The Croydon Kings might be out of the cup following its 4-2 loss at Metro, but can hold their heads high after a gutsy effort that was only marred by some puzzling decisions by the officials in a game that otherwise had a bit of everything.
Goals, a few melees, controversy, yellow cards and one red which had the biggest impact when the score was anyone’s game at 2-2, featured through most of the clash.
Things started as expected with both teams testing each other out in a even battle. Croydon came close when a 30 metre pile-driver from Paul Radice hit the upright, but Metro struck back with a good early chance only to find Nick Munro with a finger tip save.
Similar to a couple of weeks ago, it took another controversial penalty award against the Kings to open the game up when Jarrod Brazzale was adjudged to have fouled a Metro player in the box, something only the referee seemed to have picked up. It was duly converted and Metro went into the half time sheds 1-0 up.
The second half started with Croydon in attack and it wasn’t long before they equalised when Paul Radice mesmorised the Metro defence with some clever footwork by the touchline and squared back an inch perfect pass for Rocky Visconte to slam home from 10 yards out.
Alas it was only a couple minutes later when a poor defensive clearance gave away possession and Metro restored their lead in an almost identical manner to Visconte’s equaliser.
The game then took some twist and turns with some off the ball incidents sparking the game up and when Metro’s Barbiero grabbed Nathan Farrell’s face on the ground after a tussle, with the linesman flagging to the referee, it was thought he would get his marching orders, but to our amazement, only a yellow card was issued to the culprit. Whilst this angered many from Croydon, it sparked them up and after earning a couple of corners, a perfect Visconte cross met a leaping Antoni Trimboli who headed home to make it 2-2. Some flying tackles and spot-fires on and off the ball ensued soon after as Croydon gained momentum, but yet again it took another big yet ludicrous decision to have Radice issued a second yellow(and thus a red) after he did little more than try and break up another minor melee in which again the instigator got away with nothing and the man down difference told when minutes later Metro regained their lead when a free player was on hand to smash home following a Metro foray into the Kings penalty area.
Despite coach Mark Brazzale throwing on some fresh legs which kept the Kings in the game with a go for broke attitude, it was to no avail and Metro added a fourth late on when the Kings looked spent after giving their all.
It’s a shame that Metro “infractions” were met with little or no punishment, yet Croydon seemed to cop the brunt of the referee’s inconsistency, and it pains me to say that its getting a bit too frequent that things always seem to go this way, especially against certain teams and sometimes at certain grounds.
The best way Croydon can redeem themselves is the fact they have only a week to wait to square things up, and they certainly won’t need any extra motivation when they line up again against Metro at home on Saturday, albeit without the now suspended Paul Radice. And hopefully we’ll have officials that can show consistency, something that has been lacking in recent times so we can at least have something that reflects fairness on the final scoreboard.

Women’s team cup match (courtesy Simon Kasperski) From the day of the draw, it was touted as the biggest mis-match of the season, as 2016 WNPL champions Metro UTD were drawn newcomers, and current Women’s State League cellar dwellers Croydon Kings.

Although the results were never really in doubt, the Croydon girls played with the Kings fighting spirit, and managed to disrupt the Metro game plan giving away nothing without a fight!
It was a day that showcased the heart of the Kings. In both reserves and seniors games, the girls played their guts out until the very last minute, and despite the loss, finished with their heads held high.
The manner in which they played, earned several applause and compliments from their highly rated opponents. The Croydon reserves were loudly applauded from the pitch by everybody watching, after finishing the game with just 8 players, and still never giving up!
Many thanks to Metro reserves coach Marchello Vilches for providing the extra linesman on our behalf, and for the heartfelt gesture to have a group photo with both teams intermixed!
A great day all round for SA women’s football.

Seniors: L 0-15
Reserves: L 0-19

From Tosh Deptula: The Amateurs at least had a win, against Adelaide Thunder, to the tune of 6-2. Well done lads and we hear that the big winner of the day apart from all the lovely mothers out there on Mothers Day, was the Vodka sales at the bar, post match of course!