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Waikato FC

Canterbury United


NZFC - Week 11,
Centennial Park, 
Sunday 24 January, 2010


Che Bunce 26' pen




Halftime:    1-0                   Referee:            Peter O'Leary                    Crowd: 337


Waikato hand Dragons a reality check

by Matt Richens at Centennial Park

Waikato FC picked up just their second win of the New Zealand Football Championship and brought Canterbury United crashing back to reality.

After their 4-0 win over then leaders Waitakere United, Canterbury had all the fight of a wet sack as they lost 1-0 at Ngaruawahia’s Centernnial Park.

Waikato weren’t that great and Waikato player coach Che Bunce admitted as much, but they held on and now sit… well they’re still eighth in the eight-team competition.

“I think we’ve played better and lost, this season,” he said, “but we showed good fight.”

And they had to.

Canterbury threw a lot at their hosts in the last 15 minutes and when Waikato captain Shaun van Rooyen was dismissed in the 72nd minute for a second bookable offence, Waikato spent the last 18 minutes battling to hold on.

Bunce’s side had to work extra hard in the last stanza after making a habit of conceding late.

“When you haven’t won in a long time and you’re under the pump, it’s tough.”

Waikato’s goal came from the foot of their player coach who knocked in a 26th minute penalty.

Two Canterbury players were sprawled on the deck in their box, but referee Peter O’Leary decided one of them had brought down Michael Gwyther illegally and pointed to the spot.

Canterbury coach Keith Braithwaite wasn’t convinced the penalty should have been awarded, but said that hadn’t been the reason his team lost.

“They just wanted it more than us,” he said.

“We just didn’t turn up to the races today.”

When Bunce was asked what he thought of the penalty, his response was that of a far more relieved man.

“I think I hit it well, could have been a little more to the left I guess,” he said, beaming.

A win could have moved the Dragons up to third, but the loss gives their playoff hopes a big dent.

Neither team turned possession into scoring opportunities.

While Waikato looked pretty unimaginative playing long ball, at least they had a plan.

Canterbury just dinked the ball around and at times looked like they wanted someone else to do the work.

There was a sense, until Waikato scored, that Canterbury thought Waikato was just going to fall over and hand over the points and it was only when Bunce gave his side the lead that Canterbury showed any intensity and that was too little too late.

Braithwaite was clearly disappointed in his chargers, but said his tight-knit group were more than capable of bouncing back.

They play Hawke’s Bay United in Napier next week.

Bunce was wearing a smile after the game instead of his usual grimace and his ploy to stick with as many locals as possible – nine of the 14 players used are from the Waikato – had started to pay dividends.

Young keeper Alex Carr had a strong game for Waikato while Dragon’s midfielder Aaron Clapham seemed to be everywhere for the visitors and was their best.

Bunce had simple goals for this game. A clean sheet was all he was after and “anything else is just a bonus” he said last week.

Waikato are still last, but at least they’re within striking distance of getting off the bottom

They travel to Palmerston North next week to play YoungHeart, but will be without captain van Rooyen.

But they should get Dave Samson and Dan Peat back.


Team Sheet

Waikato FC


Canterbury United

1- Alex Carr (GK)

18- Tom Batty (GK)

2- Che Bunce

2- Dan Terris

3- Richard Beard

5- Matt Boyd

4- Charlie Hoyle

6- Andy Pitman  (60')

10- Mike Gwyther

7- Aaron Clapham

13- Shaun van Rooyen

9- Russell Kamo

16- Paul Stewart (60')

11- Tom Lancaster

17- Mark Jones (83')

15- Paul Dirou

19- Jeff Campbell

16- Daniel Burns

23- Alex Barlow

19- Darren Overton (78')

24- Maurie Wasi (74')

23- Jordan Swaney



26- Scott Robinson (GK)

12- Jordan Buchanan (GK)

7- Tewi Te Pou (83')

3- Jeremy Wild

8- Joe Simpkins (74')

12- Nick Wortelboer

9- Liam Phillips

17- Glen Collins (60')

11- Adam Wallis (60')

24- Sam Miles (78')


=yellow card

=2 yellow cards

= red card


Play by Play

-5' mins

Welcome to the internet version of football, not as much back chat to the referees and not quite as exciting as being here, but welcome nonetheless. I'm Matt Richens, it's about 13.4 degrees here, overcast and ready for bottom of the table Waikato are hosting Canterbury If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me on - keep them nice, I have a sore head. 

-2 mins

Team news, still no Gareth Rowe for Canterbury United, still having calf injuries and for Waikato, hardman Jason Chewins is a late withdrawl with illness - I hope it's not the same thing I have as mine is far more self inflicted. About to get underway here


Peter O'Leary gives his first stern warning of the day, last game at this level I watched his look after ended with 11 Yellows...


 lot of possession eary for the hosts, but not a lot coming from it. Gwyther and Wasi upo front for Waikato in their 4-4-2 in the absence of the suspended Dan Peat. Russell Kamo may be playing up front fro Canterbury by himself - surely not against the wooden spooners


Swaney gives away a freekick inside his own half and gets another talking to from O'Leary - freekick turned into a corner


Beard gets up high, but in traffic only gets a small piece of it and goes wide with a glancing header


Lancaster corner finds Kamo, but he too is off target, probably should have done better after he'd got away from his man


Waikato's new signing, Jeff Campbell has a poor first touch for his new side, gives the ball away inside his own half. oops. Still, big things expected from the former All White


Not a lot happening here. Both sides giving a lot of ball away, a few individual runs, but little else. Waikato haven't conceded yet, so that's good for them


A long range effort from Clapham, not very scary for Alex Carr. Paul Stewart follows it up with a limp effort of his own. 0-0 draw looks good here. Bunce did say he wanted a clean sheet and cared about little else


Waikato playing a lot of long ball and neither Gwyther nor Wasi are particularly quick so it's not working. They look better - as do Canterbury for that matter - when they take on players


Bouncy throw in left to get dangerously close to thwe Canterbury goal and Paul Stewart clashes hard with keeper Batty - colearly a foul, but good to see some fight


PENALTY! for Waikato...! scramble in the box and Gwyther was brought down dy a sprawled out defender... Bunce v Batty - Bunce to take...


  GOAL! Bunce goes to his left, Batty goes to his left. Easy goal. Well taken, high and left. 1-0 hosts.


Immediately Canterbury look like they've had a rocket... Far more intensity.


 YELLOW CARD to Charlie Hoyle for excessive shirt pulling/ shirt molesting and YELLOW CARD for Kamo for lashing out in return.


Waikato getting a few chances, getting to the top of the box, but no one is pulling the trigger. Waiting for another penalty perhaps? Haven't been able to shoot for some time. Looked good in the warm-up but.


YELLOW CARD to Shaun van Rooyen, nasty tackle, but looked more clumsy than mean


Andy Pitman goes very close to levelling it, just wide from close range in traffic to finish off a setpiece


Clapham makes Carr  do some work and the pair clash going for a ball on the ground, neat and brave work by the 16 year old there


and it's raining...  could be more cards. Waikato lost two in the slippery conditions last weekfor bad tackles.


Clapham hits from 45 metres... ambitious much? missed the target funnily enough. Poor option taking, usually the home side are better at that than their visitors


Just got an email reminder - thanks Glenview youth soccer - Auckland-Manukau 3, Waikato FC 1 - National Men's Youth League result from this morning


Oops, Carr scream's keepoer, comes out, but can't get around Kamo and feebly punches it away and he's a long way from his line, but it's cleared. Good that he's got the confidence to come, but just have to get there.


Paul Dirou just butchered a chance. Great, powerful freekick, low and hard found him on the corner of the six yard box but he hammers it over. He got up high enough, but couldn't control. Should have been 1-1. Waikato still woeful from setpieces


 YELLOW CARD for Andy Pitman, ran across the back of Mark Jones, but silly, no damage, but stopped a good run and was duely rewarded... by going into O'Leary's book


Pretty even tpo be honest. Both teams have struggled to convert possession to shots. Not the best football on show, but a good match and Waikato enjoy a rare lead.


Waikato FC 1, Canterbury United Dragons 0


Waikato need to play sensible here, and Canterbury will have chances so need to take one


How's this for keen, Canterbury fan Simon Rennell just emailed me, he's sitting at home in full Dragons' kit, the lot, watching it on the interweb. Good work Simon... pretty keen. But Simon's team still struggling a bit here, just can't break Waikato down - and not many teams have had trouble doing that, remember Waikato haven't had a clean sheet this season...


Waikato corner, Campbell to take. He hasn't done a lot individually, but has added a bit more presense in the midfield. Corner straight to BAtty who juggles but regathers


bit patchy, not a lot happening. A few big tackles and O'Leary looks itchy to show off his card again... but not yet. Waikato probably 65-35 in possession this half so far


Clapham freekick swoops in dangerously, but Carr comes out in traffic and does remarkably well to claim it.


SUBS Pitman for Collins and Wallis for Stewart


YELLOW CARD for Collins - not sure he'stoucherd the ball yet, but he got a piece of Wasi rather cynically to slow him down


Wallis puts a perfect ball through for Jones who hits first time with just the keeper to beat, but dribbles it straight at him. Where was the defence?


If Waikato want to put this beyond doubt they need to sub Wasi - I'm sure he's trying hard, but he's not quick enough to cause any problems. And Te Pou would be the perfect replacement


Ooooh this just got interesting. RED CARD to Shaun van Rooyen, He picked up a second YELLOW CARD after he was beaten and grabbed the shirt of a Canterbury player. 10 men, but winning, same as waht happened when Canterbury beat Waikato in Chch this season


SUB Wasi for Simpkins bit more defensive - Simpkins was in the centre of midfield before he was injured so will slot back there and Wisely, Waikato will just play one up front


Batty misjudges, ball bounces over hios head, Gwyther battles for it and crosses it in to Wallis, all still before Batty got back. Just as he did, Wallis went over


YELLOW CARD Richard Beard both he and Clapham appear injured


SUB Overton fro Miles - and Cantebury have a good shot Might have been Boyd from a cleared freekick, but it goes wide


Wallis could be a hero here for Waikato FC - absolute schmoozle in the box, Canterbury have four chances in about six seconds until Adam Wallis finally blocked away the last shot


from the resulting corner, Waikato nearly concede, Kamo heads wide... just.  All Canterbury here


SUB Tewi Te Pou on for the injured Mark Jones for Waikato


Dangerous Canterbury freekick, left to bounce and only partially cleared. Canterbury captain Dan Terris shoots from close range but couldn't control the bouncing ball


Clapham shoots wide. Waikato doing their best to lose this... they keep giving the ball away. Just hoof it down the other end and play down there! It's not a beauty pagent!


Canterbuyr still hot on attack... Hoyle down with cramp and Waikato are out of subs. Not enough salt. He's up


Four minutes times added on to be played. Waikato finally get a reprieve when Burns kicks the ball over the goalline - Waikato nearly clinch it at the other end. Diving header from Wallis, this kid looks good. Bounces past the keeper, but saved onthe line


Waikato still under the pump here... The Lion Brown will be on ice out here in Ngaruawahia if they hold on.


Waikato get some ball and play keep away


But that ends with a fumbled attack and a counter from Canterbury 40 seconds to go on my watch


FULLTIME - Waikato get just their second win of the season and Canterbury's playoff hopes take a big dent.


Waikato FC 1, Canterbury United 0 - More from me soon, I have a feeling Canterbury aren't happy with that penalty and they may have a case. Will see what they have to say. Glad i predicted a 1-0 win on the radio this morning and said get on the $2.80 for a win - Matt Richens