VIEWS: 13 PAGES: 2 POSTED ON: 10/19/2010
Coffs United Lions V Coffs Coast Tigers On Saturday afternoon the lions hosted the Tigers having claimed top spot from their cross town rivals just the week previous. The Tigers only one point below the Lions and missing three of their starting eleven knew a big effort would be required. Tigers Coach Baumgartner gave the very talented Kodjo Afan his first start in ten or more weeks and also brought defender Curt Dixon back into the side after a six week lay off due to injury. Even though it was more than five years since the Tigers took maximum points from the Lions, Baumgartner was confident his side still had the goods to cause the Lions some trouble. The match kicked off and the Lions had a strong breeze at their backs, pushing hard to assert their dominance, attempting to play the game in the Tigers half of the field. Early half chances to Ben Mackay and Nick Choppy Lambert were defused well by a Tigers defensive intensity that went missing the week previous. Strong play from deep in the Tigers half of the field by the likes of Dane Dixon and Kodjo Afan presented Otis Barney and Kodjo Adjassou with several excellent chances to take the lead, though early chances were fired astray. Kodjo Afan regularly broke the Lions defense down causing headaches for the likes of Nathan Silvy and Flipper Wiseman sending several warning shots over the Lions Bows. Constructive possession football from both sides was the agenda though it was Dane Dixon and Rhys Lamrock that regularly broke the rhythmic ambitions of the Lions midfield runners. For the Lions Ben Mackay glanced a header just past the outside of the post and forced two solid saves from Tigers keeper Jake Mahoney ten minutes before half time. Anthony Wiseman also had a goal bound shot deflected away by Curt Dixon in the minutes before the break. At half time the score nil all thanks to excellent teamwork, lead by the defensive pressure of defenders Trent Lakeman and Paul Siljeg afforded the Tigers potent strike force the extra confidence they needed. Just several minute’s into the second half and a segment of pristine one touch passing football by the Tigers had the Lions defense in knots. Kodjo Adjassou was hit by a miss timed tackle by a Lions defender in the reds penalty area. Dane Dixon stepped up to secure the Tigers the lead with a well placed strike from the spot. This lifted a weight from the Tigers backs and again they pounced minutes later when Kodjo Adjassou and Otis Barney combined to mesmerize the Lions defense. Adjassou placed a pass to an unmarked Barney who glided his shot into the corner of the goal past the out stretched Wiseman in the Lions goal. Staring a rare two nil deficit in the face the Lions lifted and tried to raise their game. Nick Lambert found himself in space with a chance to get his side back in the match but only managed to deflect his shot wide off the post. Twenty minutes gone in the second half and a miss hit shot by Lions playmaker Nathan Silvy recoiled kindly into the path of Sam Mackay who placed the ball into the goal and sent Tigers heart rates skyward. The score was 2-1 to the Tigers and they needed to steady the ship. Steady her they did just a matter of minutes later when the Tigers potent attacking speed forced a miss timed back pass by a Lions defender. Still with plenty to do Josh Wiseman advanced from his goal line as a rampant Kodjo Adjassou pounced on the high bouncing ball to beat Wiseman with a deft floating chip into the top left corner of goal that only he could attempt and achieve. The score 3-1 to the Tigers and the curse that has seen them go for six years without beating the Lions seemed to be broken. Only minutes later the Tigers were on the attack again as the Lions were forced into desperate long balls to a tiring strike pairing of Lambert and Mackay. The Lions frustration was evident when some cries of anguish were heard from some of their players as the Tigers repeatedly pulled the Lions to pieces. Luke Stow found himself in shooting range late on only to miss time his usually accurate shooting. It was from one of these Stow chances that the Tigers scored a fourth goal ten minutes from time when Otis Barney rose high in the area to head a David Adjassou corner into the left side of goal. The Lions were now at sixes and sevens and turned every stone and plundered every playbook move they could in the final ten minutes of the match but the Tigers wall held strong. The best chance the Lions had for a late consolation goal was headed clear off the line by the Tigers man of the match Paul Siljeg much to the appreciation of his goal keeper Jake Mahoney. The Tigers will now look towards winning the remaining three games of the season proper in an attempt to claim their maiden minor premiership and a home ground semi final. The Tigers Youth side had another fantastic win beating the Lions 1-0 in a hard fought match with the only goal of the game scored by Jack Cambell. Can the Tiger Cubs continue their late season surge to claim a top four spot. Keep it rolling guys. Man of the Match for the Tigers was the kid with the fastest gloves on the coast Luke Kliendienst.
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