Hawke's Bay United
NZFC - Round 11
Park Island, Napier
Sunday 1 February, 2009
Graham Fyfe 8 pen
Gustavo Saralegui 43,58
Halftime: 2-1 Referee: Anthony Reilly Crowd:
by Anendra Singh at Park Island
Hawke's Bay United came plummeting down to earth today after succumbing 3-2 to YoungHeart Manawatu in Napier.
The visitors' victory at Park Island saw them ascend to second place while the hosts slipped to the third rung, again showing the New Zealand Football Championship is wide open for the top-four playoffs.
Leaders Waitekere United have a monopoly on the top spot and should only concede their perch if players start turning up hung-over before each remaining five games for them.
The 5-2 win over Team Wellington the previous weekend became a distant memory from head coach Jonathan Gould's lads as they prepare for their home match against Auckland City on Friday and then away to Canterbury United at English Park, Christchurch, two days later.
While the sultry 36-degree temperature played its part in the game, it's the mental drain that Gould will have to work on to get the boys out of the mire after the squandered a 2-1 halftime lead built on the back of a stiff breeze in the first 45 minutes.
Said Gould: "How did we lose that game? You've got me thinking now. We probably conceded two very bad goals at the wrong time.
"(To lose a goal) just before halftime isn't a very good time. If we'd gotten in 2-nil at halftime it would have probably set us up in the right way."
He rued his side's inability to ride out a 20-minute spell in the second half, describing the 48th minute pile-driver from Cory Chettleburgh from about 45m out on the right flank that caught Bay goalkeeper Mitch O'Brien flat-footed in goal as a "fluke" for the equaliser.
Former Scottish international Gould felt a draw would have been a fairer result.
He didn't want to take away anything from YoungHeart, saying they played well and Bay needed to win to ensure the Park Island faithful returned for more.
"We didn't do it and two errors at least cost us a point."
With the Bay having won only one game at home to date this season - the first one on November 9 against Waikato - a frustrated Gould almost felt like resorting to putting his players on a coach in home games to create a false sense of feeling that they were travelling away to Park Island for their home games to turn the tide.
In defence of his side, Gould said: "If you look at other teams like Manawatu you'll find they also take away a lot of points from away games.
"We've just got to get over it and not make a psychological barrier because 2-0 up is no barrier. It's just a team in front of you and about maintaining discipline ..."
He impressed on the players at the breather the Team Wellington result but said the Bay boys couldn't emulate that effort.
Gould said Auckland had stuttered of late and probably opened the door for 4-5 teams to finish in the runners-up berth of the NZFC table.
"That's how we have to see it. If we can take a win through that fixture and take it to Canterbury and look for a result. Although we've said top four we can start looking at second place."
The Bay started off strongly with striker Leon Birnie rattling the crossbar in the 7th minute but a vociferous appeal a minute later for a handball in the 18m box off Solomon Islander Alick Maemae saw midfilder Graham Fyfe coolly slot the ball past a diving Chris Marsh in goal.
Seven minutes later Bay striker Seule Soromon turned a ball across the goalmouth but Birnie found himself sandwiched between two defenders.
But Vanuatu international Soromon found the net in the 20th minute, nodding the ball into the net after keeper Marsh parried a cornerkick to the far post as Bay led 2-nil.
In a break from tradition, players were allowed a drinks break between each half.
Manawatu skipper Raffaele de Gregorio tackle on Birnie from behind in the 27th minute took its toll as the Bay striker hobbled off the park three minutes later with Chris McIvor injecting some impetus.
The visitors took only one other decent shot at the Bay goalmouth in the 39th minute but former international centreback Che Bunce was equal to the occasion.
It wasn't until the 43rd minute that Uruguayan Gustavo Saralegui pulled one back to 2-1 after the Bay defenders failed to clear in a half that had four minutes added due to injury time.
But it was to the chance pot shot from Chettleburgh that proved to be a telling blow for the equaliser.
Suddenly YoungHeart's tails were up and Saralegui and striker Jason Hayne were creating havoc with darting runs working Bay keeper Mitchell O'Brien on his toes. In the 52nd minute O'Brien went down in a heap in an aerial challenge as the game ground to a halt for several minutes before the keeper resumed with his head bandaged.
Six minutes later former Bay player and golden boot prospect Hayne unleashed a shot from 22m out but O'Brien's parry found an unmarked Saralegui slotting the ball past the goalmouth melee for 3-2 lead.
Cracks started to appear in the Bay outfit with Korean midfilder Woo-Jae Kim copping a yellow card from referee Anthony Reilly after he and fellow Scottish midfilder Fyfe were deemed to have taken too long to execute an indirect free-kick. Eventually Kim pushed the ball, Fyfe dummied in front of the wall and Peverley shot wide from 30m out.
In the 61st Soromon had the crowd on their feet from the edge of 18m box but his shot beat Marsh and clipped left the upright to ricochet to a defender.
Bay toiled hard to salvage a draw but Manawatu's spoiling tactics only got the hosts' heckles up. Marsh also made a great save in the 87th minute.
Photos: John Cowpland www.alphapix.co.nz
Hawke's Bay United
Mitch O'Brien (GK)
Chris Marsh (GK)
Grieg Henslee (out 70)
Graham Fyfe (out 70)
Leon Birnie (out 35)
Raff de Gegorio (c)
Alick Maemae (out 75)
Reiner Bauerfeind (in 70)
Chris McIvor (in 35)
Isaac Duker (75)
Shaun Peta (RGK)
Andrew Abba (in 70)
Matt Boren (RGK)
=2 yellow cards
= red card
Wet blanket 36degC but a crisp wind has picked up and seen as leveller
HB kick-off with wind behind them
woo jae kim fires from 45m out but skews wide.
Alick Maemae fouls Chris Davies in box as Manawatu in first attack.
Leon Birnie hits crossbar and misses on rebound.
GOAL 1-0! penalty kick after maemae handles ball inside 18m box. Fyfe coolly places it right-hand bottom corner past diving Chris Marsh in goal.
Soromon cross but Birnie sluggish.
Soromon nods ball in after GK Chris Marsh parries ball from cornerkick, 2-0.
HB centreback Daniel Kirkup puts body on line to stop shot from point-blank inside 18m box but reels in agony after clutching bread basket.
Drinks break in extreme heat.
de Gregorio hacks Birnie from behind 28m out. Peverley butchers free-kick amid lack of patience with feeble effort.
Chris McIvor subs hobbling Birnie.
HB leftback Ian Hogg y-card for foul on Cory Chettleberg
centreback Che Bunce makes great save in only 2nd decent shot at goal from Reds.
GOALL!! Gustavo Saralegui pulls one back after Bay defence fail to clear. 2-1
4min injury time.
Saralegui uses Greig Henslee to clamber over but misses header
Cory Chettleburgh powers a drive from right flank 45m out and catches Mitch O'Brien in goal flat-footed. 2-all
Saralegui jabs from top of right-hand box but sails over.
Obrien goes down in a heap game stopped for several minutes. Head bandaged and he resumes.
Party time! Jason Hayne right flank from 22m out and O'Brien parries. Saralegui finishes off inside 18m box. Manwatu lead 3-2.
Woo Jae Kim cops y-card as he Fyfe discuss tactics to take kick. Eventuall Kim pushes past fyfe in front of wall and Peverley shoots wide from 30m out.
Soromn great opportunity from edge of 18m box but shot clips left upright and deflects to defender.
HB subs Reiner Bauerfiend for Greig Henslee and Andrew Abba for Fyfe.
Soromon appeals a freekick from acute angle for having gone over line but falls on deaf ears
Manawatu Alick Maemae clips upright from 20m out but within a minute Isaac Duker subs him as players take another drinks break in sizzling heat.
Peverley takes shot from 40m out when Andrew Abba free on left flank.
Bay defender Chris Davies yanks Manawatu midfielder by collar to ground after an earlier crude tackle on him by Haynes in box. Ref gives Davies y-card.
HB leftback Ian Hogg's hand clips ball in 18m box but penalty appeals fall on deaf ears.
Daniel Kirkup flicks through ball but GK Marsh makes great diving save as game heats up.
HB run out of time as Saralegui's spoiling tactics eat up time. Reds go home with 3 pts.