The top two faced off in a game that USRC had to win to keep the title race open but no-one could have predicted the mauling DB suffered at Kings Park going down 7-1 to a USRC team who traditionally have been stronger in the 2nd half of the season. USRC manager Cairns felt his team were better throughout but did acknowledge a “50/50” decision to send off DB’s Martin Rigby was “probably harsh” but as soon as the ref though it was a foul he had to go. However, DB Manager Gazza Rollinson slated the ref for bias decision throughout – red card, 2nd and 3rd goals offside, clear foul for 7th goal. As the dust settled on the What’s App chat what is fact is USRC now sits 4 points behind and DB will be nervously looking over their shoulders. USRC Goals: Marcello Vistola (2), Roy Man (2), Gwyll Cornes, Jamison Muncer and Kieran Mcbride with DB’s solo strike coming from Daniel Haggarty.
Goodfellas started 2019 with a bang smashing 7 past Krauts and will still feel they’re in with a great shout of entering the title race given their 2 games in hand, which if they win, would take them into 2nd in the league. Wearing an all white kit Steven Franklin fancied himself as a real life Ronaldo knocking in a hat-trick with Louis Man (2), Ed French and Sebastian Rech all adding to the scoreline.
Soho Spartans fell 3-1 to HK Scottish in a battling performance where they perhaps felt their efforts should have been rewarded with a point. Going in 1-0 down at half time to a Myles Winter goal, Soho’s drew level when a GK error allowed Li Yongsen to add to his seasons tally. However Soho’s shot themselves in the foot when an ill advised short goal kick resulted in Stags getting their noses in front once again and a last minute goal took the game away from Spartans. Scottish’s 2nd and 3rd goals scored by Miles Winter and Simon Lowth.
J Leaguers raced into a 2-0 lead (Kenichi Sekino & Masayuki Sakai) within the first 12 minutes against Bants and a thumping could have been on the cards, however, Bants showed great character to steady the ship and were rewarded on the half hour mark when some quick one touch passing on the edge of the J Leaguers box resulted in a through ball and Neal Sarwal calmly slotted home. A tight second half where there were little chances.
Wanchai Spartans and Forward fought out a fair 2-2 draw with Spartans hitting the back of the net via Benoit Douche and Andy Landsbury with Tae Hyun Moon and Julian Alexander scoring for Forward.
A new year and new leaders at the top of Division 2 as Mes leapfrogged San Pells after sweeping aside their promotion rivals 4-1 in the big game of the day. In a physical encounter with so much on the line, Oli Davies was the hero for Mes as he bagged a brace with Rob Barratt and Kevin Hennessy also getting on the scoresheet. San Pells who had Tim Foster on target rued the concession of a couple of soft goals but admitted that their opponents were worthy winners. The final result potentially opening the door for the chasing pack as both promotion spots remain up for grabs.
Poised to capitalize are a Wolves side that have gone slightly under the radar for a while, but no longer after they destroyed Young Guns 8-2. Victor Johansson continued his great season in front of goal with 2 more to add to his tally with Nathan Golding (2), Sok Hwan Maeng (2), Alistair Kanaan and Robin White completing the rout. Waiting on Young Guns to lick their wounds and provide scorers.
The main drama in the Revo vs Shui Wei game came before the first whistle with the realization 10mins before kick-off that both teams and the referees were at the wrong pitch! After a mad dash across HK Island, all parties deserve credit for getting the game on. Those that did come down to watch will probably wish they had stayed in the wrong place as attritional would be a generous way to describe the ‘action’. That being said John Zhou did score a wonderful free-kick for Shui Wei which ultimately counted for little as Tim ‘Riedle’ Rechter struck once in each half, the first a drilled finish after Andy McLeod had somehow leapt 75 foot in the air to nod the ball back across the face of the goal and the 2nd a classic Tranmere Rovers 1990s long throw nodded in (which just about summed up the quality on show). A 2-1 final result slightly harsh on Shui Wei but enough for Revo to keep them in the hunt.
Dragon Valley are another side looking to ignite the flames of promotion and kept the heat on thanks to a 3-1 victory. Their opponents BOCs were flying high on the back of their first win of the season last week and used that momentum to put up a good fight with Mohammed Lemistef smashing home from a deep corner. At this point it was already 0-2 though as Max Remington had volleyed home from a knock down and Chris Tsao finished off a counter attack. As BOCs pushed on late in the 2nd half, they were caught out at the back as Chris Tsao was in the right place at the right time to claim his 2nd and wrap up the 3 points for DV.
It wouldn’t be Div 2 this season without at least one ridiculous score and Legal Head vs Vikings duly obliged in their enthralling encounter. Citing killer hangovers and maybe a bit too much of the Christmas indulgence, Vikings were ultimately blown away 8-3 by an improved Head side. The game was virtually over after 20 minutes with 3 quick goals much to the delight of the LH gaffer who has been on the wrong side of this blitz a few times already this season. Jamie Kelly doing half of the final damage with 4 whilst Darragh Keenan (2), Bikas Gurung and Salem Kattoura added the gloss. Daniel Lee (2) and Jens Hansen with consolations for the Danes who can’t be blamed for wanting to get straight back on the Carlsberg after the frequency with which they needed to pull the ball out of the back of the net in addition to pulling their heads out of their arses.
Sticking to the theme of hammerings, Old Speckled Men showed there were no New Year cobwebs as they shot down Shooters 6-0 thanks in part to a Johnny White hat-trick. After a tight contest in the first period, OSM showed they had too much in the second half as further goals were added through James Chambers (2) and Gareth Carter. The result means that they have now opened up a 6 point cushion over 9th place as they seem certain to be part of the top half split. For Shooters the split and perhaps the end of the season can’t come quick enough as they remain bottom.
Another side looking to ensure top half football is KCC Royals and they had to chance to do so as they faced off against MBFC at King’s Park. In a game lacking quality, Royals still managed to rack up 5 goals and 3 points thanks to Sam Wolstenholme (2), Ben Walker, Ben Cadman and Paul McGunnigle. MBFC did add some semblance of respectability to the score through Liu Shengduo and a Pang Chao penalty but for a side that has now conceded 74 goals in 13 games, the thought of not playing any of the top 8 later in the season must come as some sort of relief.
Samurai Blue went into their game with Cavs knowing that pretty much only a win would do in order to keep them in the hunt for 8th place. In what seemed to be a highly charged, entertaining game the woodwork was ultimately to blame/thank for the final result as Cavs squeaked out a narrow 2-1 victory to move them back up to 3rd and just 2 points off the promotion spots. In a game where both sides felt they deserved the points, Gauravdeep Singh Pansotra gave Cavs an early lead before a wonderful team goal was finished off by Maji Peter Kassam to draw Sam Blue level. The winner came from a piece of individual brilliance from Krishna Mohinani as Samurai were left bemoaning their luck (and the width of the bar) as they pressed for an equalizer that never came.
Good luck for 2019 and Happy New Year to all teams and all involved with the league.