then for Man 62 when a share of the spoils would have been the fairest result.