Slice of Cheese

Strikers cruise to victory over City

Devonport welcomed Launceston City to Valley Road on Saturday afternoon hoping to get their first win of the season and they did just that, winning 3-1 in convincing fashion.

The inclusion of Brayden Mann for his first start of the year was a welcome addition to Gallo’s Devonport side but they had to go about their business without their star recruit, Michael Holden.

From the first whistle Devonport really stamped their physical presence on the game, not allowing City to get comfortable on the ball whatsoever and giving away a few fouls in the process much to the chagrin of the Devonport faithful.

The Strikers didn’t have to wait long to break the deadlock though, in the 14th minute it was Tyler Fischer scoring his first goal for the club, bursting through from the right flank and unleashing a low rocket of a shot that beat City’s David Smith at his near post to put Devonport 1-0 ahead.

Soon enough on the 21st minute mark Devonport doubled their lead through an unlikely source, Dominic Smith for only his second senior goal. The tall defender read Wick’s lovely corner to the 6 yard box and made no mistake in bundling the ball home with his thigh to make it 2-0 to Devonport.

Devonport were cruising ,creating chance after chance and getting in and behind City at their leisure and could have made it 3-0 if not from a few timely interventions from Butler and Goold in the City backline.

However on the 31st minute mark Devonport perhaps relaxed a little too much, as a stray Millington back pass to Matt Zaikos had the Devonport keeper scrambling to try and keep the ball out. His efforts were in vain as the back pass was too well placed and there was no keeping it out to give City a possible lifeline back into this game by making it 2 – 1 in Devonport’s favour going into half time.

It just wasn’t to be City’s day however with Jarrod Linger on the receiving end of a stray ball from a Devonport substitute whilst walking out from the half time team talk, the ball sconning him on the head and in the process almost knocking him out, delaying the start of second half.

The return of Mann was never going to be complete until he scored and he got his goal in the 55th minute of the match. City turned the ball over in their defensive third allowing Wicks to run to the byline and whip a cross in from the left finding the run of Mann to the 6 yard box and the end product was never in doubt, Mann latching onto it and slotting it home to make it 3 – 1 to Devonport.

Mann almost got his second of the match but was denied by the near post this time as he was played through, shooting from a slight angle and under pressure from his opposing defender.

As the game came to a close both sides had opportunities to add to the score tally with Devonport looking the more likely through Mann and Andrews, while Mies went the closest for City shooting tamely at Zaikos.

The final score was 3 – 1 to the Strikers over City, a result that was never in doubt from Fischer’s goal in the 15th minute. It went all the Strikers way as they really took it up to City in every facet of the game, while City looked disjointed and a bit lost for answers on how to play it of their own half.

Chris Gallo from Devonport was pleased with the result while also playing down that his side still has work to do.

“Yes and no, some parts of our game was pleasing but also some parts weren’t, we’re not about winning up here it’s all about the performance of our side moving forward.”

The performance from City left coach Ben Brookfield scratching his head,

“Massive off day, total opposite of last week, didn’t play as a team, didn’t play as a unit, all over the shop and it showed.”

“Can’t really rest on it, I watched them (Clarence) last night they’re better than last year, so it’ll be a tough game and it’ll be good to get a win under our belt, hopefully and sort it out.”