Sunday, July 27, 2014

Peterborough 2 Brighton 1 - match report

Peterborough started off the game tearing into the Brighton defence with Kenneth Mc Evoy and Jon Taylor causing all sorts of problems down the wings. It was always clear though that with the soaring temperatures that they wouldn't be able to keep it going at this pace for the whole match. The other problem was that the players in the middle were finding it hard to convert the chances that the wide men were serving them up.

It was Brighton who broke the deadlock on though when Shamir Fenelon flicked a cross from Chris O'Grady through the legs of Ben Alnwick in Posh's goal. The rest of the first half saw Posh create the better chances with Casper Ankergen in the denying Conor Washington with a brilliant save and Britt Assombalonga coming close, but not close enough on several occasions.

Asombalonga picked himself up in the second half though and headed home from a Taylor corner early in the second half. Posh also introduced 9 new faces to the team and although the starting 11 was probably closer to the staring 11 when the new season kicks off they did seem to bring a fresh impetus to the proceedings.

The changes certainly did Posh a favour as they soon came up with a winner when Kane Ferdinand crossed the ball for Kane Vassell to slot the ball home.

It was a decent attacking performance by Posh, although at time the tempo dropped a bit due to the heat. Things are looking good for next season though

Peterborough 2 Brighton 1

Yesterday the hot preseason continued with Peterborough taking on Brighton at London Road. Here are a few photos from the game, a few more and match report to follow.

Peterborough push forward.

Posh get ready for a free kick.
The second half starts

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Ely City 2 Soham Town Rangers 2

Preseason continued with another game in the heat and another draw. It was a very new look Ely City that took to the field and they can be quite proud of their performance in what was a decent match.

Ely took the lead on 20 minutes when James Carmen lobbed the Soham goalkeeper to put the Robins in the lead. Ely had most of the chances in the first half, but Soham equalised before the half was up.

The second half was also keenly contested and Ely took the lead when a Soham defender put the ball in his own net. Unfortunately, the Robins weren't able to hold on for the win though, as a in the closing minutes a goal line scramble saw the visitors capitalise to make it 2-2 on the night.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Day 2 of the Absolute Sports Travel Cup

We didn't go to the second day of the tournament, but for the record West Ham won the trophy after beating Espanyol 4-2 and Shakhtar came second after beating Cambridge 3-2,

Cambridge United 2 Espanyol 2

The second game of the tournament was certainly action packed when a resilient Cambridge United took on a silky Espanyol side who liked to pass the ball around with some style.

The early chances in the game all fell to Espanyol who hit the woodwork 3 times. Not surprisingly with so much pressure the Spanish side took the lead on 27 minutes when Marc Gual slotted home. The lead was short lived though, as on 35 minutes Tom Elliot headed home to bring the home team back into the game.

Espanyol came close to taking the lead again when Ivan Sales beat half of the Cambridge team just before hitting the woodwork yet again, however despite all the chances it was still 1-1 when the teams went in at the break.

If the first half was all about Espanyol then the second half was all Cambridge. Just after half time Elliot doubled his and the U's tally by setting off down the wing and slotting the ball past Ruiz. Dunk was also causing Espanyol problems down the wing and Elliot was looking for his hat trick.

However, like the Shakhtar and West Ham game a raft of substitutes altered the flow of the game and Espanyol started to dominate again. In the final minute Pol Mikel Lirola ran down the flank and squared the ball to Martinez who slotted home.

A draw was probably a fair result in what was a very entertaining match.

West Ham United 0 Shakhtar Donetsk 0

The tournament started off with a young Shakhtar team taking on a young West Ham team. The temperature didn't help with the pace of the game, but there were still plenty of chances with the Hammers probably having the slight edge.

Kieran Sadler had the best chance of the game when his blasted shot rattled the Shakhtar crossbar. Artem Gabelok who came on as substitute for the Donetsk team also came close and looked lively in front of goal. Those chances did come though when West Ham had changed almost their entire team.

The first chance of the game fell to West Ham who came close to scoring through Elliot Lee after Seb Lleget had done the hard work, but Shakhtar keeper Yevhen Grytsenko was equal to the shot.

Shakhtar came back and came close from corner, which was expertly controlled by Rotislav Rusin who found Nikita Bezugliy in space, but he was unable to keep his shot on target.

In the first 10 minutes Blair Turgott tested Grytsenko again, but he was able to save with ease as he was another shot from Lee a few seconds after. Shakhtar then went up the other end and Valeriy Hryshyn had a great shot that Tim Brown did well to save.

On 36 minutes the Hammers hit the crossbar when Sadler finally beat Grytsenko. However, it was still 0-0 at half time, although both keepers and the crossbar were tested.

The Hammers started the second half on the front foot and Lleget, Turgott and Alex Pike all had chances before the hour mark. The Hammers then made 9 substitutes and lost the impetus with Shakhtar starting to push for the winner. The best chance came to Artem Grabelok with 12 minutes left. His shot stung the hands of Danny Boness, who was now in goals for the Hammers. However, neither team was able to grab a winner and the game finished 0-0

Sunday, July 20, 2014

A few photos from Cambridge United v Espanyol - Part 2

A few more photos from Cambridge's 2-2 draw with Espanyol 

Cambridge come close with a free kick.

The weather at times was hotter than the World Cup in Brazil, so you can't blame them for having a drinks break.

Cambridge come close again!

A few photos from Cambridge v Espanyol - part 1

The 2-2 draw between Cambridge and Espanyol was more entertaining. Here are a few photos from that game ahead of the reports. Photos are in two parts.

Teams shake hands ahead of the kick off.

Espanyol control the midfield early on.

Espanyol press forward.

Match action from Shakhtar 0 West Ham 0

A few photos from the game:

West Ham clear the ball. 

Some midfield action

West Ham come close

West Ham and Shakhtar line up

Shakhtar and West Ham's under 21 squads line up before playing out a 0-0 in the heat at the Abbey Stadium yesterday.

The bald fellow is Shakhtar coach Miguel Cardosa.

Shakhtar and West Ham warm up

With the temperature in excess of 30 degrees I am not sure if the young West Ham and Shakhtar players really had to warm up, but here are a few photos of them going through their paces before the game.

Absolute Sports Travel Cup

Yesterday we went to the first day of the Absolute Sports Travel Cup sat the Abbey Stadium in Cambridge. We saw Shakhtar draw 0-0 with West Ham and Cambridge draw 2-2 with Espanyol on what was and probably will be the hottest day of the year. Match reports will follow, but firstly I am going to upload a few photos. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Club focus - Espanyol

On Saturday the preseason gets underway with a little tournament in Cambridge where we will be watching West Ham take on Shakhtar Donetsk and Cambridge United v Espanyol. Both Shakhtar and Espanyol have featured heavily on the blog, so I thought that we would have a look at the Spanish club involved in the tournament.

Reial Club Deportiu Espanyol de Barcelona to give them their full name have always been in the shadows of their more illustrious neighbours and have been more of a draw for immigrants to Catalunya rather than the homogenous population. They currently play in the Estardi Cornelia El Prat, which holds 40,500 fans after moving there from the Olympic Stadium , which was built for the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona.

The club was originally formed in 1900 and was the first Spanish club to be formed solely by Spanish people. The club originally played in orange, as one of the founders owned a textile mill and had an abundance of orange material. They later changed to blue and white stripes as a homage to Admiral Roger de Lluria, who had blue and white on his shield.

They have never won La Liga, but have finished 3rd 4 times with the most recent 3rd place finish being in 1987. They have also won the Copa del Rey 4 times, but not since 1957. They have also reached the UEFA Cup final twice, losing to Bayer Leverkusen in 1988 and fellow Spaniards Sevilla in 2007.

They have had some players in the past who have moved on to bigger and better things including new Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino and Everton boss Roberto Martinez. Other notable names who have played there include Maxi Rodriguez, Pablo Zabaleta, Paulo Sousa and erm, Savo Milosevic.

They are currently managed by Sergio Gonzalez Soriano, who at 37 is one of the youngest managers in any of the top leagues in Europe.

They don't have a number 21 shirt after it was retired in respect to Daniel Jarque, their ex-centre half who died at the age of 26 in 2009, just one month after being named the club captain.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Tour De France

Today the Tour De France went through Cambridge, I wasn't planning on going to see it, but as it was a nice day and went fairly close to my place of work at lunch time, I went out and had a look.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

25 Most played bands of the first half of 2014

I have been pretty lazy this year and haven't put up any play lists, but here are the 25 bands that I have listened to the most over the first 6 months of 2014.

Top 25 first half 2014 by jim_bomb on Grooveshark

1 Arctic Monkeys - Brainstorm
2 Dutch Uncles - Flexxin
3 The Stone Roses - Fools Gold
4 The Orb - Perpetual Dawn
5 Ronni Size - Sound Advice
6 The Brian Jonestown Massacre - Food for Clouds
7 Boards of Canada - Chinnook
8 1990s - You Made me Like it
9 Modern Baseball - @chl03k
10 Fujiya & Miyagi - Knickerbocker
11 Beastie Boys - Sabotage
12 The Courteeners - Save Rosemary in Time
13 New Order - True Faith
14 We are Scientists - The Scenes is Dead
15 The Twang - Encouraging Signs
16 The Sunshine Underground - The Way it is
17 Thee Oh Sees - Maze Fancier
18 Underground Resistance - Sonic Destroyer
19 Blur - Charmless Man
20 The Fall - Mr Pharmacist
21 Echobelly - King of the Curb
22 Cage the Elephant - Shake me Down
23 Portugal. The Man - Creep in a T-shirt
24 The Verve - Sonnet
25 Mexico 70 - Best and Hurst

World Cup rest and a new season on the horizon

I've been busy watching the World Cup and not had time to write here. The bad news is that the World Cup will be over soon. The good news is that the football will be back with a few tasty preseason friendlies shortly after that.