Hello! After 10 days of group matches we’re now at the final eight. After today, the field will be halved as we’ll see all four quarter finals and move a step closer to crowning a 2019 champion.
Here’s the quarter final draw. The top team in each pairing will be at home – if it finishes a draw we’ll have a replay at the opposite ground.
Off we go then…
Glipton Grasshoppers vs Corinthian Collector
Sid came through strong in the final furlong to win Group A on goal difference. Honestly, I started that sentence with a view to making a load of horse racing jokes then remembered Grasshoppers aren’t really comparable to horses. Sid’s opted to switch things up, ditching 4-4-2 for the tried and trusted 2-3-1-2-2 that most of our quarter finalists will deploy. The switch is bad news for Legwinski and Fuser who make way for Paul Scholes and Martin Lauchlan.
Michael and his Corinthians only advanced on goal difference but can boast a 7-2 win which ultimately proved the decisive victory of their Group B campaign. He’s unchanged.
Let the games begin. The video is here, words below.
A very even first half saw chances for both sides but neither were able to break the deadlock. It looked all set to go in honours even at half time but on the stroke of the whistle, Alan Shearer continued his form from the last group game with a fine finish to tip the scales in Sid’s favour.
The second half was like two heavyweight boxers going toe to toe. Corinthian Collector were able to get back on level terms just four minutes into the second half as Robbie Fowler latched on to a flick from Clarence Seedorf to level things up. Their joy was short lived though as Batistuta combined with Shearer who made it 2-1 and then completed his hat-trick just six minutes later. If Glipton thought they could relax, Thierry Henry had other ideas as he reduced the arrears just a minute later. Despite a Corinthian onslaught, it would be Shearer who had the last laugh. Paul Scholes created the chance and the England skipper got his fourth of the match and his seventh of the tournament to finish the game as a contest.
Viktor Onopko played the perfect 10 whilst Taribo West just a five – bullied by big Al.
That’s Glipton into the Semi-finals, but who will they face?
Sporting Po-Taitos vs Criterion Club
Our Group C winner Rob Tait had only one blot on his copybook in making this stage but that came on the road. With home advantage, he will be a favourite to advance here. He has however opted to leave Leandro on the bench – he has five goals so far this tournament.
Matt Wills was staring at the exit door had Dan Barker managed to win his final match but instead opportunity knocks. Papin has 6 goals so far and will carry the hopes of Criterion Club here.
V I D E O.
Rob’s lads were at it from the off and took a fifth minute lead through Enrico Chiesa. Despite a couple of break away chances, it was mostly one way traffic and Matt will have been relieved to go in only one behind.
Criterion improved after the break and after Kopke denied Papin, Finidi was on hand to equalise and breathe life into the contest. That lasted six minutes before Chiesa netted his second of the game to put Rob back in front. Ibrahim Ba added a third but a nervy finish was set up when Papin slammed home a penalty following a handball. Despite that, Del Piero rounded things off with the fourth and decisive goal just two minutes from full time.
A game where both teams really went for it but Rob came out on top in the end.
Sid and Rob will face off in the semi finals, home advantage will be everything in that one.
Boca Seniors vs Rostance Rovers
Here he is. The Bielsa of CM, who started his tournament trailing 4-1 at half time. He came back to win 7-4. Our 2017 Champion Dan Williamson scored 20 goals in the group stages and will be looking to add to that tally here. Alfonso himself has 8 so far.
His opponent is Tom Rostance. His Rostance Rovers survived the Group A bun fight, his performances have been solid if unspectacular but very effective. Salas and Maurice have combined to great effect in victories so far.
Third video of the day:
This was a cagey affair, it seems Tom’s formation is quite good at neutralising the threat of the formation we know and love. It was 0-0 at half time in a fairly quiet first 45.
The second half was only marginally better, with Tim Flowers doing bits to keep the Rostance clean sheet whilst Rob Lee popped up at the other end with what turned out to be the winner. A shock result perhaps but Alfonso not scoring was the real surprise.
Rob Lee putting his name in Rostance history forever.
Will Tom face Ross or Dave in the semis?
Bells United vs Real Mathdrid
Ross Bell and his self titled United are the only team with a 100% record to date. His front line has been nothing short of lethal so far and Bakayoko is finally fit again.
Dave Mathieson required a final day victory for his Real Mathdrid side to advance, edging out the unlucky Exeter Gently in the process. He has been dealt a double injury blow u front as Djorkaeff and Bobic are out injured, so there’s been a re-shuffle up front and in midfield. Leonardo is also out to cause further selection headaches.
Final quarter final video…
What a match we had on our hands from as early as the second minute. Luis Enrique played Denilson through and although his shot was saved, Enrique himself followed up to put his side ahead. A quick equalsier was chalked off before Andreas Moller scored a legitimate goal and Hasselbaink made it 2-1. It looked like normal service for Bells had been restored but right on half time, Dario Hubner equalised to make it 2-2.
Ross went back in front thanks to Ariel Ortega’s 6th of the tournament just after the break but that set up a frantic finale. Both sides had chances to score but there were no further goals and Bells United came out 3-2 winners to advance to the semi finals.
A just about deserved victory for Ross but Dave was mightily unlucky to have three injuries to contend with.
Here’s the draw as it looks heading into Thursday’s semi finals:
Spine tingly dingly stuff. I’ll be back on Thursday then with those two semi finals and the whole tournament will end on Sunday. Toodles for now.
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