On Friday we had 16 players, on Saturday we were down to 14 with Magu and Will having to pull out. Oh not again I thought. 2 players not showing up to the match until 5 min before the game and it was looking touch and go. Saying that we had a first 11 that somewhat resembled our actual team for once. Stand in captain and Manager Pricey had a couple of key decisions to make before the match with all the last min changes. We opted to go with 4-5-1 putting 3 big guys in the centre of the park to counter to Swiss’s own 4-5-1... We had a good chat at the beginning of the game and ran through what the manager wanted. After being in charge for 3 games now his vision and what he expects of the players is now starting to sink in and we started off the game really well.
It only took a couple of mins for us to start making chances with the Swiss on the back foot for the first 30 mins. We enjoyed some really good possession with Rémi playing out of his skin with Pricey and Bastien attacking the wings and pulling the defence all over the place. We knew we had the speed and Rémi was getting the ball into feet and then playing in the wingers on the overlap through the channels. Gary was marshalling his defence really well and the midfield was winning everything in the air leaving only the long ball for the Swiss down the middle to try their luck. The first goal was a great sweeping move from left to right Pricey ending up making space in the box. He received it and laid it off to Radek on the edge of the box for him to drill in into the corner. This was exactly what the Manager had asked of him at the beginning of the game. When you predict what’s gonna happen it shows the team you do actually know what you’re talking about and it gives the team confidence. Confidence in the tactics and confidence in your self. Pricey then got put through 1-1 from Remi's wonderful through ball and really should have made it 2-0. He just couldn’t get it out of his feet. A couple of chances went begging and then a long hoof up the pitch from the Swiss found Cuong well out of position on the edge of his box and his attempted punt clattered off the oncoming striker for him to have an easy tap in once the ball fell nicely for him. A bit against the run of play but with our chances in shouldn’t have mattered and now we needed to go in search of another goal. Nils playing his first game for latini won the ball in midfield and put in Bastien who made a great dash down the right. After missing a sitter earlier he made no mistake this time with the keeper failing to leave his line and Bastien having an easy shot into the far post to make it 2-1.
Halftime and we took a couple of mins to reflect in our own minds about the half. We made two of our 3 subs to maximise peoples game time. You shouldn’t give up your Saturday and get less than 45min. it’s a rule Pricey is now adamant about. Ruchdi said he didn’t have 45 min in him so he was excused at his own request and he stayed on the bench. (Well he actually didn’t have 10min in him)
2nd half started just like the first ended with some chances going begging. The Swiss now trying everything to back on level par. The game was getting heated and some big tackles were flying in with the Swiss's own gob having a pop at the officials, his own team and our team. Nice to know we are not the only ones with this problem every week! The Swiss then hit the crossbar and should have had a pen after a rash challenge by Gary on the edgiest (that’s not a word but your get my meaning) of the box...Cuong made a goal line save from a great header. And the Swiss were looking like they were coming back into the game. Ruchdi who had been on for only 5 min then got in a tussle with the American fighter for the Swiss and got himself sent off. he said sorry at the end of the game and to be fair he was hit first an dthe swiss guy got off lightly. At this point the game was end to end. A great through ball by gob found Rémi in the channel only to get hacked down by Swiss gob and was very lucky to stay of the pitch. The resulting free kick was as good as you will see in the Premiership dipping and curling but only found the inside of the post. Someone really should have pounced on the rebound but in the end the keeper managed to gather the ball. A quick break down the left again... the Pricey, Rémi connection. Exchanging passes twice and Remi’s back heal found Pricey who made no mistake to smash in our third of the match and send Latini into raptures to seal the game. The Swiss for the last few mins really pushed and another red card was given to Swiss Gob who obviously wanted to go home early for backchat with the ref….
All in all another derby classic. It’s strange because we seem to have a derby every week!
Mom has to go to Rémi for his work rate and his passing to other team mates!!!!!!!!!! Finally ….. lol
Refs were again very good… Marshalled a very feisty game that could have gone either way. Thanks to the Swiss who are always a very tough opponent...