Stallion FC brought their A-game on the field and sent Team Socceroo down, 4-0, in their second round face-off in the 2015 United Football League (UFL) Division 1 this evening at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Vito Cruz, Manila.
Stallion displayed dominance over the lowly Socceroo in the first half, gaining most of the possessions on their side by evading the defense set up by their counterparts. However, despite getting most of the possessions, clear goal attempts for Stallion were still hard to come by. Ruben Doctora, in the 13th minute, kicked out an attempt off a Jordan Mintah cross, but Socceroo goalkeeper Baba Sampana prevented the ball to meet the net and saved it.
Socceroo did the necessary adjustments also in the said half, going to the flanks that gave them good chances offensively. Despite the clear and close attempts from Michael Reyes and Justin Mengane in the 14th and 15th minute, Stallion goalie Johann Noetzel was able to save both. Fellow Stallion Mintah also had an attempt of his own, but his shot went too far in the 20th minute. Socceroo defended well this time, although Stallion gave them a hard time to set up.
Stallion finally bought a goal in the 28th minute, courtesy of Nathan Alquiros off an assist by Mintah to go up 1-nil. Doctora and Fitch Arboleda had good chances of swishing in goals in the 30th and 34th minutes, but it was Alquiros again who propelled Stallion 2-nil, thanks also to another Minta assist. Stallion dominated possession of the ball, and before the halftime whistle was blown, Mintah, from an Alquiros cross from the left side, converted a goal to end the half in their favor, 3-0.
It was almost the same story come the second half, with Stallion still getting the majority of possessions, disregarding their huge advantage. But this time around, numerous goal attempts were seen. Samuel Bonney had the first try in the 46th, while Levi Fernandez-Lynch and Mintah each had their own in the 49th. The sequence of attempts from their side only displayed Socceroo’s vulnerable defense that gave Stallion good chances.
Doctora, in the 59th minute, finally made his own goal as his shot from the left side off an Alquiros assist went past the goalkeeper to send Stallion up, 4-nil. The huge lead, however, did not let them rest on their laurels as they kept on pounding and tackling Socceroo for the ball with crisp passes and goal attempts. Socceroo still tried to score, but their goal attempts from Joao Reche Donha and John Navarro all missed its target. Stallion stacked up on defense to preserve the huge win.
Head Coach Ernie Nierras had nothing but positivity in his squad’s victory. “We got back on the right track, but we should still get our confidence back,” he stated. “We just have to continue improving,” Nierras added.
The win improved Stallion’s record to 8-0-4 win-draw-loss slate, while Socceroo dropped to 1-1-10.