HBU’s Premier League is Underway: RHC Invicta 2 V 21 HBU RH & SC
RHC Invicta 2 – 21 HBU RH & SC
Date: 22.10.11: Time: 19.45: Location: The Bay Arena
Herne Bay United started their national premier league campaign against local rivals RHC Invicta on Saturday night. It was the first premier league game ever to be played at the new arena following the closure of the pier. United who lost their title last year wanted to hit the ground running this season. Invicta had already played away to the current champions Middlesbrough losing 17-6 so United knew what they had to do. In the opening exchanges Invicta were unlucky not to score with Captain Joe Fidoc hitting the post on 2 occasions, however 5 minutes into the game United pulled in front after a fine finish from Brendan Barker. (1st goal scored at the Arena). This was the start United wanted and the goal helped them settle down. 3 minutes later Neil Austin rifled home from close range to make it 0-2. Invicta were being put under pressure everytime they got possession but their defence held firm for the next 6 minutes. United were not to be stopped though, and 2 goals in a minute, from new signing Luciano Difeo and Barker put United 0-4 up. Despite Invicta continuing to battle United score 3 more in the half (Austin, Difeo & Danny Butcher (penalty)) to make the score 0-7 at halftime.
The second half saw United continue to dominate, a rash tackle by an Invicta player presented HBU with a penalty in the first 2 minutes, new signing Tom White stepped up and cooly slotted the ball into the top corner to make it 0-8. 20 seconds later HBU captain Simon Hosking scored from close range to make it 0-9. Invicta finally managed to get on the score sheet when Liam Holland scored with a first time shot from the edge of the box to make it 1-9 with 21 minutes remaining. Invicta’s goal was now under a constant barrage, Invicta’s keeper (Joel Carnell) was performing heroics in the net, making save after save. United though were not be denied, and in the next 15 minutes they scored 11 unanswered goals to make the score 1-21. The last goal of the game was to come with 15 seconds the clock when Rob Carnell score a well taken first time shot to make the final score 2-21.
After the game one of United’s summer signings Tom White said: “We played ok. It was a steady performance. Personally it’s great to get on the score sheet, but it was important that the team played well. The scoreline was not important to us, the manner of our team performance was what mattered. We didn’t play as well as we could have, we need to improve in defence and we didn’t take enough of our chances. That said we all enjoyed it, and we have gelled as a team and a squad. We will hopefully push on from here. We want to improve with every performance.”
Manager &Coach Phil McVey added: “I am happy with the win and the performance. We were professional throughout. At times we were very good in both defence & attack, but if I’m honest we could only sustain that level of play for 40 – 50% of the game. As the season progresses I will be looking for the team to increase that percentage up to 90-100%. I am very pleased with all the players, but especially with the 2 debutants Tom & Tati (Luciano), both have adapted well and fit into the way we play. One area of the game we definitely need to work on is our finishing. The stats showed that we had 103 shots on target in the whole game. Whilst Joel was excellent in goal for Invicta I would be expecting to score a higher percentage than 1 in 5 (20%). I think a reasonable percentage of goals to shots on target should be double that to 40%. We didn’t count the number of shots off target but it must have been at least 60. This season is an exciting season for us. There is competition for places in the whole squad. We are looking solid and we still have the likes of Joe Singleton and Richard Walker to come back into the side. Like most sports the game has changed, it is very much a squad game rather than a team game. To keep the level of intensity you need to maintain the level required to continue to improve and compete at the highest level, you need competition for places and you need rotate your squad. We have now set the bar for our team performance for the season. I will be looking for the team to raise the level of performance each game from here on in”.
Kings Fish Bar Man of the Match was Karl Smith.
HBU RH & SC next match at the Arena is Sunday 30th October at 11.30am v Letchworth.
HBU RH & SC Team: Jay Williamson, David Garlick (gks). Tom White (1), Karl Smith (4), Danny Butcher(1),Joel de Figueiredo, Simon Hosking capt(3),Neil Austin (3),Luciano Difeo (2),Brendan Barker (7).
RHC Invicta: Joel Carnell (gk),Joe Fidock capt, Matt Dalton, Alfie Sheppard, James Sheppard, Liam Holland (1), Joe King, Becca Lawrence, Rob Carnell (1).