Here we were, our final game in 2013 against a very good Hounds Dogs side and both teams were aiming to end the calendar year on a high note. The weather outside was frightful, another miserable December evening saw Boca drop more points before our very eyes. There were treats given out by some hard workers in the Boca family, treats given out on the pitch with some goals and bits of action being gifted to opposition players, I even got given a beer by a fellow fan, all in all, the Christmas feel was clear for all to see and feel. The game itself wasn’t the finest Boca performance, maybe the pressure of it being the last game in 2013 got to the lads a bit but we seemed to be off the pace a fair bit. We conceded our first goal a half hour into the game and recovered to level it at 1-1 10 minutes into the 2nd half. Just as we did that, we went and conceded another goal before Seb equalised to end it at 2-2.
The starting XI for this game was Phil, Sam, Eliy, Crawford, Nyall, Bear, Sols, Rick, Kow, Paul and Hamza. The game started very slowly for Boca and the Dawgs looked far more assured in possession. It took a keeper error for Boca to look somewhat threatening with Hamza chasing down a back pass which the keeps hit against Hamza but the ball flew wide. The Dawgs were controlling the ball and it needed a fine interception from Sam to stop a through ball successfully finding it’s target. Sols was making a nuisance of himself again (in a good way) and making defenders bounce off him with his bulldozing runs. One of those runs helped Hamza cross it into Paul whose shot came off the keeper for a corner. The Dawgs were floated crosses into the Boca box time and again, the offside flag was raised for one of their more creative crosses which was headed wide anyway. Finally their perseverance paid off as another long ball was sloppily dealt with by us and the Dawg was able to prod it past the onrushing Phil and we were behind. We continued to play a risky game as another deep free kick was played and we allowed them another free header but the flag was raised once again. Worrying signs for the fans in attendance, who were happily tucking into treats made by the Mrs Gaffer and her trusty helpers. There was all sorts of scrumptious treats which made most if not all of the fans forget the scoreline. The game continued though, and Bear was forced to limp off late in the first half to be replaced by the self-confessed ‘best left-footed player in Gibraltar’ Karlos. Just as the change was made, the half-time whistle blew and Boca trailed 1-0 at the break.
The 2nd half kicked off and Boca began brightly with Rick and Sene involved in a bit of action which saw Sene have a shot that went wide. Our control of the half almost came back to bite us in the bottom as the Dawgs had a long range shot which Phil saved and parried out to a striker who was 8 yards out, what followed was a piece of christmas joy, it wasn’t as bad as this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kiVq5-u7MH0 , but it was pretty bad. The Dawg skied his effort over wit only Phil to beat. The football gods were smiling down at us. Seb was then seen warming up after his return from the land of Oz, where he was watching the mauling the Australians were giving the English in the Ashes. Boca won a corner and Seb was brought on to replace Kow, he had an immediate impact on the game as the corner came in from our assist king el Rick, and one of their defenders headed into his own net for an OG. I just want reiterate that Seb wasnt that close to the defender but we’ll still give the gaffer his credit, good work!
Just as we started getting back into the game, the theme of the match reared its head again, we decided to give them a treat and abandon our control. They played a great ball in behind Nyall and their cross came in from the right, with several defenders not bothering to deal with it, the ball travelled to the opposite side of the box and their sitter misser smashed it into the bottom corner. A great finish but aided by some terrible defending. Nyall also got himself booked for something in the aftermath of the goal. Boca were up against it yet again and with the edible treats being finished in the stands, the fans’ frustrations grew.
That was before our tourist had anything to with it. Seb ran onto a chipped through ball from Rick and lofted a finish into the top corner over the keeper. Our Aussie hero was back and made an immediate impact. We were aiming to win the game now and hoping that momentum was with us but the Dawgs had other ideas. They carried on dominating the play and struck the post from a tight angle, Phil definitely had it covered…. We were let off the hook yet again as they had the ball in our net but it was correctly ruled out for offside. They then had another effort that struck the crossbar and rebounded off Pippo and landed at the Dawg player’s feet who shot wide. Boca were now hanging on. One of our stars went down with cramp which as we know is the worst pain ever but our very own Davey Montegriffo came up with an absolute corker: “Cramp is the worst pain in the world I swear. Worse than child birth for sure.” The players must have heard this comment as well as the game began to get very scrappy and before long, the full time whistle blew. It was a 2-2 draw which was a fair result in hindsight.
Man of the Match sponsored by Carne en Salsa went to Sols as he ran his heart out for the team made his presence felt. His physical tackles and fouls were enjoyable to watch and hopefully he can carry on this combative form as it will only help us in the future.
We at Boca HQ all hope you had a wonderful Christmas and New Year, we now look forward to 2014 and the continuation of the league and cup competitions.