Round 3 saw the Kings return to Polonia Reserve for a HUGE clash against title favourites, Campbelltown City. With both teams at full strength, this was understandably the FFSA match of the round.
For the 2nd time this season, we paid tribute to another club legend… We all paused and remembered the late John Deptula, past chairman and Polonia man thru and thru. John’s grandkids led the players out and the Polonia faithful all stood silent to pay tribute to a man who has done so much for our club. May he rest in peace.
In what was a perfect day for football, the seniors hit the picturesque Polonia Reserve with the intent to remind the rest of the league WE are the defending champions and WE are the team to beat in 2018.
The first half saw a tight tussle between 2 very good teams. The Kings switched play as often as they could to catch the Campbelltown players off guard. The best chance of the 1st half fell to striker Nicolo Interieri, but his bottom corner crack was well saved by the Red Devils custodian. The teams hit the change rooms at half time with no score on the board.
The 2nd half began much like the 1st… a tight and contested match. Midway thru the half, coach Brazzale brought on star midfielder Rocky Visconte for the gut running Adrian D’Alfonso who had another solid game.
The change worked and just 5mins later, the magnificent forward pressure from the Kings saw Interieri win the ball just outside the 18 yard box, playing Paul Radice in on goal… and a well taken strike by “Deech” saw the back of the net shake as the ball crashed into it! The home crowd erupted as we knew our boys had the advantage and playing with more confidence.
Guy Miller was introduced in the 75th min for youngster Alhassan Toure to keep that midfield tight. Just 10 mins after scoring the games opening goal, striker Paul Radice was harshly given a second yellow card for “slowing down play”… a decision that can only be described as comical from the referee who performance was just that for the whole match.
Down to 10 men, The Croydon forwards, mids and defenders all worked tirelessly hard, chasing back and putting pressure on the Red Devils as they sniffed a chance to save a point. Brazzale then used his final change with defender of the year Hosine Bility coming on for the hard working James Skeffington in the 82nd min.
In what felt like an eternity (as well as more dubious refereeing decisions), the Kings held strong. A free kick for the visitors just outside the 18 yard box with seconds to go, had the crowd holding their breath… Up stepped goalkeeper of the year Nick “big mummy” Munro with a world class save off the boot of Campbelltown captain Iain Fyfe. The top corner effort was kept out by high flying Munro who not only ensured a clean sheet, but a win for the Croydon side!
A BRILLIANT display all over the ground by all players and a very well deserved win. Would have to name the entire squad on the “best on ground” list… couldn’t fault anyone! “HEJ POLONIA” was sung with gusto and pride in the rooms… making sure the opposition heard it loud and clear… WE MEAN BUSINESS IN 2018.
Unfortunately this was the only win for the home side from 4 games as the U18′s went down 2-0, the Reserves lost 2-1 and the senior Women started their season with a 5-0 loss.
We travel next week to struggling Birkalla, where we look to make this week count by pumping Birks at West Beach.
U18′s 2-0 loss
Reserves 2-1 loss
Senior Women 5-0 loss
Senior Men 1-0 win