Match in a Sentence
Despite a poor first half, the Humber Hawks came to life in the final 45 minutes and cruised past the Lambton Lions.
- Humber came into the weekend unbeaten in league play and operated in a 4-3-3. Humber’s wingers stayed wide stretching the game, and their midfielders were expected to spread the ball out wide whenever the chance was presented. There was no tactical secret to this formation. It was your basic 4-3-3 setup.
- Lambton started off their season on a high note snapping a 43 game losing streak. Their opening day win against Redeemer was the Lions first win since September 15th 2007. The Lions lined up in a compact 4-5-1 that was directed numerous times to stay narrow in the first half.
- Lambton started the game lively holding Humber in their own half for the first 10 minutes. Their attack was particularly going through the left flank as their lone striker would drift over their in attempt to draw out Humber’s Centre backs. Lambton’s midfield and back line sat deep, and relied on their lone striker to hold up play so that they could attack in numbers when the opportunity was presented.
- What I found interesting in this match was that Lambton’s coach repeatedly dictating, “stay compact, keep narrow and hold your shape.” He came into the game looking to frustrate Humber and come away with a point. It’s been a trend to come to Humber and look to grind out a result, and his tactics were spot on, but unfortunately for the Lambton coach, things didn’t go as planned.
- It’s been a repetitive story line this season for Humber to start of slow in matches, and it continued against Lambton. The Hawks opted to give a few first year players an opportunity to showcase their talent, but it wasn’t the impression they would’ve hoped to make. Humber was constantly giving up possession in the midfield, and they failed to take control of the game. Lambton allowed Humber time on the ball, but they weren’t moving it fast enough. Humber simply lacked the creativity in the midfield and the movement upfront to break down Lambton’s two banks of four.
- Lambton was very much in the game, and Humber didn’t have the attacking options on the field to break down their disciplined defence.
- Humber opened the scoring from a well-taken Roberto Galle free kick from 25 yards out. The Lambton keeper was at fault as he moved too far to his right and left Galle with practically an open goal to shoot at. Frankly, it was Lambton’s only mistake of the half as they frustrated Humber. But as many teams have learned this season, when you make mistakes against Humber they’ll punish you.
- It was a short-lived debut for many of the first year students as they were replaced by the first team players at the start of the second half. It was the right move as they instantly made an impact to the game. Humber were moving the ball much quicker, doing much better in wide areas and they finally took control of the game. There was no real change in the shape of both sides. Humber was eager to push more, while Lambton was slowly sitting deeper as the game progressed.
- Unlike the first half, Lambton came into the second half sluggish. As the game went on their legs tired from constantly defending and it was only a matter of time before Humber scored a second. Lambton’s striker was isolated for most of the second half, and when ever he did attempt to hold up the ball he was outnumbered by Humber’s solid centre backs.
- The second half was dominated by Humber with goals from, Shezan Singh and substitutes Nick Cisternino and Matthew Rios. The linkup play between Rios and Cisternino was brilliant and they caused the Lambton backline several problems in the final 45 minutes. Rio’s was the game changer in this match. His ability to link up with the striker and drop deep in the midfield drew the Lambton defenders out of position several times. Humber was missing a player of his quality that was able to draw out defenders and open up a very narrow Lambton midfield with his nifty passing ability.
- It wasn’t a game to remember for the Lions but they look to be headed in the right direction. They gave Humber a fight, but unfortunately their players lacked the quality to effectively hit Humber on the break. A playoff berth would be a successful season for the Lions and it’s an achievable goal if they can stay healthy and continue to grind out results.
- Humber’s impressive second half performance saw them play Lambton off the field, in what was frankly their best half that I’ve seen this season. Their back line was solid yet again, but going forward they struggle to put balls in the back of the net. They’ll face better competition as the season progresses, and right now it’s really difficult to assess this side. Whether they possess the qualities to retain their OCAA title for the third straight year is unknown. This side will need to pick up form in the upcoming weeks if they plan to meet their expectations.
- Kingsley Boasiako
- Matthew Rios
- Gerardo Magno