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Grand Final


Sun 16 Mar, 2.35pm, 2014
Kiwitea St, Sandringham

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Play by Play / Wrap



YoungHeart Manawatu

Otago United


NZFC - Round 4, FMG Stadium,  25 November


Trent Watson 23
Adam Cowan 52, 56
Ian Robinson 53
Dominic Rowe 64
Gouzalo Nieres 90




Halftime: 1-0                      Referee: Neil Fox                               Crowd: 


Manawatu eye big fry after Otago put to the sword

Adam Cowan turned the game on its head with the first of his two goals. Photo: Rowena DuncumAUCKLAND – YoungHeart Manawatu produced a compelling dress-rehearsal ahead of a potentially season defining fortnight in Auckland with a 6-0 drubbing of Otago United in Palmerston North on Sunday.

Trent Watson’s 23rd minute goal was all Manawatu had to show for their first half dominance in the bottom-of-the-table clash at a sun-baked FMG Stadium.

But Shane Rufer’s men went into overdrive after the break with four goals in a 12-minute spurt - including 52nd and 56th minute goals from Adam Cowan – ending any hopes of an Otago fightback.

Captain Ian Robinson, striker Dominic Rowe and Uruguayan substitute Gouzalo Nieres also got on the scoresheet as Manawatu warmed up to their trips away to O-League champions Waitakere United on Saturday and three-time defending NZFC champions Auckland City on December 8.

Rufer knows those matches will provide a clearer indication of Manawatu’s title credentials. Regardless of what happens, he is convinced his side is on track to contest the top-three playoffs again.

Trent Watson scrambles home the first half's only goal“What we must ensure is that we get points off our direct opponents. Auckland, Waitakere, Wellington and Hawke’s Bay…those are the teams we are going to be fighting it out for the top three places,” Rufer said after Manawatu’s “very pleasing” performance.

“We’ll be there or there abouts.”

Rufer is confident Manawatu will only get better after making short work of Terry Phelan’s young Otago squad.

“There are still a lot of players we’re learning about and that’s going to take a bit of time,” he said.

“But we’re on the right track. We were definitely a lot more patient with the ball today, we’re slowly shifting the ball a bit quicker like we use too and getting back a bit of form. It was good team performance.”

It doesn’t get any easier for winless Otago who host Hawke’s Bay United at Carisbrook on Saturday before a round six trip to Waikato FC on December 9.

Photos: Rowena Duncum.


Team Sheet

YoungHeart Manawatu

NZFC - Round 4, FMG Stadium


Otago United 

25 November 2007, 3:00

19. Michael Utting (GK)

1. Liam Little (GK)

4. Peni Finau

3. Terry Phelan

5. Trent Watson  (off 58)

5. Kevin Taylor

9. Osea Vakatalesau (off 72)

6. Terry Alvino

11. Ian Sandbrook

11. Andy Coburn

12. Nick Roydhouse (off 65)

12. Aaron Burgess

15. Prince Quansah

15. John Chisholm

16. Ian Robinson

17. Croyden Wheeler (off 58)

17. Dominic Rowe

18. Mike Smith

20. Adam Cowan

19. Richard Smith (off 58)

23. Scott Robson

21. Ben Keat (off 6)



1. Andrew Bailey (RGK)

2. Nick Dale

3. Pabo Yackson

7. Robbie Deeley (on 66)

7. Gouzalo Nieres  (on 72)

8. Michael Flaws (on 58)

8. Nathan Cooksley (on 58)

10. Bradley Scott (on 58)

21. Tim Richardson (on 65)

13. Callum Flaws (RGK)


=yellow card

=2 yellow cards

= red card


Play by Play

0 mins

Welcome to FMG stadium in Palmerston North, where the bottom two teams YoungHeart Manawatu and Otago United look to climb off the foot of the table. It's a beautiful day here - wer'e told the official temperature is 23 degrees but it feels much hotter than that, with just a gentle breeze blowing from end to end to offer any respite for the players.

5 mins

The pace of the game is brisk to start.

10 mins

Free kicks within shooting range to either side within the last couple of minutes have come to nothing with teh keepers saving comfortably

12 mins

The tempo is still high with the players putting in lots of running - we'll see if the heat takes it out of tehm as the game goes on

23 mins

GOAL!! 1-0 YoungHeart. A freekick out to the right is played in to the box by Ian Robinson. Liam Little comes to collect but spills it and Manawatu's Trent Watson is on hand to poke it goalward.

35 mins

YoungHeart are taking more control of this match - their possesion and territorial advantage leading to a swag of corners but Otago are managing to deal with them.

42 mins

Yellow Card for Trent Watson who tried to beat Liam Little to a cross but only ended up fouling the Otago stopper.

45 mins

HALFTIME: Manawatu have the advantage going into the break 1-0 up over Otago.

52 mins

GOAL!! 2-0 Adam Cowan doubles YoungHeart's lead, finishing in the top right hand corner after Dominic Rowe's shot had ricocheted off the left hand upright.

53 mins

GOAL!! 3-0 All Manawatu now, as Ian Robinson is set free inside the box and slams it home. 

56 mins

GOAL!! 4-0  Adam Cowan gets his second, again set up by Dominic Rowe.

60 mins

Substitutions: Otago - Michael Flaws and Brad Scott come on for Croydon Wheeler and Richard Smith.
Manawatu - Trent Watson is replaced by Nathan Cooksley.

64 mins

GOAL!!! It's 5-0.  Dominic Rowe gets on the scoresheet himself after setting up a couple. Drew the keeper and put it to his right.

68 mins

Substitution for Manawatu: Roydhuse replaced by Tim Richardson

69 mins

Substitution for Otago: Ben Keat replaced by Robbie Deeley 

73 mins

Substitution for Manawatu: Osea Vakatalesau comes off for Gouzalo Nieres can he get among the goalscoring action?

90 mins

GOAL!! Yes he can! 6-0.  A Gouzalo Nieres header finds the back of the net.

Fulltime - A comprensive victory for YoungHeart takes them temporarily into 4th place on the table. Meanwhile, a long trip for Otago just got longer.