Archive for the 'Football' Category
Suso, Dani, And A Rare Ref Secure CD Tenerife Win

That Suso Santana has a lovely pair of heels, ask the Valladolid defence, they had fleeting glimpses of them in CD Tenerife’s home 1-0 win. While I’m dishing out admiration, how about Dani Hernandez hands, the home goalie defied the visitors with a series of classy saves. But special mention must go to referee Monesellio and his benevolent eyes, it was a clear sending off tackle for accident prone CDT defender Jorge after 20 minutes but the ref only showed a yellow card. His generous spirit not only saved us from surviving 70 minutes a man short but also restored some belief that we do sometimes get a lucky break.

From that pivotal moment, Tenerife grew beyond a poor first half to offer some encouraging play, especially from the transfer window young pups, Amath N’Diaye and Haythem Jouni. It was another changed starting line up, Inaki and Omar out injured, German dropped in place of Jorge, and Cristo Gonzalez confined to the dog house after more public petulance. Valladolid had the better of early play, Carlos Ruiz had to put in a winning tackle to stop a goal run from Mata. Dani rose majestically to snuff out a dangerous corner, and tipped aside another shot after a defensive mix up, and with that Jorge moment the storm seemed to have been weathered.

Camille did well at left back, not as adventurous going forward as Inaki he did a job, Marc Crosas sat in front of the central defence and broke up several moves. Senegal born Amath, on loan from Atletico Madrid, showed some genuine pace from the left of midfield but in the first half there was never quite the ball needed for Choco and Suso up front. We were resigned to a goal less break but in the final minute Suso picked out Carlos Ruiz from an in swinging corner to make the break through. Suso was back in the groove and at his inspiring, tireless best in the second half, two fine moves opened up the Valladolid defence, the second a free kick that stung the opposition goalies hands. Amath showed he could cut inside as well as romp down the wing, he was crudely blocked when at full steam, just before departing to a generous round of applause.

Jouini arrived from the bench, the young Tunisian striker soon showed what he has to offer. A genuine target man, tall and awkward, he gave the rest of the team a boost. It could have been a dream debut, drifting right with the ball he rushed his shot straight at the keeper. With five minutes to go Aaron Niguez replaced Aitor Sanz and took up a position to the left of midfield. There wasn’t much time to make an impact but the run out will help him to get a feel for the task ahead. Suso produced another half chance, hooking the ball just high of the goal from a tight angle before making way for Alex Garcia. The skipper deserved the ovation of the 7,785 crowd, even if the legs are feeling the years he has so much heart and a stubborn determination. The final word should have belonged to Choco, in injury time a long clearance found him deep, turning on the pace he outstripped two defenders but tried to score himself when a lay off was the better option. Still an important win and it marks Valladolid’s card for the Copa del Rey game at their place.

Uncomfortably Numb After Nano Bombshell

Laughing, singing, and guzzling Dorada. What a happy bunch the Armada Sur were before the first home league game v Sevilla Atletico. But then news began to filter through that La Laguna born Nano would not be returning from injury but would be leaving CD Tenerife to join Primera division Eibar for 3.2 million euros. Ninety minutes later heads were down but bottles still up after a poor 1-1 draw including 69 minutes with a man advantage.

There was some joy left to us pre game, Choco Lozano was back from Olympic duty with Honduras – albeit before racking up more air miles to return home for World Cup qualifiers. Cristo Gonzalez started as Choco’s strike partner but the first chance fell to Sevilla’s Matos who drilled his shot straight into Sani Hernandez waiting arms. Raul Camara made a strong interception to snuff out another attempt and his ball up to Cristo looked like setting up a home chance but he was crowded out by defenders. The last thing Tenerife needed was an unforced error but that’s what happened, Cotan couldn’t believe his luck when Jorge made a soft half attempt at a tackle that gifted the ball to the Sevilla player who placed it perfectly in the back of the home goal after 19 minutes.

Maybefate was going to even out, visiting striker Ivi forearmed Raul Camara over and then stamped on his leg, the red card couldn’t have come out of the refs pocket quick enough. There wasn’t any significant shift in the balance of play, Aitor Sanz recovered well to mop up his own mistake in losing the ball and Choco tested the Sevilla keeper but it remained 0-1 at half time. Choco put the ball the wrong side of the post just after the break and. Marc Crosas took over from Aitor Sanz adding his impressive distribution of the ball from midfield, Cristo had a couple of decent attempts but it wasn’t quite coming off. Choco gave us a sight of the gold medal when he slotted home a Cristo pass for a 67 minute leveler, surely the win would now come. Ale Pipo replaced Alex Garcia and despite looking a little out of his depth he gave plenty of effort.

Choco and Cristo worked hard to try to break the deadlock, Choco got up well to a high ball only to have it snatched away by an alert Soriano in the Sevilla goal. The keeper was willing to use any means possible to repel Tenerife, already booked he continued to blatantly waste time as the game went on, the ref resisted the urge to give him a deserved second yellow. Inaki did his late push on the left sending in teasing crosses and corners, Cristo in particular wasted a couple. The game fizzled out into a 1-1 draw leaving the 7,959 crowd praying that Nano’s transfer money is put to good use before the transfer window slams shut at the end of the month.

Tina And Bobby And Oxford City

When Rivelino introduced himself to me, before a CD Tenerife home game, I was staggered at how deeply he had drunk from the fountain of youth. Of course it wasn’t the 70 year old wizard from Brazil’s football giants of the 1970’s but Joe Roscoe who is playing the footballer in Tina and Bobby, the new three part ITV drama about Bobby Moore. It was enough to rouse memories of a surreal spell in the 1980-81 season when my non league team Oxford City were managed by Bobby Moore with Harry Redknapp as his assistant.

Let’s start in the present, Joe, a fashion and management student in Manchester works part time as a film extra and recently had a walk on part in Coronation Street. I was more impressed by his role in Tina And Bobby, and not just because Corrie cutie Michelle Keegan plays Tina. Lorne MacFadyen (ex Grantchester) plays the great man and filming for the football action has taken place at Leeds Rhinos Headingley Stadium. When we met there was still a fair bit of filming to go so keep an eye out for the programme over the next few months. Sadly they wont be covering the Oxford spell but it was quite a drama in itself.

How the hell did Bobby end up at Oxford City? A local businessman Tony Rosser had left the board of Oxford United, disgruntled that his plans were not being well received. Looking for a way to upstage the county’s senior team he ploughed money into my beloved City and made big promises of a major managerial appointment, even better than his word he unveiled Bobby Moore and my gob had never been so smacked. It was Bobby’s first move into coaching and City were a struggling side in the Isthmian League Division One .

Suddenly City were national media stars, everything became polished and professional, the team got their own luxury coach, left early, and had a light brunch stop at a posh hotel on away jaunts. Unlike the supporters rust bucket, they didn’t have a human chain to dish out coffee from an urn, or the pre ordered greasy chip supper for the trip home. It should have been a springboard to greatness but there were a few built in flaws. Bobby was a soccer god trying to teach mere mortals, and sadly some of his”friends” in the game took liberties by offloading misfit players on him. One of the first new boys was ex Tottenham defender Phil Beal, a legend in his time but now way past it, 1975 FA Cup Final left back John Fraser arrived from Fulham and tried to squeeze a few last drops out of his game, Stuart Haigh from Bradford City, and a clutch of Bournemouth players rolled in headed by goalie Kieran Baker, but he was soon replaced by Martin Le Blanc – who flew in from Jersey for games. How can I put it kindly, Martin wasn’t the safest pair of hands and soon became known to the fans as Martin Ker Plunk. Martin Chivers turned up to watch one away game, maybe to see his old Spurs team mate Phil Beal standing still.

Home crowds swelled a bit to over 1,000 and we delighted the rest of the league by boosting their attendances when City came to town. Bobby was always the focus of adoring fans and he was a true gent, taking time to sign autographs and talk to all his new best mates. Strangely the spotlight shifted slightly when City played at Clapton’s Old Spotted Dog ground, a short sprint from his old West Ham home. Harry Rednapp got more hero worship than his boss, his autograph flowed that day like signing a cheque book. Sadly it was all a bit of a mess, the constant changes made it impossible to create a winning team and Bobby’s role turned out to be part time as Mr Rosser used him more as a marketing and promotional attraction for his business interests.

It all came to a sorry end with relegation for City and a dreadful 5-1 defeat to Thame United in the Oxfordshire Senior Cup final. In those last few days Bobby was making the worst football film ever, Escape To Victory, with Michael Caine and Sylvester Stallone. Not surprisingly in the close season Bobby left the club, being at City was not really a fitting stage for such a great man but his dignity, enthusiasm, and all round decency impressed everyone who had the pleasure to come into contact with him.

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.


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.


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.


Sizzling Fun At Armada Sur Barbecue

We deserve a treat, it’s not always easy following CD Tenerife but the Armada Sur keep the faith with the help of good company and liberal amounts of Dorada. Thanks to a dedicated team of organizers we just had to roll up to Suters Bar in Parque La Reina and dive into a mountain of food and swim through lashings of beer.

The barbecue always attracts a few old friends that we don’t get to see that often and also we get some UK based fans flying in especially – come on where’s our award for services to tourism? The weather was just about spot on, a mix of passing cloud and sunshine, there were plenty of shades set up to make sure we were spoilt for comfort. As the beer flowed plenty of the old tales were rolled out for another airing, so many good memories over the years.

The get together also marks the countdown to the new season, at last definite news comes trough about pre season friendlies, player movement, and this year the build up to the Presidential election, a key point for our long term hopes. The new Armada Sur shirts made their debut as part of the membership package and were going like hot cakes, or hot burgers. Bob had a special surprise for The General, his own limited edition shirt with his name on the front, the comment on the back “Not Available For Away Games” drew some ironic cheers. The General’s record at away games has led to suggestions that he could be cursing our chances of more away wins.

The highlight of the afternoon is always the burning of the Pio (mascot of our yellow rivals), health and safety has made it more difficult in recent years as the damn things are mainly fire retardant. Even so, with plenty of vocal encouragement and prodding our two fluffy victims were dispatched to their rightful resting place. Back to the beer, our juggling Scottish waiter Bert nearly lost a tray of liquid refreshment but we discovered we have plenty of budding goalies who came to the rescue. We even got a visit from some hairy bikers, old friends of our, the hangovers were being booked by then, Armada Sur is a well oiled machine and I was certainly well oiled. It was a great afternoon and we are now refreshed and ready to follow our team on their wibbly wobbly road to destiny.