Frustrated Pirates Come Unstuck On Plastic Pitch
(Sunday 9th November 2014)
The Pirates returned to action on Sunday after a 1 week break due to no fixture. Real Saltash Reserves were the hosts on the old school style 3G surface at Saltash’s Saltmill Park. Despite the midweek wet weather the sun was out at kickoff, the Home side beginning the game in 4th position, whilst The Pirates were looking to get back on track after their defeat at the hands of Plymouth Hope 2 weeks ago.
The game kicked off, with the Home side attacking the goal to the left in the 1st half. The 1st goal would arrive early, sadly it wasn’t to be a Pirates goal. An unchallenged right winger got to the byline & swung in a delightful cross allowing the centre forward to place a controlled finish in to the corner. worst possible start. 1-0. Stunned from the early set back The Pirates attempted to get on the front foot, forwards Callum Knight & Sean Cross making runs across the front line in a somewhat forced 4-4-2 formation for the day, personnel dictating the system. As The Pirates began find their rhythm a bolt from the blue would put them further behind, at the turn of the 14th the midfield play maker for Real Saltash gathered the ball 25 yards from goal, took a glance up & proceeded to unleash an unstoppable drive high in to the top corner, 2 keepers wouldn’t have stopped the shot in truth, Rhys Jones stood no chance. It was 2-0.
Shell shocked by 2 early goals the Away side looked to kick in to gear with a quick reply, Midfielder Dan Amador’s through ball found Callum Knight who saw His shot well saved. More followed with Steve Lacy & James Berntsen cranking up the pressure down the right hand side with some quick passing & direct running at the opposition defenders. Despite the strong efforts to get the next goal The Pirates were to suffer 2 further quick fire goals against them before half-time, the 1st in truth was very poor, directly from a goal kick the ball evading the unlucky James Ewing’s jump after skipping up off the surface, one bounce, the striker racing in to convert for 3-0 & just 3mins later it was 4-0 a low cross drilled home at the near post. The break couldnt come quickly enough for the men in Red in truth, a really disappointing half. Half-Time 4-0.
The 2nd half would see a much improved effort from The Pirates, a change was made at the interval, with Adam Luckham replacing Aaron Reed in the centre of the park, a strong team talk firing up the team, however, as with so many other occasions things would get worse before they got better. Just 3mins in to the 2nd half The Pirates shipped a 5th, the Achilles heel, corners! A brilliant goal line clearance from Greg Davis should have been cleared 2 or even 3 times, however when this didn’t happen the forward was left a simple finish from the 6 yard box for 5-0. Further subs were made by Boss Carpenter, Dave Isaacs & Chris Stephens for Sean Cross & Steve Lacy, both players having run their legs off all game.
After 60mins finally the away side had something to build from, a goal back! Callum Knight capitalising on a deflected shot to bundle home the rebound from close range, to make it 5-1, but, once again a setback would follow straight away, 3mins later in fact, poor defending allowing a throw in to make its way in to the penalty area coupled with poor marking as the forward drilled in number 6. Callum Knight notched His 2nd goal of the game on the 73rd minute, after a delightful through ball & after a wayward shot from Adam Luckham the striker completed His 2nd Hat-Trick in Pirates colours after rounding the keeper. 6-3, but only 8mins to play, could the impossible happen? Sadly not. In fact the Home side went on to add a late 7th directly from a 30 yard freekick. A really dissapointing end to a game The Pirates hoped for more from.
All in all the heads were hung after today’s game, granted the plastic pitch was a very good equalizer for the Home side, but being beaten by an essentially long ball hoofing team is a bit hard to take. Truth be told The Pirates started the game far to slowly & never managed to recover from that, the goals from Callum Knight are a real bonus to the team but crucial errors as a team defensively are costing results. That being said subject to the always rough November weather fixtures upcoming present a real chance to get back on track very soon.
The Man Of The Match award this week goes to Callum Knight. Celebrating His offer of an opportunity to play South West level by training with Elburton Villa FC Callum narrowly took the MOTM award from James Berntsen this week. Both players having very strong games on the day. Ultimately Callum’s 3 goals gave Him the nod, tireless running up front, chasing down lost causes & often making His own luck to grab the 3 strikes. His presence in the team represents a real goal threat & The Pirates continue to benefit from the attacking flair He brings. Congrats Callum.
Goal Scorers: Knight (60, 73, 82)
Jones, Berntsen, Ewing, Hannigan (c) Brown, Reed, Lacy, Amador, Davis, Knight, Cross.
Luckham, Isaacs, Stephens.
Man Of The Match: Callum Knight