The WaiBOP United Youth team recorded their first victory of the 2015 ASB Youth League season with a 3-2 win over Waitakere United at Oceania’s new football facility at Ngahue Reserve on Saturday afternoon. The match was played in extremely blustery conditions with a strong wind blowing down the length of the pitch.
It was WaiBOP’s turn to play into the wind during the first half and they had to adapt their football to the difficult conditions. Both the forwards and midfield pressed forward in numbers to put pressure on the Waitakere players when they were in possession. WaiBOP were often able to regain possession in their opponents half and Dylan Bull and Jonathan Viviani made several attacking runs.
Dylan Bull scored from one of these attacks when he drove the ball passed the Waitakere goal keeper from just outside the penalty box in the twelfth minute. This lead was short lived, as Waitakere’s Judd Baker was given too much time and space on the ball and he equalised just a minute later with a shot from about 20 yards. There were no more goals prior to halftime and WaiBOP were happy to start the second half with the wind at their backs and the match tied up at one all.
WaiBOP started the second half slowly and once again hesitant defending was to prove costly. Waitakere were being given too much freedom around the edge of the box and Jack Gusmeroli scored with a good shot in the 58th minute.
After the goal WaiBOP made a couple of attacking substitutions with Quinton Kipara and Paul Clout being introduced to the match. With these substitutions WaiBOP started to dominate play with several shots either being saved or going just wide of the goal.
The equaliser came with just eleven minutes to play when Jonathan Viviani headed in a goal from Quinton Kipara’s cross. Then in the 86th minute it was Viviani’s turn to reciprocate when he crossed the ball into Kipara for him to score the winning goal with a right footed shot. WaiBOP successfully saw out the match’s final four minutes plus five minutes of added time to gain a well deserved victory away from home.
After the match assistant coach Peter Davies said he was always confident that WaiBOP would win once they managed to get to halftime with the score tied at one a piece. He hoped that the victory would give his players confidence and instil a winning mentality for the rest of the season.
WaiBOP line-up: Ryan Watson; Bailey Webster, Nate Kinney, Casey Garner (Jacob Brown 81m), Luke Searle (Robbie Parakowhai-Gudex 90m); Jono Viviani, Xavier Pratt (Paul Clout 64m), Liam Hayes, Jacob Mechell (Quinton Kipara 57m); Dylan Bull, Blair Bates. Sub (not used): Bradley Rea.
Goals: Dylan Bull 12m, Jono Viviani 79m, Quinton Kipara 86m.
Words: Steven Built. Photo: Garry Konings.