On Saturday November 10th we played game nº4 of the Winter 2007-08 Lachine indoor league, vs. McKibbins Pub.
After a great start (6 points in 2 games), our season had come to a brutal halt with last week’s 2-3 defeat against El Ahly (Caffè Sorrento). If we we meant to have any serious contention at the champions title in Division 2, we rapidly needed to get back on track. Unfortunately as is often customary in difficult times, bad luck started to fu** with MISN.
Our opponents for the day were McKibbins Pub, which coincidentally was composed of the same players that Marco and Bruno played with over the summer in the Industrial league (ex-Procaps, ex-MyWebber). Their summer (outdoor) season had been close to catastrophic, their team lacking cohesion, team spirit, and teamwork. Indoor’s a whole different ball game though, a sour truth that our MISN players would have to swallow today.
Attendance-wise, once again MISN had a few problems, especially due to some last-minute cancellations (guys, time to stop with that BS please). Eric had some schoolwork to take care of, Santi and Bardia were N/A, and Kevin was away to Toronto. Also, two of what we thought would be regular strikers (Saad and Jonny) will probably be missing out the rest of the season (Jonny said he’s not interested in playing in Lachine anymore, and Saad has disappeared into thin air). Not cool.
To help us out this week, we enlisted the emergency services of Abbes. Danny was also back to play.
|1) Absent long-term:||Can, Ludo|
|2) Injured long-term:||Tevin, Alex|
|3) N/A this week:||Kevin, Eric, Bardia, Santi|
Here was our line-up:
We started the game in the worst possible way: by being late. A variety of factors combined for this one, so bear with me. First, yours truly had some trouble waking up which delayed the car pick up by at least 10 minutes. Then to make matters worse, we decided to take the 720 highway to feed into the 20, but the entrance was blocked. Stuck in traffic, we ended up taking a long detour, getting lost on the way, missing a few exits, and basically wasting a sh**load of time. Meanwhile, our other car (with Nafee, Abbes, and Jon) had fortunately taken a different route (the one Bus 191 usually takes, avoiding the 720) and thus avoided the detour. Still, they were 10 minutes late, which meant that as per Lachine Indoor rules we automatically started the game with a 0-2 scoreline. By the time our 2nd car arrived (Tevin, Marco, Güven, and Danny), our opponents had scored another goal to bring us to 0-3. Not the best way to start.
With a lot of courage, we finally had a full team on the field and worked towards getting those goals back. McKibbins didn’t make things easy however: contrary to their summer roster, these guys had a lot of energy and pace to give out on the field, and sure meant business. Combining with fast 1-2 touches, they created many problems to the MISN defense, and the fact none of us had time to warm up properly and get organized certainly wasn’t helping.
Still, we managed to pull one back about 20 minutes into the game. Marco took a kick-in close to the right corner, and waited for Güven to make a run in the box. Controlling the ball, our Turkish striker slammed a low shot past the keeper to turn the score to 1-3!
It wasn’t our day though. Our opponents were operating with fast counters thanks to their speedy strikers (their nº10 notably), overlapping well to create space. Their finishing left a little to be desired, but danger was constantly lurking close to Jan’s goal. Minutes before half-time, McKibbins obtained a free-kick close to the box, and one of their strikers sent a precise inswinging shot to the far post, where Jan couldn’t reach. 1-4.
In the 2nd half, we continued our attempts at approaching the net, but there was no velocity in our game. A combination of bad passes and good defensive interceptions from our opponents sent most of our chances down the drain, and even on set pieces our efficiency left a lot to be desired (efforts by Jon, Nafee or Danny being blocked by the wall or sent wide). The few times we took our time on free-kicks in order to spot a dangerous run from a teammate, we managed to create some chances. However, the ensuing shot were either parried away or off target.
Overall, there were really only two good chances in which we could have scored. The first, on a mis-judged defensive pass by the McKibbins keeper, intercepted by Marco who then tried to feed the ball to Güven for the tap-in, but Marco’s pass didn’t have enough power and the chance went begging. The second, late into the 2nd half, in which the ball took a serious of deflections inside the McKibbins box, and despite the repeated attempts of Güven and Bruno to slam it in, refused to cross the line for a goal. Obviously not enough to get the 3 points today.
Our opponents even had a few close chances of their own, sending the ball off the woodwork on 2-3 separate occasions, before our defense had the chance to clear. At the end of the day, we lost the game 1-2 on the field, to which the initial 0-2 scoreline has to be added. 1-4 final score.
1-4 final score
Another bad game guys. Aside from the pre-match logistical problems, we didn’t play well today. We rushed our passes, our movement on the field was insufficient, and our opponents generally played better. Despite that, and looking back at our summer season as well, many of the poor matches we played have a common factor: lack of preparation. One of these days, I’d really like to see everyone of us get to the field 15-20 minutes early, and warm up + stretch properly. I think many of us are underestimating how much preparation (both physical and psychological) can affect a game: today we were physically unprepared (no warm-up time) and psychologically, our morale took an early hit (starting from a 0-2 scoreline).
Today, the highway construction was an unexpected event, and eventually the reason why we were late. However, over the past year we have made it a general (bad) habit to get to the game only 5-10 minutes before kick-off (at best!), and personally, considering the way we’re currently playing, that is way too late. When things are bad everyone needs to make an effort to improve on our next performance, let’s start with proper match prep. Also, if you say you’re going to come to the game (you know who you are), please don’t pull a ‘last-minute cancellation’ stunt anymore. Otherwise we end up (like today) with only one substitute (and no time to call others), which is way NOT cool.
Cya next week.
Posted in MISN Impossible |