The game against Grenades was scheduled for Saturday, February 17 at 7:00 pm at the ARG. The game was very important to us as we desperately needed to collect some points in order to escape the relegation zone. The warm-up seemed usual, except for the fact that there were some key players missing.
When the game started, our key striker Rakeem ‘Buty’ Joseph was not in the lineup. I assume that when he arrived to the grounds that the teams would already have been submitted to the officials. Jashine Lawrence, who received the man-of-the-match award after the game against Bullets, was not even on the bench. Twadedra Jacobs who usually come in on the left side of the midfield, was also absent from the game.
This must have put a damper on the other players, because as a former player of the game, nothing is more disheartening going into an extra-important game, than when you have your game all figured out, then to learn that one or more of your key player(s) will not be participating. I am sure that even the coach was affected by these events.
It was most evident when Grenades was able to score their first goal in the first twenty-one seconds of the game…..and what is even crazier than that is the fact that out of that twenty-one seconds, they only possessed the ball for a mere eight seconds before they scored.
The team tried to lift themselves above that but our keeper, ‘Spanny’ seemed to have had another off night when anything that gets pass the defense, which also realized that it was going to be a long night, was likely to end up in the back of the net.
The opponents were running hard with and without the ball and our midfield had a difficult time trying to contain them, making it seem as if they were able to do as they pleased. Our best chance came when # 3 Nigel ‘Froggy’ Sanderson was able to steal a ball and pushed it to the left wing where # 10, Nigel ‘Skinny’ Graham Jr made a wonderful cross on to the head of # 11 Rodney Lawrence who headed it over the bar.
Grenades kept the pressure up and they seemed to be a much fitter team than when we met them in the first half of the season, or they were just more determined to win than we were.
By the time it was half time we were down 2:0.
The second half came and we were bombarded with the runs from the Grenades. # 15 Mike France, got his first game of the season, but it was unfortunate for it to be a game which turned out like this. He was substituted in the early part of the second half for # 19 Nyque ‘Starty’ Watkins. Things even got worse for us after Sanderson was red-carded for kicking down a player and we were forced to play the remaining of the game with a man down.
The third goal came from a corner which ‘Spanny’ stood on his goal line and watched the ball cross him and fell to the feet of an opponent at the far post for a simple push in. That was crazy!!!!
With very little happening for us for the remainder of the game, it ended after they scored another goal to take the score to 4:0.