Sunday 17 November 2013
Village Manchester fell to a disappointing 3-2 defeat to Deloitte as they suffered their second loss of the season at the University Pitches on Sunday.
A late failed fitness test from player/manager McAuley meant that McNaught made his return to the starting line up sooner than expected as he replaced James Wilson. Alex Wilson returned from Wales to take a place on the bench beside Panos.
Earlier in the season Village grabbed a last minute winner - thanks to a rare header from Jones - and were hoping to put in a good performance to keep up the pressure at the top of the table. They were to be undone though by some careless mistakes and some lax finishing.
The action got underway on a fairly bumpy and leafy pitch and Deloitte had the first chance of the game in the most simple of circumstances. A hit and hope clearance was flicked on and found the opposition's long haired striker on the edge of the box. Under pressure from a Village defender, he sliced horribly wide and Village could breathe a sigh of relief.
Play went straight back up to the other end of the pitch as Connell drew a good save out of the keeper - who was in inspired form - from Ure's free kick.
Village continued to exert their pressure in a promising opening 20 minutes and a perfectly weighted pass from Clayton found Golds who easily beat his marker and shot towards the goal. The keeper was equal to it and pushed the shot out of harm's way. A quick free kick from Langford again found Golds but his tempting ball was cleared away for a corner which came to nothing.
The good work in the opening period was undone in the 25th minute as Ure took too long to clear and a Deloitte striker nipped in and shot towards goal. Baker did well to save the shot but the ball fell to an opposition midfielder who showed great technique to hit a first time shot which found the back of the net via the post. 1-0
Another mistake, this time a missed header from Hardern, went unpunished as an opposition player shot wide from 25 yards out.
Village had a couple of chances to grab a goal and get themselves on a level footing before half time but couldn't quite manage it.
Clayton again played a nice ball in, this time to Carter, and the striker produced a magnificent touch to create some space for himself. His shot however was not as magnificent and the goalie had little trouble keeping it out. Another good touch just before half time opened up another chance for the Chelsea fan but this time he shot wide.
Langford came the closest to scoring for Village as he took a free kick from the centre of the pitch not far outside the box. His well placed shot had the keeper diving to his right to keep their lead intact going into half time.
Half time: Deloitte 1-0 VMFC1
The half time team talk urged the players to communicate more and to up their work rate. Alex Wilson replaced Holmes in a switch that saw Langford move out to the wing and Golds move up front.
The team talk seemed to have the desired effect and Reece, who delivered numerous dangerous balls into the box in the first half, produced another couple of crosses that had the Deloitte defence scrambling.
Village got a perfect chance to get back into the game as they were awarded a penalty as Carter went down in the box following a push. The awarding of the penalty may have been a little soft but if the foul had happened anywhere else on the pitch the referee would have given it so it was maybe justified that Village were awarded this chance. They nearly didn't take this chance however as Reece's penalty was at a comfortable height for the keeper to get his hands to. Luckily, Langford was quickest to react and he slammed the rebound home. 1-1
One, almost instantly, became two as a bad defensive header saw Carter bear down on goal with the ball at his feet. As throughout most of this game however, the impressive Deloitte keeper kept the ball out as he got his legs in the way of the shot.
Village were made to pay for their licentiousness as Deloitte regained their lead just after the hour mark. A clever through ball found the Deloitte left winger inside the box. His shot was smartly pushed away by Baker but this time the opposition forward was quickest to react and he was left all alone to poke home at the far post. 2-1
Village were eager to get back on level terms again and had two chances in quick succession. Firstly, Langford's attempt struck a post and not long after Carter again found the keeper's arms as he directed Reece's powerful header towards goal.
It was then that things started to go a bit crazy! Deloitte were reduced to 10 men as they had a player shown a straight red card following a tackle and some choice (and we guess bad!) language. Panos quickly came on for Clayton and the Greek's first involvement saw him challenge the keeper following a loose ball. Unfortunately the keeper injured his arm and was unable to continue. With no substitutes on the bench, Deloitte had to see out the rest of the game with 9 men as they had to put one of their outfield players in goal.
McNaught immediately tried to test the new 'keeper' but dragged his shot wide. Despite having a two man advantage, Village were given a scare as some lazy defending saw an opposition player run down the right and close in on goal. The initial shot was saved by Baker's chest and the follow up was blazed over.
Village got back on level terms for the second time in the game as a great ball from the left found Connell in the box. The midfielder's impressive leap and accurate header left the stand-in keeper with no chance. 2-2
The team were eager to get a winner and a change in formation - going three at the back - meant that chances were created. Connell nearly scored an almost identical goal as a perfect cross from Alex Wilson was making its way towards him. Unfortunately the Blackburn Rovers supporter couldn't double his tally for the day as his header went straight at the keeper.
Reece also had an attempt to grab the winner as he got his head onto the end of a free kick. He could only grimace however as the ball went the wrong side of the post.
And a sucker punch was to come as Deloitte grabbed a winner with minutes to go. With Village pushing players up to try and get a winner themselves, they were left exposed at the back and Baker found himself one-on-one with an opposition attacker. The Deloitte forward cleverly lifted the ball over the American, rounded him and tapped the ball into the open net.
The goal and the subsequent final whistle saw the Deloitte players jump with joy and, to be honest, it was a result that their hard work and effort deserved.
Village will be utterly disappointed that they could not take advantage of the extra men and will be left to think about the 'what ifs'.
It will be a couple of weeks until the team can right the wrong in the league again as they have two cup games in the next two weeks - firstly against GCJT in the FA County Cup and then against Vida in the Handi-Cup.
Full time: Deloitte 3-2 VMFC1
Other league results:
Lawds 5-1 Iraq
Saints 2-1 PWC
Sporting Manchester 0-2 South Manchester