11th January 2019 at Kings Park Pitch 3 with a 21:00 kick-off.

Squad: Ricky (GK), Alex, Riggers, Matt Z (Captain), Morse, Danny H, Steve L, Darius, Jethro, Crommy, Scotty and Thierry.

Scorer: Danny Haggarty.

This was billed as our most important match of the season in order to open up a very heathy points gap at top of table.

Although during the week a few of our top players couldn’t make it, DBFC still had a very decent squad listed on Friday morning, even with 3 players calling their attendance as 50/50.

This is when things turned sour! Only one of the 50/50 came good for a part game, then Christian went sick, then Robbie had to pull out late and then Pius did not show. Scotty stepped in and we had a squad of 12, of which there were 2 new signings. We could not convince any others during Friday but we still had a decent side to make a strong showing.

Yet the difficulties for DBFC didn’t stop with getting a decent squad together. After a furious start, which saw 2 goals in the first 4 minutes (1-1) DBFC settled and Matt Z and Riggers looking solid at Centre Backs, it became obvious that the referees were completely useless and seemingly biased against DBFC. The near side linesman was always 5 yards behind play, lining himself with the ball instead of the DBFC back line, so missed a ridiculously obvious off-side (at least 1 clear yard off) when the DBFC back line stepped up and stopped for the shout. The flag stayed down and the USRC forward got the goal. The bad luck didn’t stop there when after 20 minutes Matt Z put in an unnecessary challenge on the USRC winger. Although Matt got away without conceding a penalty, he went over on his ankle and couldn’t continue. On came our only sub Thierry at CB, and again things settled. However, this disruption gave USRC the upper hand and from a USRC corner, that was cleared, the ball was lobbed back into the box to find a USRC player, who was played onside by a DBFC player that had switched-off and didn’t push out with his defence. The shot was superbly saved by Ricky but 2 USRC players had run through to the goal line to pop the loose ball into the net. Again the scorer was clearly off-side to take the rebound off Ricky. This was frustrating as the DBFC bench was based at that end of the pitch to watch the DBFC back line and the line-ref was yards back.

At this time Steve was struggling in midfield with his knee injury and was hobbling around asking to come off but no subs were available. Then another disaster came about 10 minutes from the end of the first half because of a very bad referee decision; Riggers was sent off! USRC played a ball over the DBFC back line and their forward chased through, covered by Riggers, who held the forward off but he went down on the 18 yard box. This was not a foul and at the stretch of imagination a referee may have called it, which he did. Even with a foul called it wasn’t a yellow, but the referee brandished a red card saying Riggers was the last defender stopping the USRC player going to a goal scoring chance. This unbelievable as the USRC player was behind Riggers and he held him off with his arm and Thierry was alongside Riggers. The referee ruined the game with that decision. DBFC managed to get to half-time at 3 – 1 down.

DBFC started the second half with 9 players as Steve could not continue. DBFC tried their hearts out in the second half but unsurprisingly were unable to stop more goals. The referee continued to ignore bad fouls on DBFC players and branded a number of yellow cards to DBFC players for questioning his decisions. The USRC last (7th goal) summed up the referee’s bias in the game, when new boy Jethro had the ball at 20 yards from the DBFC goal, facing his own keeper, when the USRC forward took him down from behind. The referee ignored the calls and the USRC player scored to make the final score 7 – 1.

The game was a total disappointment for many aspects but the worst was the factor in the control of our team and that is attendance. With more notice the managers have good chance to search and call in players but at short notice, for a late Friday night, this task becomes impossible.

So it’s now down to DBFC to stand tall and put the record straight by winning all our remaining games and taking the league title. We are still top of the Division 1 table.

MOM: Crommy for continuing to work his heart out, focusing on playing footy and not getting involved with the referee.

DOD:  The referee.