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I Delgetto clears

Photo:  Isaac Delgetto (No.13) clears the Launceston City lines [PlessPix]

Launceston City, the bottom side in the Victory League, scored an important win on Saturday, beating sixth-ranked Kingborough Lions United 2-1 away at Lightwood Park.

After a goalless opening half, City struck twice in the second period before conceding near the end and having to endure a nail-biting finish before collecting the three points.

D Watkins clears

Photo:  Kingborough's Dean Watkins clears as City's Toby Omenihu rushes in [PlessPix]

Date: 26 July 2014

Result: Kingborough Lions United 1-2 Launceston City

 

Scorers

Kingborough Lions United:

D Cowen 83

Launceston City:

N Bartlett 49

A Hedge 80 og

 

Venue: Lightwood Park

Attendance: 100

L Verdouw tackles Bartlett

Photo:  City skipper Nathan Bartlett on the reciving end of a tackle by Lions' Lewis Verdouw [PlessPix]

 

Match Overview: The first half was terrible. Both sides found it difficult to control the ball and pass it accurately. The technical standard left a lot to be desired.

Kingborough had a marvellous chance after a quarter of an hour when a defensive error gifted possession to Joel Schuth, but he sent his shot over the bar.

City had two chances when Lions keeper Andrew Duncan inexplicably dropped the ball, but one went wide while the second was cleared off the line.

The second half began with Kingborough on the attack and only a brilliant block by City keeper David Smith, from Benn Watkins’s fierce shot following a pass across the goalmouth by Schuth, denied the home side the lead.

In the 49th minute, City skipper Nathan Bartlett chipped Duncan from 30 metres to put the visitors ahead.

In the 71st minute, Lewis Verdouw set up Cowen for an easy tap-in with a low cross from the right, but the Lions striker missed from point-blank range.

Ten minutes from the end, a cross from the right by City’s Andrew Compagne found Gukhyeon Kim, whose looping header came back off the base of the far left-hand post and was turned into his own net by substitute Adam Hedge, who was all arms and legs as he desperately tried to clear.

Kingborough pulled a goal back with 7 minutes remaining through Cowen, who slotted home a low cross from the right by Philip McEldowney.

But, despite a frantic attacking display by the Lions in the closing minutes, City held on for all three points.

12 Lions clear

Photo:  The Lions' Dean Watkins comes away with the ball pursued by City's Isaac Delgetto [PlessPix]

Key Moment: The fine block by Launceston City keeper David Smith a minute into the second half. Joel Schuth flashed the ball across the box from left to right and straight to the onrushing Benn Watkins. His powerful first-time shot was bravely blocked at the near post by Smith. If that had gone in, it may have paved the way for a Lions win.

Man-of-the-Match: Launceston City’s Nathan Bartlett, who led by example, winning a titanic battle in midfield with Kingborough’s Lewis Verdouw and scoring the opening goal 4 minutes after the resumption with a delightful shot from all of 30 metres that beat Andrew Duncan and dipped under the bar.

Matter of fact: It was the fourth loss in a row for Kingborough under new coach Colin Robbins, and it was only the second win for Launceston City in their two years in the Victory League.

Talking points: Can Kingborough Lions United stop the rot that has seen them lose seven games in succession? They are just 3 points ahead of sixth-placed Glenorchy Knights and 6 in front of bottom-side Launceston City with 5 games remaining. And, can City catch Knights?

Why did Launceston City only have one substitute when Victory League teams have to name 20-man squads?

Referee Charles White had an excellent Victory League debut.  But, does it put him in an awkward position being appointed to this game when he once starred for Kingborough Lions United?  Who makes these appointments?

Park turns

Photo:  Launceston City's Yang Jin Park (right) turns on the ball [PlessPix]

 

Stats:

Goal attempts

Kingborough Lions United 20

Launceston City 9

On target

Kingborough Lions United 7

Launceston City 6

Corners

Kingborough Lions United 6

Launceston City 4

Fouls

Kingborough Lions United 14

Launceston City 13

Off-sides

Kingborough Lions United 3

Launceston City 5

D Watkins and 13

Photo:  Kingborough's Dean Watkins beats Launceston City's Isaac Delgetto to the ball [PlessPix]

 

Line-ups:

Kingborough Lions United:

1 Duncan

12 D Watkins

5 Cuthbertson

9 Young

17 McEldowney

14 T Pearce

8 Verdouw

4 Bilson (3 Hedge 73)

11 Schuth (2 J Davis 61)

7 Cowen

10 B Watkins

 

Launceston City:

1 Smith

11 Mattarozzi

3 S Egan

5 Martin

8 Park

7 Kim

13 Degetto

10 Bartlett

6 Omenihu

20 Compagne (17 Gugliotti 83)

16 Scicluna

Scicluna and Bilson

Photo:  Launceston City's Paul Scicluna gets away from Kingborough's Thomas Bilson [PlessPix]

 

Yellow Cards

Kingborough Lions United:

14 T Pearce 86

Launceston City:

S Egan 27

Compagne 79

 

Referee: Mr Charles White

Referee Charles White

Photo:  Referee Charles White was in charge of his first Victory League match.  He is shown (centre) at half-time being congratulated by one of his assistants, Alistair Cooke [PlessPix]