Football: Land Marine Cup-St Michel sink St Louis Suns


St Michel - St Louis Suns

This was always going to be the tie of the fourth round between two fierce rivals, but unfortunately for St Louis Suns, they were unable to field their two foreign imports – Congolese striker Jonathan Mbanze and Malagasy midfielder Gilles Rapiera – as the Seychelles Football Federation is yet to approve their transfer.

On the pitch, St Michel stunned St Louis Suns as early as the fourth minute when Gervais Waye-Hive floated a corner to Malagasy midfielder Jean Del’Or Tsaralaza and the former St Louis Suns player, who had been left unmarked, headed the ball  past goalkeeper Joel Lesperance to make it 1-0.

This goal rattled St Louis Suns who had fielded their strongest team and in the 16th minute Trevor Poiret combined with Mervin Mathiot but the latter shot weakly across goalkeeper Nelson Sopha’s goal.

After Wines Brutus’ 18th minute lob had sailed over the crossbar, Alex Nibourette’ fierce 24th minute shot was spilled by goalie Lesperance who saved at the second attempt
St Michel stretched their lead somewhat controversially in the 27th minute as Waye-Hive again left his marker in his wake but the ball seemed to have gone out of play and assistant referee Gilbert Lusta did not raise his flag. Waye-Hive therefore had all the time to centre in the penalty area to Nibourette who rifled the ball past Lesperance to make it 2-0 as the St Louis Suns defenders waited for the flag to go up.

Just past the half hour mark, St Louis Suns’ Kelly Nibourette and Mathiot were miles offside, which was not signaled by assistant referee Jason Damoo, but Mathiot failed to beat goalkeeper Sopha as he shot wide.

In the 33rd minute, St Louis Suns’ Fabien Cadeau latched onto a poor back pass but was stopped in this stride by a strong challenge by goalkeeper Sopha and there were half-hearted appeals for a penalty.

Ten minutes later, St Michel exploited St Louis Suns’ lack of speed in defence as Brutus burst through to glide past Damien Tamboo and centred to Tsaralaza who looked offside, which once again was not signaled by assistant referee Lusta. Tsaralaza side-footed the ball into the net for a 3-0 half-time score.

St Louis Suns threw caution to the wind in the second half in a desperate attempt to salvage the match and on the hour mark, Poiret cut inside Agathine and went down under his tackle but referee Bernard Camille was not convinced it was a penalty.

In a swift counter-attack, Brutus threaded a pass to Tsaralaza who looked odds on to complete his hat-trick but he blazed the ball over the bar.

In the 62nd minute, Cadeau tested Sopha with a well-worked curling free-kick which he tipped over.

Three minutes later, Waye-Hive collected the ball in an offside position to link up with Brutus who crossed to Nibourette who surprisingly shot wide when it looked easier to score.

In the 66th minute, St Louis Suns’ Mathiot held off the challenge of Nigel Freminot but he somehow failed to hit the target from a good scoring position.

Two minutes later, Waye-Hive countered quickly and his teasing cross fell to substitute Leeroy Corallie who had replaced two-goal hero Tsaralaza who had suffered a knock at the back of his head and was feeling dizzy. Corallie though miscued his shot in front of a gaping goal as St Louis Suns rode their luck.

In the 75th minute, St Louis Suns were controversially awarded a soft penalty as substitute Carlos Nourrice went down under the slightest challenge by Sopha in the St Michel penalty area and referee Camille pointed to the spot but did not even book the goalkeeper let alone send him off as he was the last defender. Jonathan Bibi stepped up to shoot low past Sopha to make it 1-3.

The goal spurred St Louis Suns and three minutes later captain Denis Barbé released Nourrice who raced on goal but Sopha was quick off his line to block his shot.

St Louis Suns’ only other chance to cut the deficit came in the 81st minute as Poiret exchanged passes with Cadeau who was set free on the left but he shot a decent chance in the side-netting.
St Michel will now play Anse Reunion in the quarterfinal.

Anse Reunion snatch victory from jaws of defeat

La Digue-based Anse Reunion clinched a dramatic 7-5 victory in a penalty shootout against St Roch on Friday.

St Roch were heading for a famous victory over Anse Reunion with only three minutes remaining with the Bel Ombre-based side leading 3-1. But a lapse of concentration changed the course of the game as Anse Reunion scored twice in two minutes to send the game into extra-time and the penalty shoot-out.

Anse Reunion’s Yelvanny Rose had given his team the lead in this pulsating match in the 24th minute (1-0).

However, St Roch created some good opportunities and finally levelled matters in the 41st minute as Denis Belle beat the Anse Reunion offside trap to lob goalkeeper Ricky Rose for a 1-1 half-time score.

St Roch almost took the lead three minutes in the second half as Roy Julie saw his goal-bound header pushed on to the post by goalkeeper Ricky Rose.

On the hour mark, St Roch’s Steven Télémaque floated a corner to Denis Belle but goalkeeper Ricky Rose saved the header.

Anse Reunion had a decent chance in the 70th minute as the impressive Hassan Ali released Nicolas Mussard but St Roch goalkeeper Julio Toulon stopped his shot at the near post.

St Roch took the lead seconds later from a long goal kick to Malagasy Freddy Armand who held the ball well to fire low past goalkeeper Ricky Rose for a 2-1 advantage.

In the 81st minute, Armand almost scored again with a curling shot but goalkeeper Rose was equal to the task.

Four minutes later St Roch stretched their lead as Dan Pharce’s cross was deflected by Anse Reunion defender Armantal Ernesta past his goalkeeper for a 3-1 lead.

Anse Reunion were heading for the exit but were given a life-line in the first minute of added time as Yelvanny Rose drilled a free-kick which goalkeeper Toulon spilled. Substitute Stenio Ernesta was on hand to punish the St Roch custodian to make it 2-3.

St Roch substitute Keddy Porice, who had replaced Brian Dorby and had given away the first free-kick which resulted in a goal, committed another bad error from the same position a minute later.

This time, the stylish Hassan Ali played the free-kick to Yelvanny Rose whose initial shot came off a defender but the burly striker thumped a strong shot into the far corner to level the score at 3-3 and the game had to go into extra-time.

In the 112th minute, St Roch were denied a penalty when Anse Reunion defender Evans Elizabeth handled in the penalty area but referee Nelson Emile turned a blind eye.

Six minutes later, St Roch’s Marvin Pierre bore forward and skipped past a couple of tackles to set up substitute Lovens Calva, but goalkeeper Rose did well to block his shot.

A minute later at the other end, Hassan Ali was awarded a free-kick on the edge of the penalty area but goalkeeper Toulon just managed to push the ball onto the post as the danger was eventually cleared and the two teams had to go to a penalty shootout.

Marvin Pierre gave St Roch the lead as he scored the first penalty but Hassan Ali equalised for Anse Reunion. Dan Pharce saw his spot kick saved by goalkeeper Rose and Yelvanny Rose fired past goalkeeper Toulon to give his team a 2-1 lead.

Denis Belle scored to make it 2-2 but Shaun Barbé restored Anse Reunion’s lead and Nestor Benahovy was then denied by goalkeeper Rose who blocked his shot. It was left to substitute Stenio Ernesta to score the fourth spot kick which goalkeeper Toulon got a touch but could not stop from crossing the line as Anse Reunion triumphed 4-2 and 7-5 on aggregate score.
St Roch have now lost their last eight consecutive matches.

R. J-L.