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Otago United

Team Wellington


NZFC - Round 15, Carisbrook
Sunday 24 February, 2008



Steve Gully 22
Graham Little 55, 59, 64
Luis Corrales 90+5



Halftime: 0 - 1                      Referee: Neil Fox (Auckland)                               Crowd: 


Little leads inspired Wellington

Graham Little's hat-trick led an inspired Wellington effort. Photo: Rab Smithby Rab Smith at Carisbrook

Otago’s perspiration was no match for Team Wellington’s inspiration as the Capital side ran amuck with a 5-nil win on the perfect green sward of Carisbrook.

Otago’s hope of pinching a result after only being beaten 1-nil by Wellington last time round, seemed on track as the local side pushed forward early at Carisbrook.

Jinking runs by Mike Eisenhut, and aggressive forays by Aaron Burgess and John Lang went close enough to threaten Phil Imray in the Wellington goal.

In fact Imray had to make a smart save at the base of his post when Burgess laced a powerful dipping volley in the fifth minute. Otago also enthusiastically claimed a couple of freekicks and corners that got the locals shouting.

Terry Phelan can't bear to watch. Photo: Rab SmithBut Carisbrook became Donneybrook when the Wellington machine took off its handbrake, and after a series of probing passes, Steve Gulley strode imperially across the penalty box before thumping a strong 22nd minute shot past keeper Nick Tarrant.

In torrid 30 degree conditions, Otago battled on and kept Wellington at bay until halftime, yet even those Otago stalwarts still wearing their woolen scarves, looked less than confident.

Phelan’s incendiary team talk produced another fiery start by Otago and Eisenhut’s trade mark long throw required Wellington to forsake style for safety as the ball was cleared into Row Z.

However Raf de Gregorio, Wiremu Patrick and Darren Cheriton took over in midfield, where they always seemed to have an extra player, and the masterclass began.

Otago had no answer to the darting, stop-start runs of Graham Little and the wee man stepped through sprawling tackles to score in the 55th, 59th and 64th minutes.

The hat-trick places him equal with Benji Totori in the Golden Boot race. Both have 10 goals, and counting….

Little skips past Nick Dale on his way to goal. Photo: Rab SmithIn the closing minutes another capital pinball attack caused sparks in Otago’s defence, despite yet another fine composed match from American centreback Kevin Taylor.

Poor Tarrant was like a cat on a hot tin roof as he reflexed to a series of shots that were blocked, but he could only spectate when Luis Corrales finally swept in Wellington’s fifth goal.

Although senior coach Stu Jacobs took time off to fly down from the Olympic training camp to observe his side’s form, it was assistant Charlie Howe who summed up Wellington’s effort.

“I think our senior players led the way today, in skill and effort. Graham Little obviously with his hat-trick, and steady matches by Darren Cheriton, Sean Douglas and Raf de Gregorio set a high standard,” said Howe.

Clearly disappointed after Otago’s recent improving form and bright start, United’s management saw little to commend in the match. Senior coach Terry Phelan refused to comment on his team’s performance.

Photos: Rab Smith


Team Sheet

Otago United


Team Wellington


2 Nick Dale

2 Sam Peters  (out 77)

5 Kevin Taylor

3 Steve Gulley (out 63)

6 Terry Alvino

6 Adam Birch

9 John Lang

13 Karl Whalen

10 Mick Eisenhut  (out 74)

14 Darren Cheriton

11 Andy Coburn

15 Graham Little 

12 Aaron Burgess (out 67)

16 Raf de Gregorio

15 John Chisholm  (out 77)

17 Wiremu Patrick

16 Jesse Malloy 

18 Peter Halstead  (out 55)

18 Mike Smith

19 Sean Douglas

22 Nick Tarrant (GK)

24 Phil Imray (GK)



7 Andy Pickering (in 74)

01 Sasha Nathu (GK)

8 Mike Flaws (in 67)

04 Jamie Farrington  (in 77)

19 Matt Stares  (in 77)

10 Luis Corrales  (in 63) 

21 Ben Keat

25 Rupert Ryan  (in 55)

13 Callum Flaws (GK)


=yellow card

=2 yellow cards

= red card


Play by Play

Good afternoon from sunny Dunedin. The weather today is stunning, lets hope the football is as good!! There are some vocal scarfies in the terrace, who are making up for the small crowd.


Otago has a handy free-kick just out of the box - which has lead to a corner


Corner easily cleared by Team Wellington.


Wiremu Patrick for Team Wellington had a handy chance out in front, but pushed it wide.


Otago free-kick, taken by John Chisholm, is easily saved by team Wellington keeper Phil Imray.


A promising attack by Otago, leading to some fancy foot work by Mike Eisenhut. Comfortably saved by the Team Wellington keeper Phil Imray.


Some patient passing and control by Team Wellington lead to a free-kick on the edge of the box. Accurate shot at goal by Team Wellington, just pushed over the bar by Otago Keeper Nick Tarrant.


GOAL. 1-0 after a period of messy play, Team Wellington create a shot opportunity for Steve Gully, which finds the back of the net.


An unnecessary illegal tackle by Otago's Jesse Malloy on the edge of the Team Wellington box earns him a yellow card, and Team Wellington a free kick - cleared easily by Otago.


Otago's first promising attack since Team Wellingtons goal gave Aaron Burgess a chance right in front of goal, but was called offside.


Despite enthusiastic chanting from the terrace, Wellingtion appear more confident and composed after their goal, giving them a slight upper hand.


A period of pressure from Team Wellington gives them a corner, taken by Darren Cheriton. Team Wellingtons attacking efforst were initially looked after by Otagos defensive duo Kevin Taylor and John Chisholm, finaly being cleared by the keeper Nick Tarrant.


HALF TIME: After an evenly fought first half Team Wellington lead 1-0 going into the break.


Otago has come out with the same amount of enthusiasum as they started the match with, having a great scoring opportunity off a huge Mike Eisenhut throw in - forcing a good save by Team Wellintion's keeper Phil Imray.


Unfortunate injury to Otago's Aaron Burgess him taken to the side, as Otago continue with 10 players.


Aaron Burgess returns to the game.


GOAL. 2-0 Team Wellington caught Otago napping, Graham Little finishing off well to give Team Wellington a 2 goal advantage.


Team Wellington continue to be hot on attack, stretching Otagos defence.


Substitute Team Wellington. OFF Peter Halstead. ON Rupert Ryan


GOAL. 3-0 Team Wellington establish a handy lead with another well executed goal by Graham Little.


GOAL. 4-0 Graham Little and Team Wellington are on fire, as Otago decides to self-destruct.


Substitute Team Wellington. OFF Steve Gulley. ON Luis Corrales


Substitute Otago.  OFF Aaron Burgess.  ON Mike Flaws


Team Wellington continue to dominate, creating a great opportunity for their strikers, shot missing just wide.


Substitute Otago. OFF Mike Eisenhut.  ON Andy Pickering.


Substitute Team Wellington.  OFF Sam Peters.  ON Jamie Farrington.Substitute Otago.  OFF John Chisholm.  ON Matt Stares


Team Wellington continue to be on attack, winning a promising corner. After much pressure Otago's keeper Nick Tarrant pulls off a spectacular save.


GOAL 5-0. Nice pressure created a one on one chance for Team Wellington which came off the post, rebound put in by Luis Corrales.

FINAL SCORE: Team Wellington won 5-0. After a promising start by Otago, Team Wellington took charge in the second half taking the win.