Olympia Bounce Back With Big Win Over City
Olympia 4 (Warren Wadawu 43’, Vincent Kamano 45+1’, Nicholas Mearns 60’, Harrison Thomas 73’)
Launceston City 0
The Olympia FC Warriors beat Launceston City 4-0 at Warrior Park this afternoon in an impressive showing by the Eastern Shore outfit. Nick Mearns was the star for the Warriors, putting in a sublime 60 minute shift in the midfield and scoring a bullet header to make the score 3-0 before being subbed off early. He was ably assisted by Warren Wadawu and Gavin Hoy who both played eye catching games on the wings, as the Warriors proved too strong for the visitors.
The Warriors looked to have brought in a weaker lineup to this match than the one that faced South Hobart in the Lakoseljac Cup the weekend before. Big Zois Galanapoulos was away getting married, whilst Thomas Bellini was also a notable absentee for the Warriors. Spiros Paradisis also wasn't in the starting 11, nursing an MCL injury. The replacements for the three outs were Vincent Kamano, Harrison Thomas and Roan Gillam, in what was a pretty young line up for the Warriors.
Olympia started the brighter of the two teams, controlling the tempo of the game, possession and creating chance after chance but struggling to find a way to generate a meaningful shot on goal for large parts of the first half.
Down the other end of the field, City barely go a look in, and when they did it was on the back of defensive errors from Olympia from misplaced passes, rather than any great attacking play.
Olympia finally drew first blood in the 43rd minute as Wadawu received a ball whilst running in from the right flank into the 18 yard box. As he ran diagonally he cut a left foot shot past Smith and into the bottom right of the net to make 1-0 for the Warriors to give them a deserved 1-0 lead.
Three minutes later it was 2-0 through a great team goal that heavily involved Mearns. Thomas played a one two with Mearns before passing to Hoy who played it back to Mearns. Mearns rushed to the byline before sliding a left footed pass across the goals for Kamano to poke home from less than 6 yard to doube the lead just before half time.
Olympia came out firing in the second half, continuing where they left off in the first half, but they were not able to penetrate the City defence again until the 60th minute. Vafakos ripped in a curling cross that Mearns had no right to get to, but he leapt highest and powered a header into the top left corner from about 15 yards out to make it 3-0.
In the 73rd minute it was the fourth and final goal of the game as Wadawu broke down the right flank before driving into the 18 yard box and playing a cutback to the unmarked Thomas who rolled home into the bottom left.
On the back of Mearns' and Wadawu's good form, as well as adapting a more team based style, The Warriors look a much better side. They've dealt well with the departure of the imports and look like a better team for it.
Olympia Coach Glenn McNeill was pleased with the win, "Yeah I was (pleased with the result), I was more happy with the way we played and I think at times we played very well."
"Combination play was good, we are working as a team now. Less individuals."
"Mearns and Hoy I thought had good games today. As a unit we are certainly combining well."
Launceston Coach Lino Schiulli was disappointed with the result, "yeah it was very disappointing - a lot better than last time we came here. I thought we were in the game for large parts, but Olympia were a lot more polished than us on the ball."
"A couple of silly goals that we let in right at the end of the first half were defensive errors... they came at a bad time for us."
"Ryan (Schofield) for his first time at centre half did quite well. Dom (Rossi) was good for his first game back."
"We've got Kingborough next week... they're travelling North... we will try just as hard as we did today and try beat them as well."