Welcome back! The 2019 tournament got off to a frantic start on Sunday. Our defending champion FPLHints took a battering, Bells United got some redemption for manager Ross Bell and a couple of games went right to the wire. Now though it is time for groups A and B to join the party. I use the term party loosely.
I’m not just saying this to build tension, but group A is really hard to predict. From the previews, I decided Glipton Grasshoppers probably had the strongest team on offer. You’ll have to wait until Sunday to see them in action.
FC Garrincha vs Supernova Dragons
Chris Darwen is the veteran of the group, making his third appearance in a CM Cup. He’s spoken of a desire to improve his record but that was before he
misread didn’t read the draft rules correctly. If nothing else, he got his first choice defence.
He’s opted for the famous formation, it’s provided success for so many. It’s fair to say it being under the watchful gaze of Senor Chris will be it’s biggest test to date. Brian Laudrup and Ronald De Boer will shoulder the creative responsibility, but if anyone can, it’s them. Probably.
Guest blogger Supernova Dragon’s plans were immediately thwarted by an injury to John Curtis. That’s a blow to any team. It’s worth pointing out that Curtis’ injury won’t last as I have to load a new save every couple of matches.
With that, here’s the lineup. The original plan was to have Matthaus in the number 5 role but an injury to Neil Lennon has scuppered matters further. With that, Sutton is in at centre back and Simic has had to drop into centre back with Ricardinho playing left wing back. Crikey.
Tough one to call this. Here’s the video or the good old fashioned write up is below.
Garrincha started brightly, going ahead on 7 minutes when Morientes smartly finished a one on one – only a flag from the linesman meant that joy was short lived. Chris’ men had started brightly but out of nothing, a ball from Fernando was met by Tomlinson to give the away side the lead. Despite a lot of pressure, Garrincha struggled to hit the target and went in behind at the break.
Ostenstad and Sibierski arrived at half time and the Frenchman in particular made a big difference. Other than a couple of flurries from Supernova Dragons, it was all one way traffic in the search of an equaliser. David James was in tremendous form, having not stayed up all night playing video games, an excuse given after conceding soft goals in 1997. Two saves in injury time preserved the clean sheet and saw a disappointing end to the latest chapter in Chris’ CM Cup career. For SupernovaDragon though this was a superb smash and grab victory.
A victory for a stubborn defence. One shot on target, one goal, one win.
Both sides will be in action on Sunday when we next visit group A.
Plumstead Common Rangers vs Rostance Rovers
Ash Rose’s Plumstead Common Rangers (PCR from here on in, I’m not made of words) have an exciting mix of 90s legends. He took Holland to the semi finals last year but can he go one better this year?
With the lack of a right sided defender, Ash has played this logically and put Thuram there. To be fair, he played there in the 98 World Cup and was brilliant so what’s the worst that can happen? Okocha, Juninho, Bergkamp and Suker is a fine front 4 – though captain Marc Overmars misses out through injury.
Tom Rostance is making his playing debut having performed pundit duties last year. He’s got three good centre backs but Rob Lee misses this one through injury. Salas and Maurice is a wonderful front two. Let’s see how they get on in Tom’s 3-1-4-2.
Here’s the video, scroll down for words.
Ash quite rightly pointed out before this one that it was the battle of England’s reserve goalkeepers. Things couldn’t have got off to a better start for Tom – Thuram making a mockery of my suggestion that he’d be fine at right back as he gave the ball away and Salas ran through to score inside a minute. PCR recovered well though and a recurring theme throughout the half was the unlikely heading ability of Jay-Jay Okocha. It was from this route that PCR equalised, Davor Suker bundling in after Okocha’s initial effort was saved. A thoroughly even contest.
Rostance Rovers came out for the second half with the bit between their teeth. After a series of chances were created and squandered, David Platt set up Florian Maurice to give him a tap-in and give the away side the lead. That lead was short lived though as another set piece got PCR back into the match, this time it was Okocha scoring the goal after Bergkamp’s shot was parried. With the game open and both sides looking for a winner, the two managers made changes to try and swing the pendulum in their direction. With just 13 minutes to go, Davor Suker raced through on goal only to be fouled by the onrushing Tim Flowers. A penalty and a red card gave Suker the chance to convert past sub keeper Magnus Hedman for what turned out to be the winner.
A thoroughly entertaining encounter that Tom can class himself unlucky to lose. A draw would probably have been fair but Ash won’t care, he’s off to the perfect start.
Here’s the group after just one game. Far too early for any panic or celebrations.
We’ll be back with Group A on Sunday but not with Rostance Rovers, who have the round off.
This group is full of experience. Two guest bloggers, a former winner and the runners up from both 2017 and 2018. Everybody in this group has a reason to believe they can go far.
We’ll start with the 2018 runner up hosting the 2017 winner. Spicy.
Patrick Thistle vs Boca Seniors
Where to start here? Paddy (@90sfootball to you and I) has picked a team of Pat’s…you would think it would be poor but it’s actually quite good. Pat’s of the world unite. He’s opted for 4-2-3-1 and the success or failure here will be down to Patrick Kluivert…almost entirely.
Dan Williamson gave us some great memories as Chile manager last year but he’s got a stronger all round team here with Boca Seniors. It’s a frightening front four. Could he get back the trophy he won in 2017 (granted, it is a different trophy but don’t let details get in the way).
Here’s the match, words below.
The Pat’s were the latest team to be denied by a linesman’s flag, with Kluivert seeing a goal chalked off after just five minutes. Patricio Camps was the satr though, scoring twice in four minutes to put his side in charge. Kluivert added a third on 39 minutes but just as it looked like being a walk in the park for Patrick Thistle, Alfonso reduced the arrears on the stroke of half time. Crikey.
If you thought the first half was busy, prepare yourselves. Kluivert made it 4-1 just after the break to restore the three goal advantage. A quick response was needed and they got it thanks to Juan Antonio Pizzi on 54 minutes. Bizarrely, the arrival of Colin Hendry for the dire Evar Moas seemed to galvanise his team. Alfonso notched his second on 67 minutes before completing his hat-trick four minutes later. With the momentum all a wave of blue, the unlikely figure of Hendry smashed in from a free kick to complete the comeback. Alfonso got his fourth and Pizzi his second in the closing minutes as an 11 goal thriller came to a close.
7 shots out of 8 found their way past Lodewijks, which either points to poor goalkeeping or great finishing. Who knows which?
Good luck following that. We’ll next see Boca Seniors on Sunday whilst Paddy will be back on Thursday 13th.
Bayern Bru vs The Rookies
The short straw of having to follow that falls to Mark Carruthers’ Bayern Bru side and Andrew Chapman aka King of the Rooks. Mark was the beaten finalist in 2017 and was well placed with Brazil last summer before an injury to Ronaldo scuppered him somewhat.
He’s reunited with Ronaldo here and he is the centre piece of a frightening front 6. If they click, it will be difficult to stop.
If anyone can though, it might just be guest blogger King of the Rooks. He kept Barnsley in the Premier League so rule nothing out. He’s playing THE formation too.
For the final time today, here’s the video. The written report is below.
When I said good luck following the previous match, I didn’t mean it as a challenge. But these two decided defending wasn’t really on the agenda from the opening minutes. It was 2-1 after just 10 minutes – a quickfire double from Ronaldo and a reply from Vieri. That was as good as it got for a while though the The Rookies, two goals in two minutes on 20 minutes gave Bayern Bru a firm grip on this contest. Chapuisat and Rivaldo made it 4-1 before the unlikely figure of Gary Neville made it 5. Vieri scored what would surely be a consolation on 40 minutes to round off a truly ridiculous half.
The Rookies needed to take inspiration from Dan and the Boca Seniors comeback earlier and they did managed to get a third back when Svensson netted on 69 minutes. Despite having a lot more of the play, they couldn’t quite get the fourth goal that would have set up a grandstand finish and it was Bayern who took the points.
What a game. This group is going to be ridiculous.
With just two games played, this group has already seen 19 goals. That bodes well for the future.
That’s all for today. Groups C & D will be back in action on Thursday, please do join me then for the next batch of madness.