Saigon Raiders Club

Match Report – Raiders Vs. Nasty Vietnam

Raiders coming together nicely in time for the Ashes!

Clearly the prospect of putting one over on the Saints is proving to be a nice carrot to dangle in front of the players. Another huge sign up for the game meant some were left behind to reflect on their training performance or lack there of which meant they were not selected for the game.

16 Raiders made the trip along with newly installed manager Roche taking charge for his first game, although how long it lasts before he wants to go onto the pitch remains to be seen.

Schreiber followed up the selection of the starting eleven with another inspired pre match team talk. This time using Annakin Skywalker’s Pod Race in the Phantom Menace as inspiration for the Team – “live for the moment” was the underlying message despite the time it took him to get there. Sure enough it worked and the Raiders got the better of their nemesis “Sebulba” in what proved to be a bit of a stroll in the Thu Duc park against an unusually dirty Vietnamese Team.

Raiders were on the ascendency from the very first minute. With Mears and Andrist running the wings to great effect providing the strikers with chances to get into scoring positions.

In fact it was Andrist who opened the scoring with a curling effort from the edge of the box. Whether the keeper should have saved it or not is open to debate however it is encouraging that our new shoot more often policy is bearing fruit. Shortly after there were chances passed up to increase the score. Johnston put one just wide from the 12 yard area and Hepburn hit the post from the penalty spot. Sadly that was not to be the end of missed chances.

The next goal came from midfield again as Potter found himself in acres of space after the ball had been cleared by the defence, for once looked up, spotted the keeper out of position and deftly placed it into the empty net. 2-0 to the raiders and the locals looking less and less interested. In fact not one shot was registered on the Raiders Goal during the first half as the defence marshaled brilliantly by the increasingly vocal Moras held firm against a team that were running out of ideas.

Changes were being made regularly to keep players fresh and it finished at 2-0 to the Raiders at half time.

Not much to say at halftime as the game had been comfortable up to this point. More of the same as required. A few changes in personnel and out for the second half in the hope of scoring some more.

However it took some time for the next goal to appear. Chances being created but not being capitalized upon by both sides. The Local “keeper” was struggling to keep hold of anything as the Raiders peppered the goal. Hepburn and Paine combined to miss a glorious chance to make it 3-0 when both missed the ball from 3 yards out allowing the defence to clear.

Finally the raiders broke through with Johnston as always chasing lost causes in the corner, getting the better of the defender to square for Hepburn who managed to tap in from 6 yards just before being hacked down by the opposing defender. 3-0 Raiders, and a 4th was merely seconds away as Perez (who it should be noted had still not been booked) played some neat passing with Potter who found Johnston on the edge of the area. He duly held of his marker and slotted home to notch his third in 3 games.

And the Raiders were not finished yet. A goal mouth scramble which seemed to go on forever was finally ended when Paine found a bit of space to fire home from a few yards out, and marked his first goal for the club in over a year.

5-0 to the Raiders with 5 mins to go. However the clean sheet was not to be kept and the Raiders took their foot off the gas and a free kick was awarded to the opposition on the edge of the area. The opposing striker managed to evade the wall with his shot and it finished in the bottom corner beating the diving Vu who had replaced Moras.

So final score 5-1 to the Raiders.

Good performance by all and the team is gelling very well considering the number of players we are bringing to matches at the moment.

With one game to go before the Ashes match its time for those wanting to play to pull out all the stops for this weekends match against a side who should provide more of a challenge. Certainly there are plenty of players now capable of making a challenge for the starting line up and it will be interesting to see the numbers for training in the next two sessions.


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