Mistakes Cost Pirates Dear As Need-A-Cab Run Riot
(Wednesday 8th April 2015)
The penultimate game of The Pirates season was a midweek affair at Chaucer Way vs the very much in from Need-A-Cab, who themselves look odds on to claim the P&WD Division 3 League Title. Tonight’s match was game 3 of The Supplementary Cup Group B, a group that technically could see The Pirates still qualify from if they could grab 2 wins from their final 2 games & score a positive goal difference, but at the end of the evening that possibility would be well & truly put to bed.
The game got under to evening sunshine, both teams playing their 1st midweek fixture of 2015, The Pirates making several changes to the starting XI from the weekends defeat against Real Saltash, Rhys Jones replaced the injured Richard Johns in goal, Andy Brettell doing the same at Right Back to cover James Berntsen’s ankle problem, in Midfield Michael Brown, Enda Hannigan & Paul Millar came back in as well. Lining up in Manager Kris Carpenter’s preferred 4-2-3-1 formation early signs were good, Brown, Bruty & Luckham all making good progress in the middle of the park & retaining possession as a team, but 10mins in Need-A-Cab struck 1st, a long ball from the right hand side was struck in behind the men in Red’s defence & when Jones spilt the ball the striker had the simple task of knocking in to the net from close range. 1-0. Need-A-Cab were now on the front foot. The goal was a huge set back for The Pirates, but another would come soon afterwards, Adam Luckham was caught high up on the ankle from a late reckless challenge in the middle of Midfield & after some attention on the sidelines it was clear that the swelling would end His participation in the game, Aaron Reed was brought on as His replacement with Enda Hannigan moving to CDM.
The Pirates gave a fighting response to going behind though, some excellent closing down & skill from Paul Millar on the byline produced a low cross which Michael Brown shot toward goal only to see the Home sides keeper produce a superb low right handed save. 3mins later another chance came & went, Nick Errington winning the ball in the Midfield area, clipping it forward towards Bruty who’s flick on released Paul Millar, only to see His shot flash narrowly wide of the far post. The minutes ticked by & on 29mins it was Need-A-Cab who went close next, Rhys Jones making a good save with His knees from the left angle of the 6yard box only to see the ball cannon across the area to the centre forward, it seemed odds on to be a 2nd goal but a superb goal line clearance from a combination of Captain for the day James Ewing along with Hannigan, Brown & Errington got the ball away, however 4mins later The Pirates would not be so fortunate. The early season Achilles heel of defending corners bit hard once again, the Home sides towering centre half powering a near post header largely unchallenged past Jones for 2-0. that would remain the scoreline at the break.
Faced with a tough task in the 2nd half The Pirates got the game back under way & on 48mins they had the 1st chance of the 2nd period, Sam Bruty doing some excellent work to shake off His marker & getting a run in on goal, just escaping the incoming challenge as He drove the shot goalwards, once again the Home side’s keeper making an excellent save, coming in to the game Bruty was carrying a torn quad muscle & it showed as He never quite looked comfortable getting up to full pace when running through on goal. Desire & determination got Him the chance in truth. To everyone in Red’s frustration only 1min later the 3rd Need-A-Cab goal arrived, a slick through ball & some hesitation between Keeper Jones & His Defenders allowing the clear shot at goal which fond the bottom right corner. 3-0, the task getting harder with every passing moment. On 59mins though The Pirates were given the chance to get back in to the game, Michael Brown’s corner from the right was handled in the box by the Home side’s Defender, the Referee pointed straight to the spot. PENALTY! Having missed their last spot kick Nick Errington stepped up to try to put that right, but, again luck was not on the takers side, the keeper saving low to His right & Aaron Reed’s follow up header fell in to the keepers hands, the miss was The Pirates 7th Penalty miss this season!
With the game fast getting away from Carpenter’s men the last 2 changes were made, with 64mins gone Sean Cross replaced the clearly in pain Sam Bruty & Chris Stephens replaced Dave Isaacs, Himself also looking tired. Cross made an immediate impact, receiving the ball on the left side, beating 2 men & trying His luck from 20 yards, a comfortable save for the keeper but a good effort never the less, but 4mins later it was Rhys Jones who was back in the thick of the action, making a superb tip over from a rasping 25yard drive. Despite their best efforts the Away side were put to the sword in the final 15mins 2 goals in 2mins on 73 & 74 ended any feint hope of a comeback to make it 4 & then 5-0 & as the final 10mins ebbed away only a long range Aaron Reed strike would register as a further effort on goal for Carpenter’s charges, with 2 further late strikes on 86 & 89mins the game was finished off bringing to an end a miserable evening for The Pirates. The final score 7-0.
Jones, Brettell, Ewing (c), Errington, Holder, Luckham, Isaacs, Brown, Hannigan, Millar, Bruty.
Reed, Cross, Stephens.
Match Sum Up
An easy way to sum this game up was to say a 2nd half disasterpiece! Coming in at the break 2-0 down was no disgrace, particularly when both goals were unfortunate errors, but in the 2nd half The Pirates were simply outfought & bullied out of the game, difficult to pull any positives from the game in all truth, James Ewing did a good job as stand in skipper for the evening, never giving up on any challenge & trying to drive the team onwards, Sam Bruty also deserves credit for playing with an injury in the name of the cause, but other than that & MOTM Paul Millar overall this was a night to forget for The Pirates, just one game left of the season now, an away trip to play Friary Reserves. COYP.
Man Of The Match
The Man Of The Match award this week goes to Paul Millar. A tough night to pick out one player in all honesty, but Paul’s efforts did stand out over most, playing as one of the 3 central Midfielders His close control, committed tackling & efforts to always take The Pirates forward were clear for all to see, He was also at the heart of most chances created on the night & having His energy levels & running power is a real plus to the team. Long may it continue. Congrats Paul.
Man Of The Match: Paul Millar