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Football: SeyPearl Premier League St Michel bounce back, Red Star Defence Forces win at last | 02 November 2019

St Michel returned to the top of the SeyPearl Premier League standings with a very impressive 4-1 victory over Northern Dynamo at Stad Linite on Wednesday afternoon and on Thursday Red Star Defence Forces won their first league match as they came from behind to thrash Au Cap 9-1 with Malagasy Togo scoring four times and Seychelles striker Darrel Damoo netting a hat-trick.

 

St Michel bring down Northern Dynamo

 

St Michel started with veteran goalkeeper Nelson Sopha in goal due to the goalkeeping crisis and the 45-year-old who had last been in action over four years ago, was relieved in the 17th minute when Malagasy Patrick Rasaminana picked out his countryman Rajamana with a cross but the latter headed over from close range.

Anse Aux Pins-based St Michel, who had lost their unbeaten record last weekend, were the better team and in the 21st minute, Malagasy Francis should have hit the target from Evariste’s teasing corner but Northern Dynamo shot stopper Ricky Pool made a point blank save to deny him.

Dynamo then opened the scoring against the run of play in the 33rd minute when captain Basil Bertin’s cross was not cleared and it fell to Lucas Panayi at the far post and he thumped it past goalkeeper Sopha to make it 1-0.

St Michel though hit back straightway from a corner by Evariste in the 35th minute which was met by Nelson Laurence’s downward header which grazed the underside of the bar to cross the line for a 1-1 score.

In the 40th minute St Michel should have gone ahead from a throw-in by captain Alex Nibourette to Evariste who flashed a superb ball across the Dynamo goalmouth to Malagasy Oliver Livakely but he failed to direct the ball on target.

Dynamo then suffered a disruption to their defence when Ahmed Maurice was injured in the 44th minute and was replaced by Kevin Estico as this half ended on a 1-1 score.

St Michel took the lead in the 51st minute from a brilliant taken free kick by Livakely which hit the underside of the Dynamo crossbar before crossing the goal line to make it 2-1.

The players of coach Nigel Moustache were now in control and Livakely raced half the length of the pitch in the 69th minute when a Dynamo corner broke down and with Dynamo caught short at the back, Livakely shot wide when he should found the net or even better set up his unmarked colleague Francis as Dynamo rode their luck.

Dynamo almost leveled the score in the 71st minute from a beautiful volley by Aldo Dufresne from the edge of the penalty area but goalkeeper Sopha just managed to tip it over the crossbar and out of play.

A minute later, St Michel extended their advantage after some exquisite skills by Livakely who rode a couple of tackles to slip a pass to Norris Bibi who rifled the ball past goalkeeper Pool for a 3-1 scoreline.

Dynamo were out of sorts at the back and in the 79th minute, Francis pounced on a defensive error by Dino Clarisse to bore on goal but somehow he missed the target much to the amazement of the St Michel supporters.

Livakely rounded off a fantastic all-round performance in the 91st minute when he linked up with Francis to coolly lob goalkeeper Pool to make 4-1 the final score to bring Dynamo back to earth after their great win over St Louis last week, while St Michel bounced back with a very convincing victory and their captain Alex Nibourette was happy with the players’ response from last week’s shock loss to Revengers on Praslin.

“The players were conscious that we had to bounce back and even though we fell behind, we did not drop our guard as we attacked our opponents and we got our reward and we could even have scored more goals but the win keeps us in the title race and top of the league,” the St Michel skipper said.

 

Red Star Defence Forces win at last

 

Red Star Defence Forces won their first league match as they came from behind to thrash Au Cap 9-1 at Stad Linite on Thursday afternoon.

Au Cap broke the deadlock in the 4th minute from a mistake by goalkeeper Danny Larue as he gifted the ball to Jonas Baffoe who shot into an empty net for a 1-0 lead.

The army team though leveled the score in the 34th minute with a brilliant free kick by Malagasy Tojo for a 1-1 score and Tojo made it 2-1 in the 41st minute as he slotted home Darrel Damoo’s cross for a slender lead at half-time.

Damoo scored a third goal from a clearly offside position in the 49th minute for a 3-1 score and Tojo bagged his hat-trick in the 51st minute from a long ball over the Au Cap defence to make it 4-1.

In the 72nd minute, Damoo pounced on a defensive mistake to set up Marcus Maria who easily scored for a 5-1 lead.

Red Star Defence Forces though were reduced to 10 men in the 76th minute when Malagasy Clariel got his marching orders from referee Daio Landrie for his second yellow card.

Damoo got his brace in the 80th minute as he headed home Maria’s chipped pass to make it 6-1 and four minutes later, Tojo scored his fourth personal goal from Damoo’s pass (7-1) and Damoo set up Kieren Sinon in the 89th minute to make it 8-1 before Damoo grabbed his hat-trick in the 91st minute for a 9-1 final score.

Their manager Philip Barbe was happy with his team’s first win as he said he hoped this will be the turning point in their poor start to the season.

“It was important to win today to help us improve our position in the league,” said Red Star Defence Forces manager Barbé

As for Au Cap club president Nichol Dogley, he was disappointed with his players for their lack of commitment.

 

R. J-L.

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