Slice of Cheese

Devonport vs Zebras

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 Devonport
 Vs
 Zebras
 2
 Goals
 2
 3
 Shots On
 4
 3
 Shots Off
 6
 13
 Fouls
 10
 2
 Cheese
 1
 0
 Red
 0
 0
 Offsides
 0
 3
 Corners
7

FULL TIME DEVONPORT 2-2 HOBART ZEBRAS

A thoroughly entertaining afternoon of football and a point each probably a fair result. Both teams had good periods of pressure but neither really did enough to secure the win. Turning point for Zebras was Huigsloot going off injured. He was such a focal point in the air for their long range passes and that disappeared when he left. Devonport will be happy with how they responded after going down 1-0 at half time. Enough positives for both sides to take away and build on for the rest of the season.  

90+4′ Nervy moment at the end as Zaikos fumbles ball in the box after a long range Downes free kick but he has time to regather and no harm is done.

90+2′ SUB! THE KING IS ON! Chris Mckenna comes on for Argent who had only just come on himself. Curious move. Zebras have also made a switch, Degetto on for Lewis.

87′ SLICE OF CHEESE! Mckeown into the book for a rather crude challenge on Andrews.

86′ Shot off! Fischer drives one along the ground and wide of the post from long range after he found himself with plenty of space in the middle.

84′ SLICE OF CHEESE! Dance into the book for a shove on Mckeown.

81′ Into the final 10 minutes, the game has opened up with both sides trying to find a goal that could win it but both defences standing firm.

77′ Shot on! Holden powers a free kick from 30 yards out but it’s straight down the throat of Mercuri who saves comfortably.

77′ Sub-Jack Dance replaced by Luka Argent

75′ Shot off! Downes tries his luck from range after spying Zaikos off his line but his shot floats over the bar.

70′ Slice of Cheese! Smith into the book for Bringing down a surging Walsh just outside the area. Game swinging again with Zebras now back on top.

69′ GOAL 2-2! Mckeown again! Hey did superbly to put a cross into the box that was flat and at a perfect height for Mckeown who, who still had plenty to do, but he launched himself at it and glanced it home into the corner perfectly. 

65′ Game really being bogged down in the middle at the moment. Zebras have recomposed themselves and looked to drive for an equaliser but have lacked a creative spark in the final third.

60′ Another stoppage here with Imran Lewis staying down after a corner, is slowly back to his feet and should be right to continue but another injury is the last thing they need right now.

The Zebras have been caught napping coming out of the half time break, a few of their heads are still in the sheds it would seem. Devonport have lifted the intensity dramatically and taken Zebras by surprise. Looking a whole lot more lively than they did in the first half. Whatever Gallo said at the break has lit a fire under them.

52! GOAL! 2-1 Strikers! Now it’s Jesse Dance burying a chance! And the strikers have suddenly waltzed into the lead. He turns home a free that was played into the box from midfield.What a stunning turn of events here at Valley Road!

49′ GOAL! 1-1! Jack Dance drifts across into a pocket of space and buries a header home from the corner! Devonport had started brightly and the early pressure pays off!

46′ Second half is underway, no changes for either side.

On the balance of play you’d have to say a deserved goal for the Zebras. They were knocking on the door as the half wore on and it finally paid off. The Strikers have moved the ball well and had good structure but just lacked the polish that Zebras have had. 

HALF TIME- And that is the end of the half! Hobart Zebras 1-0 Devonport

44′ GOAL! Mckeown opens the scoring just before the half. Walsh played him in with a raking cross field pass, Sunday picked it up, ran into the box and drilled is past Zaikos at his near post!

38′ Sub- Huigsloot has not recovered from his knock, probably a precautionary concussion sub more than anything but he been replaced by Backhouse.

35′ Woodwork! Groenewold gets up well from a Downes corner but he smashes his header into the crossbar. Just inches away from opening the scoring there. Zebras well on top of this game at the moment.

32′ Stoppage here as Huigsloot smashes his head into the fencing after losing his footing trying to cross. He is back to his feet and hopefully he is right to continue because he has been a real force so far in this one, dominating in the air, just sitting in behind Sanders in the #10 role.

30′Shot off! Fischer blasts a shot over the bar when 1 on 1, opting for power but failing to keep it down after a delightful lobbed through ball from Wicks.

28′ Holes at the back here for Devonport but they hold on. Walsh surged down the right after a flick on from Huigsloot and his cross picks out Sanders, but Millington is on hand to block the shot.

27′ Almost redeems himself immediately, smashing a great drive across the face of goal after Downes released him on the left side of the box but a lunging Huigsloot can’t connect with it.

26′! What a Miss! Oh boy, of all people, Matt Sanders has missed a sitter there! Downes curled a free kick into the middle of the box, Zaikos came but didn’t clear his lines, it fell to Sanders with an empty net gaping and he blasted his volley over the bar.

New Zebras keeper Mercuri won’t ever be accused of not talking enough. He has been screaming at his defence all game and barking out the orders to keep them organised at the back. 

21′ Shot on! Sanders turns Millington and surges into the box, he crosses with his left to Huigsloot who doesn’t quite make clean contact with his shot, due to pressure from the defence and his effort goes straight at Zaikos.

15′ Woodwork! Henry Andrews finds a pocket of space and from 30 yards out he lets fly with a superb dipping shot that looked to have the keeper beat, not the woodwork though. It hits the post and goes over the top.

14′ Devonport break with blistering speed on the counter attack and have a 3v3 at the back but Fischer overcooks the pass and the chance dissipates.

12′ Groenewold goes down in the box turning under pressure but is told to get up by the referee. Zebras applying plenty of early pressure. The Strikers are pinned back very deep.

10′ Shot On! Downes opts to shoot from a free kick on a slight angle, Zaikos palms over with a regulation save. From the resulting corner Downes swings in, McKeown rises highest but heads it over the bar.

5′ Smith and Millington the new centre back pairing for the Strikers. Bidwell and Jack Dance the full backs. The Zebras have their two imports, Groenewold and Lewis playing together with Hey and Warrener flanking them for Zebras. Groenewold has the first real chance as he heads wide from a floating free kick sent to the back post from the middle of the pitch.

2′ Shot off! Bidwell misjudges a header and lets in Mckeown but his shot is well wide of the mark and no threat to Zaikos’s goal.

1′ Kick off! A perfect day for football here at Valley Road at the moment, the threat of rain but for now, fine conditions.

Welcome to Valley Road for this blockbuster NPL TAS clash between Devonport and Hobart Zebras. As well as being both sides first chance to claim points, their is added intrigue around this with former Strikers coach Peter Savill making his return to the ground that he enjoyed so much success on last year, now he returns trying to mastermind their downfall. A host of new faces in both of these squads, this should be a cracker of a contest, Andrew Cooling bringing it live to you.