Stallion Football Club and Green Archers United Football Club ended their 2016 United Football League first round campaign with a 1-1 draw yesterday (July 17, 2016; 1:45PM) at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.
Ashley Flores (49′) provided the goal for Stallions while Jhan Jhan Melliza (68′) scored for the Archers. The result left Stallions and Archers in 6th and 7th place with 20 points and 14 points respectively.
It proved to be a wasteful game for Stallions with the Archers perhaps grateful to to end up with a point. Archers goalie Henri Fong was forced to work early in the game when he parried away a Ruben Doctora header. Moments later, Fong made another save when he denied Carlo Polli’s attempt.
The Archers took a while to get going and it took a Melliza long-shot to test Stallions goalie Ref Cuaresma. That was very much the best chance for the Archers in the first half as Stallions relentlessly bombarded their defense. A mixture of last-ditch defending and wide shooting from Stallions allowed the Archers to get to half-time unscathed.
Stallions, though, finally got the goal that they deserved nearly as soon as the second half started. Flores latched on to a Joshua Beloya assist to open the scoring at the 49th minute. Ball possession then became Stallions’ property as they probed the Archers for more goals. Stallions had set-pieces cleared by the Archers and another Doctora attempt was cleared away by Fong.
Probably the brightest spark of the Archers was Melliza. The FEU standout had a sniff at goal cleared away by Cuaresma for a corner kick. Come the next sequence of play, however, Melliza finally put one past Cuaresma at the 68th minute to level the scores for the Archers.
Following the goal, Stallions pushed on for the game-winning goal. In contrast, the Archers waited for the chance to counterattack. All Stallions could muster, though, were two chances late into stoppage time. The ninety minutes were then up and Stallions were left to lament their missed chances.
At the end of the game, Stallions coach Ernie Nierras was an unhappy man. “Disappointed! We had so many chances on goals. So many chances!” He then added that the Archers’ goal was a mistake from one of his defenders. On the other hand, Archers coach Rodolfo Alicante was pleased with the result and said, “Medyo nag-improve na yung game namin sa midfield at sa forward line.”
In the day’s 7:30AM game, Nomads Sports Club defeated Pasargad FC 4-0 to end the first round at 9th place with 9 points. Stephen Appiah (42′ & 44′), Jon Aaron Nebreja (72′) and Juan Gonzales (78′) scored the goals of the game. On the other hand, Pasargad are still stuck as 12th place with 1 point.