Croydon Kings kept their finals hopes well and truly alive after prevailing in a must win game against the in-form Adelaide United youth team on Saturday at Polonia Reserve.
Starting the day on the same points, both teams understood the importance of the game and it was Croydon who took the early initiative with the returning from suspension Antony Trimboli creating havoc on the right wing early on.
With the game only a few minutes old, a right wing cross found the unmarked Nathan Munro on the far post who couldn’t have placed his header better and gave the keeper no chance with his placement. 1-0 to Croydon!
The game took on a midfield battle soon after and Martinello, Heinke & Caraccia were particularly busy, whilst the defence looked well focussed.
Alas it took an ex-Croydon King (again) to stand up for United and this time it was Alhassan Toure who broke free and spanked a low drive in off the post for their equaliser.
1-1 as it remained at half time.
The second half saw Kings take control of possession and attack after attack were initially well nullified by the United defence although after some goal-line clearances and similar amazing near-misses, you sensed it might be another one of those days where we couldn’t quite nick the winner and have to accept yet another draw.
Some changes were made and as many started to look at their watches, another goal scramble following a corner where players were jumping up to win header just on the edge of the penalty area after some “volleyball type spikes” and players half-calling for fouls, the ball fell near Munro and this time his outstretched leg clipped the ball perfectly to land in the net and it was 2-1 Croydon.
The Kings deserved this lead and despite United changing to 3 at the back in an effort to risk all or nothing to find a later equaliser, the Kings kept their composure and almost could have snagged a couple more late ones themselves but were more than happy to get the final whistle at 2-1, thus keeping our quest for finals football on track, and any minor worries of potential relegation quashed once and for all.
Earlier in the day our U/18’s were no match for the top of the table NTC team going down 5-1, although the score probably didn’t reflect the balance of the game. They are still in the hunt for finals and have some promising and winnable fixtures coming up so let’s back Steve Pepper’s lads to get the job done!
The reserves continued their amazing form with a 3-0 win over AU reserves, and now look the goods even to take out the minor premiership. That said, before kick-off, it was noticeable that there were only 4 points separating top from seventh, so anything could still happen in this league, so interesting times ahead.
This week we are away to West Adelaide. This away fixture will be at Valo (Angle Park) and the new kick-off time of 5.30pm is to be noted. That said, the U/18’s and reserves will play their games at Polonia Reserve at 11am and 1pm respectively, so let’s pop down to Polonia first to cheer on our youngsters before heading off for the short trip to Angle Park where our seniors take on our traditional rivals who, despite having a horror patch of form at the moment, will be desperate for points in their quest to stay in the premier league, so we don’t want to let this one slip and need total focus and of course the usual boisterous Polonia support!
See you there!
Photo credit: Joe Janko