Richmond County FC and Kelmendi FC NY battle in Week 4 of the 2020-21 season (Credit: Richmond County FC)
Sunday soccer raged on across the league during Week 4 which say the top teams all earn points to keep their spots. Defense played the biggest role over the day with only two teams scoring three or more goals. In the Top Four, Hoboken and Manhattan Celtic have emerged as the two leaders with both Shamrock and Stal Mielec not far behind.
Read the full week recap below:
Sunday, October 25, 2020
Beyond FC vs. Stal Mielec NY (1-1)
Week 4 began with an opportunity for both Beyond FC and Stal Mielec NY. The former could jump into the top half of the table with its second win, while the latter could keep pace in the Top Four as it and make it three wins in-a-row.
Instead, both left Laurel Hill Park with a goal and point each, 1-1.
Beyond team manager AJ Hamami said after the match that the team’s performance was critical following last weekend’s 4-0 loss to Shamrock SC.
“It was a well fought game,” Hamami said in an email. “I couldn't be happier with the team and the performance this weekend. To me, we were the better side of the day and should have come away with 3 points but credit to Stal for making it difficult and fighting hard for all 90 minutes.”
While the home side struggled to finish on a few key attempts that proved the difference, the key play came through when Paul Nitto assisted Rafa Ribeiro for the score.
For Stal injuries and lack of practice continue to be a factor. Pawel Marczenia was able to get his team on the board, but over the 90 minutes endurance became an issue. Manager Artur Kurasiewicz noted the six months without practice that the team has endured.
He and his group play NY Greek Americans II at Belmont on Halloween night for Week 5. Beyond will host Zum Schneider FC 03 II on November 1 at Laurel Hill in hopes of capitalizing against the winless side.
Kelmendi FC NY vs. Richmond County FC (2-0)
No goalscorer information provided
Kelmendi FC NY earned its first win of the season over Richmond County FC, 2-0, at Tibbetts Brook Park on Sunday afternoon. Last season in Division 2, it took the team three months (six games) before it achieved that while now the 3 points have come against one of last season’s standouts from the second tier.
“Kelmendi were the stronger team in the first half and deservedly led 1-0 at halftime,” Richmond head coach Halid Brkanovic said afterwards. “They scored on a rebound after our goalie saved a penalty and the first rebounded shot. (We) were able to up the pressure in the second half and created a handful of clear chances but were unable to convert any of them.”
Kelmendi iced the game when they scored off a counter attack in the closing minutes of the match.
Richmond will look to rebound on Halloween against Hoboken FC 1912. Meanwhile, Kelmendi will need to prepare for it’s Nov. 1 match against Manhattan Celtic if it hopes to make it two-in-a-row.
New York Greek Americans II vs. Polonia SC (0-1)
No goal scorer information provided
Polonia SC earned its first win of the young season, 1-0, against New York Greek Americans II on Sunday afternoon. The visitors jump to four points and now sit in seventh place, just under the top half of the standings.
For NYGA II, the loss makes it three-in-a-row following a Week 1 win over Real Ole FC. The team will only have six days to recover before it takes on fourth place Stal Mielec NY on the road on Halloween this Saturday.
On the other hand, Polonia has a chance to show the win was more than a one-off in Week 5. The team’s Oct. 31st night cap against the Manhattan Kickers, a side just two points ahead of them, will be a good litmus test to show how far it can punch in Division 1.
Real Ole FC vs. Hoboken FC 1912 (1-3)
An early goal and consistent pressing helped Hoboken FC 1912 remain perfect this season as they beat Real Ole FC, 3-1, on the road at Granite Knolls field.
The visitors controlled possessions for most of the contest and were able to score within the first few minutes. Louis Mobbs tapped in a cross from Kevin Halliday on the left to take the one goal lead with multiple chances to double up during the first half. However, Real tied up the game thanks to an assist from goalkeeper Fabio Hernandez.
In the 15th minute, Hernandez's goal kick was punted deep down field where the Hoboken centre back slipped over the ball, allowing Nick vonEgypt to gain possession and beat the keeper.
Hernandez kept his team in it for as long as possible, making multiple terrific saves to preserve the 1-1 scoreline, but in the 70th minute Joe Braun converted for his first 1912 goal, assisted by Halliday. Teddy Sisco scored a third shortly after to seal the three points for the visitors.
“We did a great job offensively controlling possession, managing the pace of play and creating chances,” said Hoboken head coach Steve Korfiatis. “Defensively we worked hard to shut Ole down through well organized team pressing. It took alot of heart and determination to break Ole down and control the match and I am proud of the character the guys showed.
“We know consistency and commitment are a necessity to win the league, which is our target for the year.”
Zum Schneider FC 03 II vs. New York Shamrock SC (0-4)
No goal scorer information
New York Shamrock SC left Roosevelt Island with four goals and three points on Sunday against a Zum Schneider FC 03 II that continues to struggle. The home team has allowed four goals in three of its matches this season while offense proves to be inconsistent.
For Zum, head coach Ryan Horch will need to try and bounce back quickly as his next two matches will pit him against a Beyond FC team looking to stay in the top half and a Richmond County FC side that is looking for its own spark to jumpstart its own season.
Shamrock have a two game roadstand next week to kick off November. The still-unbeaten Rocks play Real Ole FC on Sunday before traveling to face Manhattan Kickers on Wednesday. The highest scoring offense in the CSL, with three straight clean sheets to boot, will be challenged to keep up the pace on short rest.
Manhattan Celtic vs. Manhattan Kickers (2-1)
In the battle of Manhattan, Celtic remained undefeated on the season and beat the Kickers, 2-1, in Sunday’s night cap. With the win, the team remains tied with Hoboken for the top spot in Division 1.
The Kickers went into the match hoping to play spoiler and jump into the top half of the table. However, the visitors struggled to contain Celtic throughout the night and before the first half concluded the home side struck. Cesar Serna scored a volley to put his team on the board in the first 45.
The Kickers earned a goal back thanks to a counter attack, it’s best tactic during the match, thanks to Albi Rexha but it was not enough. Celtic were awarded a penalty in the final 45 which Marco Charnas slotted home to give his team the win.
“We created some excellent chances hitting the post twice overall throughout (and) deserved the win, “ Celtic head coach Matthew Kane said in an email. “We know we have huge games coming up next few weeks and hope to improve as we have some key players out missing.”
Kane and his crew will look to start November like they did October, with a win. The team will play Kelmendi FC NY on the 1st in Yonkers. Meanwhile, the Kickers will finish October with a Halloween night clash against Polonia SC.