Multiple injuries and holidays resulted in the Vikings struggling to produce numbers for the game against ANZA but finally a 15 man strong squad was gathered. ANZA looked similarly challenged as they looked to only have one sub.
Starting lineup (4-4-2):
Jeppe / Kalle / Schoenne / Buck
Rafa / Morten E / Crouch / Crone
Dragsbaek / Stabell
Bench: Rahbek / Raven / Hax / US
The game started 20 minutes late as the ref firstly arrived late and then took his time to blow the starting whistle. The Vikings applied high pressure provoked ANZA to make mistakes. Vikings won a throw in and Dragsbaek called Rafa to run to the far post. Message received, Rafa ran, he saw the ball land at his feet, and then he missed the open shot on goal.
The pitch was rather small and it was difficult to find open spaces. The Vikings defense was solid but so was the one of ANZA. It was mostly from set piece situations that danger loomed. Another long throw from Dragsbaek could have resulted in a large chance but Crone did not follow through on the run.
Rafa was running around like a mad dog and after he won a ball on the right side he saw Stabell run into position on the edge of offside. Rafa launched a long cross towards the box but instead of bending onto Stabells head the ball went directly into the top of the net. 0-1 for the Vikings.
ANZA fought well and had a few good runs on the Vikings goal but the defense stood well and the few shots on goal went wide. The Vikings continued pressing and another set piece, again a long throw from Dragsbaek, was headed on goal by Crouch. The keeper blocked the shot but Hax was first over the second ball and with a touch, one that actually touched every part of the leg from the shin to the toe, the ball found the back of the net. 0-2 for the Vikings.
Second half continued in same fashion with the Vikings in control but ANZA slowly pushed the game into the Vikings half with help from their energetic midfield and attack. A couple of good through passes required for Poulsen to get off his line and secure the ball. ANZA also won a few well deserved free kicks but none led to goals. Their two tall defenders were a constant threat from corners but the Vikings did well to man mark them.
Dragsbaek looked fitter than ever, or else he just cut his beard, but at least he managed to win a ball, nutmeg a defender, and with a hard shot with the outside of the right foot made it 0-3 for the Vikings.
Water break and just 20 minutes to go. The job was simple; keep the clean sheet. Yet, we had one job and we f*cked it up.
A ball was lost on the midfield, ANZA made a precise pass down the left, the first shot on goal was blocked but the ball landed just outside the box. With the defense out of position an ANZA player was free to make a sweet first time finish into the top right corner of the goal. 1-3 and ANZA was all fire and flame.
A few minutes later an ANZA throw in was not cleared properly by defense and the ball was allowed into the box. An ANZA striker got to the ball first, made a change of direction, and Buck had unfortunately committed a clear penalty. Poulsen looked confident in goal but went to the wrong side. We had one job but the score line read 2-3 and the heat was on.
The last ten minutes saw the game flow back and forth. ANZA pressed high on the pitch but the Vikings had learned from the silly mistakes. Dragsbaek went back in from the bench and added some well needed power. On the bench Stabell was desperately looking at the watch arguing that the game must be over: “When is he going to blow the flute”?
After another few long throw ins from Dragsbaek the game was finally concluded. 2-3 was the final score.
6 votes: Poulsen
5 votes: Dragsbaek
Thank you to ANZA for the competitive game. Very impressive display of energy in the last 20.
The ref also did a decent job but we suggest he takes his afternoon nap a little earlier next time.