Kaya and Pasargad figure in a 2-2 draw
by rick olivares pic by fritz dalida c/o interaksyon
March 21, 2013
It could have been one of those moments where Pasargad self-destructed on its way to another poor result.
Goalkeeper Reza Ataei was whistled for a foul and a penalty after he bowled over Kaya forward Nate Burkey who had gotten inside the box. PSG head coach Essi Sedigh put his hands on his head and yelled, “No! No! No!”
Burkey had worked the ball inside but had two defenders on him with his back turned to the goal. He wasn’t exactly in a position to score when Ataei recklessly knocked him down like roadkill.
At that point, PSG was not only in control of the match against Kaya but was also leading 1-nil after Emmanuel MBata scored on a fabulous breakaway after a sublime header by forward Yannick Tuason in the 20th minute.
PSG threatened to tack on a second goal with mobile centerback Jaham Taher coming close on a few occasions with a few long range shots from the outside.
Both squads were in extra minutes in the first half when Ataei committed his blunder. Kaya captain Anton del Rosario took the spot kick and sent the PSG netminder to his right but placed the ball to the left.
Sedigh was beside himself over the blunder. Instead of going into the half with a one goal lead the game was back to square one with the score all even at 1-1. The Iranian coach launched into a tirade against Ataei in Farsi to mercifully spare the Filipino and African players.
He mapped out how his team could get back on track but at the start of the second half, his squad still could not mount any controlled attack from the back as Kaya pressed forward aggressively.
Kaya was missing six players – Chris Greatwich and OJ Porteria were on national duty, Sean Illif had a foot contusion, Toshi Hosoe and Junior Muñoz had groin injuries, and Dario Dakic was the first of his two-match suspension following the Green Archers United-Kaya fight of several weeks ago. It didn’t help that Masa Omura went out early in the match after his vision was impaired. Lacking key and starting players, Kaya’s game suffered heavily. Forwards Burkey and Eric Dagroh could not get the ball up front.
They were up against a PSG team that had finally started to hum to life after four consecutive dismal performances. Ataei’s penalty had shifted the momentum Kaya’s way and PSG were hard-pressed to rediscover their game.
Three minutes after the re-start, Burkey collected a pass, ditched Jaham Taher who had fallen to the turf a few yards outside the box forcing Ataei to rush out. Burkey’s right-footed finish gave Kaya a 2-1 lead and they looked to continue to punish their now disorganized foe.
However in the 78th minute, PSG found itself on the counter with Yonous Yaogo getting deep inside Kaya territory. He launched a cross that Kaya keeper Saba Sadeghi manage to tip away from harm’s way. Only the ball drifted to the left side of the pitch where new PSG midfielder Belinga Blanchard got to the ball and lofted a well-placed cross to an unmarked MBata who headed in the equalizer.
With time quickly dwindling away, Kaya sought to recover its lost lead but PSG beat back the attacks.
At fulltime, it was both a disappointing yet satisfying result. Both sides could have easily won and lost the game were it not for blunders on defense.
“We should have collected the three points but that’s football,” said Kaya head coach David Perkovic who is now 1-1-0 in two matches in the UFL’s Division One play. “Could be better but when you think of the number of players we lost for the match it isn’t so bad. But we have our work cut out for us.”
For Yannick Tuason, who had played with Kaya for five years before transferring to Pasargad, he was happy for two reasons. “It feels good to playa again and help in the effort,” said Tuason who had spent some time in Europe figuring out what to do. “At first it seemed weird to be up against my old team but once the game started it was fine. I feel satisfied.”
Sedigh in the meantime was feeling ambivalent. Had Ataei not committed the penalty, PSG might have won and gone up further in the standings. “But that’s football. At least it is not a negative result.”
The draw, PSG’s second in three matches for a 1-2-4 record, saw them move up to seventh place and away from the relegation zone while Green Archers United dropped to eighth spot in the tables after absorbing a 2-0 loss to Loyola last March 19.
Kaya remained at fifth spot with a 2-3-2.