Match Reports

Kendall Wanderers 'B' 3 - 2 Spartak Framingham

Match Statistics

Competition:
BSSL Cup
Venue:
Danehy Park #1, Cambridge, MA
Date:
6/14/2008
Kickoff Time:
8 am
Weather:
Hot and humid
Pitch Conditions:
Dust bowl
Team Lineup:
Gerard Maher, Nick Sze, Kenny McCarthy, Andy Lawless, Mick McCormack, Ray Kim, Phil O'Driscoll, Rob McAuley, Dave Power, Mick Murphy, Jonathon Kelliher
Subs:
James Canny, Noel Coffey, Tyler Dennison, Chris Zura, Paul Garvey
Team Formation:
4-5-1
Goal Scorers:
Kenny McCarthy, Chris Zura, Tyler Dennison
Assists:
Noel Coffey, Paul Garvey, Chris Zura
Man of the Match:
Kenny McCarthy
Bookings:
None
None

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz that's how I started the game but for the rest of the team in was a tough start to a busy day at the office in the second round of the BSSL Cup.Kendall having an almost 100% start to the season faced a challenging game against premier side Spartak Framingham and it didn't do the team any favors when their first choice goalkeeper was AWOL for the first 15 mins of the game. The venue was a bumpy, dusty field in Cambridge known as the "Dust Bowl" and Kendall started with a 4-5-1 formation with three men in the center of the park to deal with the premier side.

The game got off the scrappy start (I was told). With both teams trying to find their feet and adjust to the conditions as fast they could. Spartak struck first taking an early lead following a free kick. The ball was played in and promptly cleared by the Kendall defence only to fall to a Spartak player who struck the ball into the back of the net with stand in keeper Tyler having no chance as it was a well taken goal by the premier side.

Kendall's already difficult challenge increased following the home sides opener and the question was: Where the Kendall boys up to the task? The answer was emphatic!!! The high flying first division outfit rose to the challenge and put the premier side under intense pressure with some good passing from the alternating men in the center, and great play on the wings with Yooki who had a lovely new hairstyle and Phil causing the Spartak full backs headaches with some mazy runs. At the back the Kendall defence was rock solid as ever with Kenny and Andy being their usual consistent selves and full backs, the ever young Mick, Noel and Nick dealing well with the premier outfit front men.

The well deserved equalizer came following a Kendall corner that was earned after a quality move from the first division side. A trademark ball in with pace by Noel Coffey was met perfectly with a power full header by center back Kenny who rose well above his man at the back post to bring the scores level. Only for the net the ball would have continued for another mile or so such was the power of the header.

Kendall set up camp in the Spartak half until half time a had a few half chances before the break with strikers JK and Chris working tirelessly up front when either of the two was in the lonely role against the Spartak backline. Spartak failed to get out of their own half and with yours truely now between the sticks eventually, thanks Joe and his lovely red mini for picking me up had nothing to do but observe Kendall outplay the premier side.

Following a well deserved rest, a refreshing drink of water kindly provided by fellow intern Phil "I love fags" O'Driscoll, some words of wisdom from the Trinity of Canny, Coffey and Garvey and of course not forgetting an explanation for my late arrival, Kendall picked up where they left off and went straight at the Spartak defense. From the restart it was attack after attack, the premier side having no answer to Kendall's determination and desire to win the game and advance to the next round of the cup.

Kendall toke a well deserved lead with an excellently worked goal down the right hand side. Rob went past his man with ease on the wing and sent a low ball flying across the box where it was brilliantly cut back by Paul "I'm your man for the wall" Garvey and the oncoming Chris finished with confidence to the delight of the Kendall traveling supporters.

Spartak response was handled with poise by the Kendall defense with the back four soaking up the pressure like a sponge and passing the ball with ease around the back, linking up well with the midfield. Andy and Kenny partnership is growing in strength every week and once again they proved why they are so highly rated. According to the press Giovanni Trappatoni is interested in giving them a few caps.

Spartak had a few long range efforts that were dealt comfortably by yours truly and it was following a Spartak effort that Kendall toke a 3-1 lead. I sent the ball long with precision onto the head of JK who got to the ball before his man and played through Tyler who made an excellent run from midfield. Tyler still had it all to do but he made it look easy and with some help from the Spartak keeper who dived to his right for no apparent reason leaving Tyler who kept his composure to knock the ball into the net to give the first division side a well earned two goal cushion.

Spartak response was a positive one and they upped the tempo of their play. It was their turn to put their lower division under pressure. The top tier side pushed up well and kept the Kendall team in their half for the final 15 mins of the entertaining cup clash. They created some chances but only one effort was on target which was looping into the top corner but yours truly fresh from my extra 15 mins in bed sprung up and touched the ball onto the crossbar redeeming my late arrival.

Kendall had a late journey into the Spartak box with JK going past his man inside only to go down under contact from the defender. The ref played on though despite JK's familiar cry that he is notorious for so far this season, a cry that could be heard all the way from Ireland. The judges scored him 4.5, 4.5, and 5.0 for his 1.7 degree of difficulty dive.

Spartak did get a late goal to make it 3-2 but on the day Kendall were the better side and wanted it more which was evident from their performance. The game was what the cup is all about lower division teams getting a chance to prove their worth and the Kendall lads certainly did just that!

By: Gerard "Sleepy" Maher

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