Dominant start with a 3-0 win in Palmy

Saturday, April 4, 2015

PNBHS (0) v Team Taranaki (3)

                                                                                    Vincent Sharp (65, 75), Mustafa Can (85)




Team Taranaki kicked off their 2015 Federation football campaign with a dominant 3-0 away victory against Palmerston North Boys' High School on Saturday.

Three second half goals secured the win, Vinnie Sharp grabbing two and substitute Mustafa Can the third with 10 minutes left on the clock.

Windy conditions and a rock hard playing surface made it tough going for both teams.

The first half was one-way traffic, PNBHS struggling to arrest the possession and territory dominance enjoyed by Energyworks Team Taranaki.

From open play, Dommie Squatriti was the first to be denied a certain goal when his left foot curling shot was well saved and the same player found himself unable to convert on two occasions when he failed to latch on to through balls.

TT coach Ian McGrath said his side built play from the back, passed the ball well and created several scoring opportunities from open play and set pieces in the first half.

"At halftime, I just told them to be patient, to keep playing the right way and be more accurate with their execution in the final third," he said.

"We totally dominated possession and territory, we were just a bit unlucky in front of goal."

However, Team Taranaki made the most of their opportunities in the second spell.

It was striker Sharp who found a way to break the deadlock from inside the penalty area midway through the half that the young PNBHS goalkeeper failed to stop.

A through ball from Squatriti split the defence just enough to release Sharp, who made no mistake from close range to notch his second goal in the game.

Sharp added a second goal moments later, catching a PNBHS defender in possession and unleashing a left foot shot that sneaked into the corner of the goal just inside the post. Tomas Mosquera, Dommie Mosquera and Vincent Sharp made way for under-19 development players Karl Wright, Zeke Oliver and Mustafa Can with 15 minutes left and all three brought zest to a tiring frontline.

Can took full advantage of a superb through ball from Matty Kelbrick to rifle home a shot that rounded off the victory in the season opener.

"We got what we deserved in the end," said McGrath. "We just had to wait a while to get some breathing space. We should have been 3-0 up at halftime, but it just did not drop for us and I could sense the frustration creeping in.

"In the second half, we perhaps did not play quite so well overall, but we scored three very good goals to secure the win."

Team Taranaki banked three points from the match.

Team Taranaki are on the road again this Saturday to face Red Sox Manawatu, who were beaten Sunday 4-1 by North End in the first round.

 - Taranaki Daily News