CD Marino Launch Their Season With A Goal Feast Win

A killer instinct in the final minutes earned new CD Marino a convincing 4-2 home win over Tenisca to start the season with a home victory for new coach Toni Dumpierez. There were new ideas and new players but even with a five minute lapse that allowed the La Palma side to level, there was a growing confidence and plenty of promise for the Tercera campaign ahead.

Kevin Castro was as always a terrier as the main striker, he tried to exploit an early chance but the visiting keeper raced out to deny him. Bradley Mills overlapped well from the right back position to deliver a swift cross that flashed by Valiente as he raced in. Tenisca had their best chance after 15 minutes when their shot was scrambled away from just in front of the home goal line. Hammed tried a long shot for the blues that rose over the bar and then supplied a good pass to Valiente who had a hopeful penalty shout after being dispossessed in the box.

Kevin Castro gave the Tenisca plenty of uncomfortable moments, he forced a corner that Lolo Armario floated in just a little too high for a team mate to connect with. The opening goal came after 35 minutes, Valiente’s shot rebounded off the goalie and Lolo pounced to bury the ball in the net. Just before the break, home keeper Cicovic out jumped Ahmed to rob the ball off his head, that ensured a happy half time team talk, and it got better within two minutes of the restart. Ahmed fouled Kevin Plassencia in the penalty area to get a second booking and a sending off, Hammed converted the spot kick and Marino looked to be cruising.

Then came a nightmare few minutes for Marino, a free kick from Josua eluded the diving Cicovic to pull a goal back. A loose tackle on David gifted a penalty which Chema converted to level at 2-2, Kevin Castro missed a chance to restore the lead as a Josito cross came in, then the man advantage was wiped out after Bradley got a second booking for a rash tackle. This burst of bad news encouraged Tenisca but Marino stood firm and with Adan replacing Hammed they had new options up front.


There was a storming finish as Marino stepped up the pressure and put the visitors goal under siege, In the final minute of regular time Kevin Plasencia floated in a perfect free kick that beat the defence and goalie and nudged the home team back in front. Tenisca charged down the other end on an injury time breakaway but Josua found Cicovic on top form to deny his shot. There was still time for more drama, Marino sub Alberto hit a powerful strike to make it 4-2 and Cicovic made sure the final score stayed that way by blocking a last gasp Chema shot with his knees. Marino will take a lot of confidence from this encouraging performance and the character they showed after the Tenisca fightback.


More Cups Than Strikers For CD Tenerife

Like the pilgrims walking up the motorway to Candelaria, CD Tenerife coach Pep Marti is traveling with faith but needs a helping hand. This Copa Emmasa 1-0 home win over relegated Getafe showed that regardless of Nano’s injury and Choco’s Olympic football extension, a big new forward would be well handy before the August window closes.

Looking at striking alternatives, the coach started Omar in the central role with Ale Gonzalez and Suso supplying the ammunition from the flanks. Suso came close to grabbing a lead after 10 minutes with a shot from outside the area that tested the keeper. The game was pretty flat, Getafe were also tinkering with their squad and looked poor, the crowd was a mere 3,453, with most of the noise coming from Super Mario giving a concrete pillar a right old slapping. Aitor Sanz showed some initiative with a clever run that just failed to unlock the visiting defence, and Oriol was lively, putting a shot wide and setting up Omar who fired straight at the goalie. Falcon was hardly troubled in the Tenerife goal and the half time break left us hoping for more action.

A change of cast after the break saw Dani Hernandez back in goal, Ale Pipo for Raul Camara , Darixon for Ale Gonzalez, Marc Crosas for Vitolo, and Alberto for Carlos Ruiz, as well as some positional juggling. Crosas looped in a pinpoint ball to Suso’s head but he couldn’t bring it under control to launch a clean strike. Cristo Gonzalez took over from Suso and looked a bit keener than in the previous friendlies but it was Getafe who came closest with a shot that clipped the home bar.Cristo got into the groove and tried to hook the ball into the net, he wasn’t too far off target.

Getafe brought on a clutch of subs with barely 15 minutes left, they showed more urgency. With a penalty shoot out looming Cristo hit the winning goal after 88 minutes, thanks to a lovely pass from Darixon. Hopefully it will get the young striker back on track, a lot is resting on him. Nano watching from the sidelines leaning on crutches was a sad sight for the fans and a few hours later it emerged he is angling for a transfer out. Cordoba away will be a tough opener in the league, two pre season cups in the cabinet might look nice but league points are what really matters, it would be nicenot to have the usual slow start.








Red Mist At Night And Dani’s Delight As CD Tenerife Lift Copa Mahou

A flush of four red cards ignited the Canarian derby when a scathing tackle sent CD Tenerife’s Nano to hospital. A weak ref and some loose discipline made this the focal point of a 0-1 home defeat to Las Palmas but it was an absorbing game of real passion topped by a penalty shoot out win for CD Tenerife.

The fuse had been lit in the away leg, the Las Palmas coach fumed afterwards that Tenerife were over physical, Suso cranked it up before the home game by publically reminding the Pios there is no such thing as a friendly derby. The visitors looked sharp from the off, former Spurs and Portsmouth player Kevin Prince Boateng gave them a big presence up front, it took just four minutes for Michel to convert a neat pass from Viera on the right. The first half belonged to Las Palmas who stroked the ball about with confidence and looked a division above their hosts

Half chances encouraged Tenerife, Nano was lacking support on two promising breaks, and Omar saw his header glance off the post. After the break home coach Pep Marti made some changes, Inaki replaced Oriol and started to create some openings down the left. Just when it seemed the tide was turning, Aretcibia dived in with a two footed lunge from behind on Nano and as the young striker went down it was clear he was in agony. The red card for the offender was richly deserved but as players poured into the combat zone the ref dished out further reds for home player Vitolo and two more Las Palmas players. It was mainly pushing and shoving as tempers flared, the three additional expulsions barely deserved yellow cards.

That left Tenerife with a two man advantage for the final 30 minutes, it was worrying that they couldn’t make that tell. Inaki fed a good ball to Cristo Gonzalez whose shot was tipped aside by the yellows keeper. More changes saw Darixon and Younousse Diop paired up front, the combination showed a lot of potential, the speed and guile of the young Honduran and the power and strength of the Senegal youngster. The Las Palmas keeper helped his side to hold on with continual time wasting that earned him a booking. The 6,553 crowd, stoked up by the Pios tactics, gave full vent to their anger at the old enemy and their complaining coach Setien but Las Palmas survived and it was down to penalties to decide the trophy.

It was so good to have Dani Hernandez back between the sticks and once again he was the hero with two confident saves. Carlos Ruiz, Inaki, and Jorge struck their spot kicks straight and true to clinch the silverware. Overnight news from the hospital was better than first feared but Nano emerged with a splint on his leg and up to four weeks sidelined. On the same night Choco was scoring to put Honduras through to the knock out stages of the Olympic football, delaying his return from Rio. With just over a week to the league kick off, there are still plenty of problems for the coach to grapple with.


Late Goals Save Face For CD Tenerife

It was easy to feel the Ibarra goalies frustration, CD Tenerife didn’t trouble him for 70 minutes but bailed themselves out from a 2-0 deficit at Ibarra for an unconvincing 2-3 friendly win. The first half in particular was disjointed, aimless, and confused and not just because there were a lot of B team players filling in for injured seniors.

These warm up games are the perfect stage for the young rising players to get noticed, Bolaños had a shaky start at the back but settled well and Oscar Gonzalez played wide on the right and left before finding his groove in a more central role. Omar was playing as a central striker and it didn’t work that well, Cristo Gonzalez played behind him but did very little. The injured Nano was sorely missed, our striking options are a little worrying at the moment, with Southampton still keen on Nano, Cristo needs to raise his game this season to become a genuine contender for the next big thing.

Ibarra (in El Fraile) play in the same Segunda B section as CDT B and had most of the first half play, their 9th minute lead had a touch of good fortune about it as a shot deflected in off Adrian Garcia. Marc Crosas failed to shine apart from a good cross to Adrian who blasted well wide of the target. Less then 20 minutes gone and Tenerife were exposed down their left leaving Sandro to finish off from a probing cross. Two goals down at the break prompted a wave of changes for the second half. Angel Galvan took over in goal and was relieved to see a shot that beat him ruled as offside, Tenerife suffered the same fate a few minutes later. Camille slotted in at left back and looked strong and eager to support the breaks, it was a neat cross from him that fed Omar to pull a goal back after 70 minutes.

It was good to see Suso back on the pitch, he may be clocking up the birthdays but he is still full of fire and took great delight in crashing the ball into the goal to draw the scores level. Senegal born Younousse Diop arrived in Tenerife on a refugee boat with little more than his football talent to sustain him, last season he was loaned out after a poor pre season but he looked more determined after coming on in the second half. A hand in the build up for the 2nd goal was eclipsed by a superb finish to get a winner with just three minutes left. Maybe this will be his season to write another chapter in his incredible life story. Pre season games are notoriously poor indicators of league hopes, although this was hard to watch, it was a win and players and coach can learn as much from this below par display as from an easy goal fest.


Foot To The Pedal At Food Truck Festival

It felt a bit like being back in detention at school, there I was in the library but aching to get outside to play. Well maybe that’s stretching it, the Los Cristianos library is a daily call for me to check the local papers, the fun outside was due to run all day, and who says I was ever in detention at school? The Food Truck Festival did look alluring on the forecourt of the cultural centre, there were five trucks converted to serve specialist food and drink, two large bouncy castles, and a stage loaded with speakers, amps, and a microphone being given the old one two test.

Just after the official 12.30 start a special guest arrived to a big cheer from the army of children, Peppa Pig was out of the stye and in da house. The cute pink one needed a couple of minders to help him to the stage as young, and not so young, fans nuzzled up close to take selfies with the star. I was tempted to nudge Peppa towards the truck selling pork burgers to see if he would squeal but thought better of it. The trucks were already doing a good trade, I particularly liked the Dorada truck but the tequila truck was also proving to be a big shot with the nachos overflowing onto plates as a side order.

A range of activities were due to ebb and flow during the day, I returned in the evening but just missed The Beatles tribute band, the general response I got was the crowd had loved them – yeah yeah yeah. There was quite a sea of people lapping around the stage and out to the main road, the seating areas were full and the drinks were pouring at a steady rate. Queen were the next tribute act, a seasoned performer in local musical Rock Story made a struttingly enthusiastic Freddie Mercury and his band were impressive as they belted out the big hits like It’s A Kinda Magic, Radio Ga Ga, One Vision, and many more.

They, like The Beatles before them, did a full hour and most people thought that was it for the live music, I adjourned to the pub but got a call to pop back to enjoy a further act. This group started off with a selection of europop classics but showed their versatility with a rousing version of AC DC’s You Shook Me All Night Long. With the aid of a little alcohol, inhibitions were being thrown aside and there were a fair few more mature people digging deep to dredge up their dance moves. Inside the Auditorium there was a three group folklore show providing a different range of musical talents, both events were free, you have to hand it to Arona Ayuntamiento (council) they cater for a full range of tastes and nationalities.

High Praise For Santiago Del Teide

I wasn’t putting off my big walk down the Camino Real, just delaying the pleasure with a catch up around the small but delightful county town of Santiago Del Teide. I’ve arrived there before on the Titsa 460 bus from the south into near freezing conditions before the almond blossom walk but this time the digital readout above the chemist was shouting 35 degrees. A stroll through the back streets reassured me that civic pride was as strong as ever, the shrine to the local firemen outside the bomberos station had been spruced up since I last saw it a little overgrown.

But enough of skulking in cooler back streets, I was well overdue a trip up the Fuente de La Virgen de Lourdes, a short, steep trail through an ornate white archway and marked out with large white crosses. Pride of place at the top goes to a statue of Our Lady Of Lourdes, placed in a small cave next to an old spring in 1990. The walk up doesn’t take long but offers increasingly wonderful views over the small town. What a great way to spot the main influences in the history of Santiago del Teide, the pine forests, the lava fields, and even the new ring road bursting through the mountainside  tunnel.

The shrine at the top of the trail does attract visitors, floral tributes and candles surround the statue on the tiled floor, and wooden stools invite the weary climber to sit and contemplate. Outside there is an altar and a bell and it’s clear to see that the surrounding bushes and shrubs are kept in check by regular pruning. Clambering back down to the entrance bridge I felt ready for the days adventures ahead. You can read about my big Camino Real walk in Island Connections, out on Wednesday 3 August.


CD Tenerife Up And Running With Friendly Win At Las Zocas

Trying to match new faces and new squad numbers, looking for who has put on a few pounds, and feeling the buzz course through my body again. It must be pre season time and Las Zocas were the hosts for CD Tenerife’s opening 0-3 victory.

Pep Marti was beginning his first full campaign and only a few days in had been getting the players puffing with work outs in the hills, on Las Teresitas beach, and on the morning of this game, a full training ground session. Even so match fitness is another matter and some of our players were clearly not at full pace but there were lots of encouraging signs, most notably the first half display of Honduras 18 year old Darixon Vuelto. The under 17 international has arrived with an eye to playing for the B team but on this showing he could be hammering on the first team door. The sometime midfielder shared the main striking duties with Ale Gonzalez, another rising star, he took just over 20 minutes to grab his first goal from a short pass by German.

Las Zocas were restricted to a few chances, one long shot brought a good turn aside from goalie Angel Galvan. Omar Perdomo was another player who impressed, he forced the home keeper to make a smart save before latching onto a cross for a 36 minute goal. Marc Crosas looked strong in midfield and Camille looked solid at the back. There were wholesale changes at half time, Nano and Cristo Gonzalez took over up front but Las Zocas replacement keeper did well to block their best openings. Another sub, Oscar Gonzalez, brother of Ale, looked good as an attacking wide midfielder, both brothers made great strides with the B team last season after joining from Sporting San Jose and will fancy their chances of earning a senior shirt.

The floodlighting struggled to illuminate the second half, Carlos Ruiz put a strong header wide and Nano went close a few times before being bundled over in the box for a third goal from the spot. It was a good workout on the long road to the Segunda Division season, the Armada Sur were in good voice and the coach even had the players in a circle at the final whistle, stretching and warming down, they looked a little shell shocked by the extra exertions. There is still another new striker to sign and Choco Lozano to return from Honduras duty, the season tickets are cheaper than ever, and the after match beers slipped down nicely. Welcome back live football.


Art Meets Magic In Santa Cruz

Sat in a dark room watching a 1902 fantasy film and chuckling like a drain. Not how I had expected to start my art and culture trip to Santa Cruz but I wasn’t moaning. My how I chortled as a space rocket landed in the eye of the man in the moon! Maybe I should rewind a little before you think I’ve lost my marbles.

Georges Melies was a true genius, illusionist, director, magician, and producer, the French impresario loved fantasy and fables and combined them with horror, humour and ground breaking special effects to mesmerize audiences in his glass sided Paris theatre. The free exhibition La Magia Del Cine (Magic Of The Cinema) is filling the two floors of the Espacio Cultural at the Caja Canarias bank HQ in Santa Cruz until 15 October. It reveals the passion and dedication of Georges Melies with the help of drawings, sculptures, props, and film clips. The great man embraced all the new delights of his age like stroboscopes, magic lanterns, and shadow puppets, all enhanced by painstaking cutting of photos and film. Several of his short films were being played around the exhibition with the tinkling piano soundtracks adding to the atmosphere of the well staged halls. A Trip To The Moon is his most famous work and is still visually stunning, try to pop in to the exhibition, Monday to Friday 11 to 2 pm and 5 to 8 pm, or Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm.

Next call for me was the Summer Art Exhibition at Ciculo De Bellas Artes in Calle Castillo, the main shopping street near the port. It’s more about modern, cutting edge art here and this seasonal show features bright summer images, they even have some deck chairs so you can sit and contemplate the exhibits. All the works here are for sale, some are very small and manageable, they open week days 10 am to 8 pm, apart from August when they close at 2 pm, and this show goes on until 24 September with a 3 euro entry price or free if you have a residencia. Back outside I had a stroll around the sale filled shopping area, a quick dive down a few side streets rewarded me with some interesting graffiti art, part of an urban project called Submergete En Santa Cruz. Most of the settings for these wall drawings were a bit neglected and were cheered up no end by some artistic intervention.

I’ve always had a liking for strange art and one place I can guarantee strangeness that goes off the scale is El Tanque, the former giant oil tank between the bus station and the Auditorium. The first time I went they had a series of large Rank Film style gongs hanging from the high iron rafters and large fluffy cod ball type sticks to hit them with. The acoustics in the cavernous tank are eerie and the almost total darkness makes it a good setting for light shows such as the current show, Irradiacion De La Energia by Milton Becerra from Venezuela.

The darkness also makes it a rather difficult place to move around in, UK health and safety would have a hairy fit. I could see a couple of the large lighting projections as I tried not to trip over anything. There were a few other people in there, I made a pinging noise like a submarine sonar but they never responded, it was also sweltering hot. The free exhibition is on until 26 August, open Tuesday to Friday 5 to 8 pm, and Saturday 11 to 2 pm. It was almost a relief to get back outside and onto my air conditioned Titsa bus back to Los Cristianos.

CD Tenerife Paradise Postponed Not Lost For Pier Cherubino

Never one to shirk a tackle when playing for CD Tenerife, Pier Cherubinho is showing the same dogged determination in his quest to become President of the club he loves. Barring a late landslide of   share holder votes he looked certain to lose out to long serving rival Miguel Concepcion but was already planning a December challenge.

The 44 year old, born in Rome but raised in Puerto de la Cruz played 137 games for the blanquiazul and has been the fans choice in the election. Meeting with the Armada Sur and small share holders at the Gaelic Corner in Playa de Las Americas, he was signing up late pledges of support but warned it was a near impossible task as Concepcion has squeezed out every last favour and remaining loyalty from his backers. However the momentum gained by Pier in this campaign will drive him on to build towards a December challenge to cut short Concepcion’s planned five year extension.

Pier made a point of speaking to small groups among the large crowd and did well to get his message across to our Armada Sur contingent originating from the UK, Sweden, and Holland. Battling the live band next door he dismissed any suggestions of working with his rival as he felt it needed a new approach after the old regime had failed to change over 10 years in office. There was a clear passion about Pier and his willingness to come to see us echoed his view that the club has abandoned the south of the island. Another criticism was the clubs stance on dealing with only big sponsorships at the expense of many smaller companies that would like to get involved.

Tapping into local talent was another popular theme with Pier, he wants a squad of mainly locally raised players with just a few outside signings that can make a difference, not imports to just make up the numbers. The clubs coaching staff would also include many ex players passing on their passion for the shirt as well as expertise. Marketing would be cranked up with a local company lined up to explore opportunities all over Tenerife and involving promotions through the big hotel chains of the south. Even during this current election campaign the club has been forced to show signs of recognizing the fans longing for new ideas. However for Pier it doesn’t go far enough and he is ready to take this game into extra time to get the best result for the fans.


Tenerife Has A Passion For Fashion And Cars

It was enough to make Jeremy Clarkson and Chris Evans flip their bonnets, a multitude of cars spread over two parties. For me it was the fashion models at Parque Santiago 6 that revved my engine but for all who attended it was the overall glamour of a Saturday night in the west end of Los Cristianos that made it special.

The open air top tier of PS6 is the setting for regular promotional events but this was the most ambitious, a red carpet circuit around a central seating area was the focal point for the models to show off some of the outfits on sale at the centers shops. Before reaching that area there was a large display of classic cars from the Club de Amigos de Coches de Tenerife, and modern sleek styled motors from Mercedes, Porsche, Maserati to name drop but a few, all courtesy of Canary Cars. A cava and cocktail bar kept everyone fuelled up and the show was under starters orders.

A gleaming car heralded each pair of catwalk stars as they set out from their changing area. It was all about practical elegance at affordable prices for men as well as women. Full marks to all concerned, it was smooth and professional against the backdrop of the top floor shops. There were some quick changes going on and it was a very warm evening but they managed to look cool and chic. The music pumped up the mood and a commentary pointed prospective buyers towards the outlets where they could purchase their own slice of style.

On my way in I had noticed another party going on in the former pink supermarket just behind the ring road. It was the official opening night for Autostil Tenerife and more superstars of the luxury car scene spilled out onto the forecourt. They very kindly invited me in and what a transformation greeted me. There were two big open plan halls, one full of names like Rolls Royce, Alfa Romeo, and Bentley, linking to another hall with a stage and live band, and a raised bar area. It was banging in there with lights, music, and tasty snacks and a cooing admiration for the big guns of modern motoring. It was all a bit more glittering than my usual Saturday night with a few pints and a bag of pork scratchings.