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Voodoo FC 2 Les Blues 2 (click for archive report) This was the sixth meeting between the two teams and the first under the new era of Voodoo FC. In the previous five encounters, Les Bleus and been beaten twice and have drawn three times. On this occasion they were certainly trying to end their hoodoo and attempt to score their first victory. After a typical start in the damp and windy conditions, both teams were looking to establish control. Voodoo started with a new strategy, employing a 4-5-1 formation, which seemed to unsettle them in the early exchanges as they tried to find their rhythm. After 15 minutes and with assistance from the wind, Les Blues took first blood. A corner taken on the left hand side swung in towards the goal, curled over the heads of all the Voodoo defense and as Chris Hughes came to receive, the wind took it threw his hands and in to the back of the net. As Voodoo tried to get back in to the game, their effort was not being matched by their cohesion. They looked disjoined and unbalanced and were continually being exposed through the middle, giving Les Bleus a growing optimism that this could be their day. Fortunately for Voodoo, Les Bleus were not able to capitalise during this period due to the Voodoo defense of Emsley, Hayward, Golding and Watson who prevented them from developing any serious threat on goal. As the match progressed, Voodoo began to gain more control of the ball but were still lacking the precision to create any clear chance. Finally, after wining a corner, the ball fell to Golding, who had advanced in the penalty area. He chested down to Simkiss, playing in an unfamiliar attcking role, standing inside the six yard box. He finished his opportunity reminiscent of the great ‘poacher’, Gary Lineker and stabbed the ball beyond the keeper to level the score before half time. In the second half, Voodoo were failing to find their passing game but still seemed to be taking control the hard way. Kinkade, who was promoted to captain for the day, seemed to lack his usual bite and uncharacteristically failed to hit the target when put through for a great chance on goal. Maybe it was the extra responsibility of captaining the side which disrupted his game or maybe it was his visitor, Dandy spice, who was watching from the shed end having made a surprise appearance to Tianma Stadium. However, Voodoo were slowly grinding their opposition down even if they weren’t doing it with any style. A shot from the right caused some disruption in the Les Blues defence and as the ball fell to KirkPatrick in the area, he was able to pass the ball home on the second attempt giving Voodoo the lead. It appeared that the game, although untidy, was wrapped up but a combination of Voodoo substitutions, French ‘joius de vive’ and misfortune, gave Les Blues a second bite at finally tipping the scales. Voodoo appeared to fall asleep and seemed to be thinking about a hot shower and Dr Howard’s therapy session in the Bamboo clubhouse. As Les Blues attacked, a ball through the Voodoo defense that had been bread and butter to the Voodoo sweeper all game, finally gave the French the break they had preyed for. As Chris Hughes came out to smother the ball, Golding’s attempt to clear it before it reached the penalty area, slipped under his boot. The contact took the ball away from the advancing Hughes and across the penalty area in to the path of several advancing white shirts who, unchallenged were able to steer the ball in to the empty net. This was a cruel blow to the Voodoo and the ageing star, who has been having a solid season, in what is rumored to be his retirement year. The French were thankful that he had finally put a foot wrong. The final ten minutes saw a late flurry from the envigoured Camembert’s who might well have taken the game and the points but for the inspired keeping of Hughes who saved two goal bound attempts pushing one on to the post. From a team that had been contained all morning, Les Blues finished the game on top and the Voodoo, who had arguably thrown away two more points, were fortunate not to be left empty handed. After the game Dr Howard commented. “Goldy (Golding) had a fantastic 89 minutes. His been very quiet in the dressing room and feels that he let us down with his mistake. He did keep a lot of other things out all game. We need to think about the overall fluidity of the team, the chances we never took and how to ensure our opposition don’t get given these opportunities again. We still remain unbeaten by Les Bleus.” Next week Voodoo take on the Latino’s. They have a week to put the wheels back on their wagon and show some consistency. Although their form so far has been erratic, they continue to occupy fourth slot and still have time to fulfil their potential. The board will be hoping that when they finally find their magic they will be able to hold a longer spell over their rivals. With only one third of the season gone and two cup competitions still to come they still have a lot to play for. For now, the ‘Les Blues hoodoo’ remains intact. Voodoo: DEFENSE. C. Hughes, Emsley, Golding, Hayward, Watson, MIDFIELD. Kirkpatrick, Lewis, Simkiss, Kinkade, Goodrick. STRIKERS. R. Hughes SUBS USED. Ji, Yap, Capes SUBS NOT USED. Peters Voodoo Man of the Match: Tim Ji (Les Blues never knew what he was going to produce) Steinlager Man of the Match: To be announced.
Voodoo 1 Krauts 3 No match report Voodoo Man of Match - Chris Golding
Bamboo Voodoo 2 FC Vlis 0 - (click for archive report) Voodoo were looking to get their championship campaign back on track against this seasons new boys of FC Vlis from Belgium after last weeks arguable loss of two points. FC Vlis adopted some unusal tactics by playing 4 front men and only two in midfield, looking for the long ball over the top of the Voodoo defence. This approach seemed to provide Voodoo with some problems and they were unable to get in to their stride of passing football. An unmemorable first half produced some reorganisation in midfield and up front for Voodoo and another goal for Rob Hughes to take the Voodoo in 1:0 half time. The second half was also more about commitment, tackles and tight marking rather than passing, moving and creating chances. Although FC Vlis were still looking dangerous for a quick break the defence of Emsley, Peters, Golding and Watson worked hard to keep them in check. Peters in particular playing his best game so far this season next to the seasoned Golding, who was playing sweeper to counter the long ball threat. It took the introduction of Voodoo trialist, Paul Lewis to snatch a second goal for Voodoo with a long looping lob. The kind that has often caught out the goalkeeping talent of David Seaman. From about 40 yards, Lewis saw the keeper off his line and after what looked like a hopeful high pass in to the box, the ball flew over the Vlis keeper and into the net producing the second goal breather for the Voodoo. Player manager, Sean Capes was able to make an appearence after his latest injury setback and was quick to make an impression. After two strong challenges, the second earning him a yellow card, he found himself put through the Vlis defence. This was the break through they had been looking for all afternoon after many attempts had been called disputebly offside. However, as the keeper raced out to close the angle, Capes slipped the ball pass him and towards an empty goal. As the crowd rose to their feet to cheer for a third, the ball cruelly hit the far post and was kicked away for a throw. This was the last effort in a match that was not an advert for the 'beautiful game'. "I was seriously going for goal" came the comment from Lewis. Capes added "It was great to see Paul score whether it was intended or not. It was also great to get back myself but im disappointed to have picked up a yellow and not scored. The most important thing is that we got the result." This wasnt a day for pretty football but Voodoo stuck to their task and produced a win. As we have seen from teams like Manchester United and the Shanghai Shooters, clubs that want to challenge need to bag the points even when they play badly or have even been outplayed. Its vital that they have been able to prove that they can roll up their sleeves, dig in and take all the points. It will be interesting to see if they can find their rythmn and play with passing flair and determined grit at the same time. Although they are still looking for this rythmn and have not yet found fourth gear, they still sit 4th in the league. With the next game coming up against the flambouyant French of 'Les Bleus', the Voodoo must strive for the form they promise. If they get it right, the should take the three points and maintain their French record. If they get it wrong, their league season will be difficult to revive and the French will record their first victory in 6 attempts. Either way, it will make an interesting contest. Man of the Match: To be announced
Voodoo FC 2 Vikings 2 (click for archive report) On a day when the Voodoo had virtually a full squad, a relaxed mood and maybe only one or two selection problems, the Vikings game plan was quite simple. Chase, press, pressurise and break up any Voodoo momentum. A plan they executed for the first 30 minutes to perfection while the sleepy Voodoo looked like they were still enjoying their morning coffee's and their expected 'walk in the park'. The early Viking pressure paid off when full back Watson tripped the Viking centre forward near the by line, just inside the box. The spot kick was buried, giving the Vikings a surprise early lead. Some reorganisation helped the Voodoo settle the maurauding Danish side and gave them the opportunity to equalise with a fine header from centre forward Rob Hughes following a well worked corner. The Voodoo's first half was marred when Brazialin striker Soares turned his knee, unchallenged, rupturing his ligamanet. Although this is likely to put him out for the rest of the year, it was not as bad as first feared when it looked as if he been hit by a sniper following threats after his recent international form at home. The second half saw the Voodoo play as they can and they controlled the game for long spells creating chances but failing to finish. Finally, Hughes once again popped up in the box and was able to calmly pass the ball the the left of the Viking keeper. The Vikings, who were still very much in the game due to their effort and commitment, were trying to get the ball forward early to their quick and skillfull chinese attacker whilst tightly defending chances created against them. Finally the Vikings Chinkster managed to pass the centrebacks, creating their first and only opportunity in open play before rounding the keeper and slipping the ball home to bring the game level. He continued to keep the Voodoo defense busy and centre half Golding was unfortunate to be carded for a strong challanged only seemingly designed to make the Chinese boy more aware of his presence. The Vikings continued to work tirelessly and pushed hard to frustrate the Voodoos play by breaking up everything with balls in to touch or fouls allowing them to regroup. The ball did end up in the Viking goal on two more occassions only for the play to be called back for disputable offside calls. Finally, a run in to the box from Voodoo's Irish international Kilpatrick brought a rash challenge and left the referee correctly pointing to the spot. The first three Voodoo penalty takers were on the bench so last weeks man of the match, Paul Simkiss stepped up. Unfortunately, he not only saw his first attempt blocked but also the rebound. This summed up the Voodoo day. Then, 10 minutes later, a through ball for Hughes to chase saw him one on one with the Viking keeper only to be brought down cynically from behind, producing a red card and only 10 Vikings left on the field. This did not help the Voodoo to break the defiant Danes who worked even harder for the final minutes. At the full time whistle, it would seem they had won the cup and a point whilst the disappointed Voodoo lost two more points. However, they knew they had been in a game. This was a great spectators match and good news for the SIFL that the Vikings can raise their game to push teams harder. What Voodoo needs to learn from this is to focus for every game and not to take any opposition to lighly. Head coach Sean Capes added "Overall it wasnt too bad after our early scares. We just need to have the killer touch around the goal to finish games like this one." Voodoo are still in fourth positon in the SIFL and next week face the Belgiums of FC Blis. An interesting test. Man Of the Match: Tim Ji (nominated by Vikings) Other notable results this weekend, Fulham beat Manchester United 3:1 at Old Trafford. Although this is a stumble for United, they are still likely to be pushing until the end of the season. We hope the same can be said for Voodoo.
Big Bamboo Voodoo 2 Oranjie 0 (click for archive report) The Voodoos’ season got back on track with an excellent two-nil win against the Dutch. It was a much changed team to that which had faced the Germans a week earlier. There were some worries on the way to the game as the team found that regular keeper Chris Hughes was not available and his replacement had been called away at the last moment, leaving the team without an experienced keeper. There was much debate as to who should take the gloves with no one feeling confident. The discussion continued all the way to the pitch where manager Sean Capes finally decided that Ben Peters would take the responsibility. The keepers instruction “just don’t let them shoot” was followed (almost) to the letter as the Voodoo put in an excellent defensive display, closing down the Dutch midfield at every opportunity. The central defensive pairing of Mark Suchy and Chris Golding looked strong and solid. Quickly the Voodoos midfield was creating opportunities with Paul Simkiss and Mark Kilpatrick moving the ball around well. By halftime the Voodoo were two up with goals from both of their central midfielders Simkiss and Kilpatrick. Kilparticks goal came from an excellent deep cross from the tireless Rob Hughes and Simkiss took his chance well. There could have been more goals with both Suchy and Golding going close from headers. Despite some considerable pressure at the start of the second half the Voodoo kept the Dutch at bay to secure their second clean sheet of the season. They failed however to add to their goal tally despite a couple of good openings. After a couple of good performances (and one not so good) the Voodoo must now be looking to create some consistency to maintain or improve on their current league position of 4’th. Man of the Match - Paul Simkiss