Monchiquense 2 – 2 Aljezurense


Aljezurense visited Monchique on Saturday knowing a win would probably secure 1st Division football next year and ensure the home side 2nd Division Football next.

Having taken three points from Aljezur early in the season the home side have only won 3 games all this term so things looked hopeful, little did any of us know about a certain official dressed in black.

Aljezurense started well enough and some free flowing football and crisp passing made the home team look poor, which they are.  A great move along the left allowed the perfect cross ball to Jardel who headed the ball onto the advancing Andre 20.  He met the ball full on and his volley flashed past the keeper and into the net from 20m, 0-1 and only 4 mins. gone.

Things were now looking good and Aljezurense whipped the ball around and it looked like goals would flow.  However this was all to come to an abrupt end when Andre climbed above the home sides central defender to head a ball clear from a corner, the two players fell to the ground and were scrambling to get up when Andre rose and moved forward the home team player stayed down for some reason.  With the ball still in play the referee blew his whistle and pulled the red card from his pocket, the ball bounced off the side of the pitch.

All hell broke loose and several players received yellow cards for their indication of not knowing what was going on,  but alas Aljezurense were 1 – 0 up with now only 10 men and a penalty to boot.  But no,  the referee gave a throw on, so in his quick judgement he has made an outrageous decision, and bottled the penalty.

Things were to get worse though,  and it appeared that every free kick went Monchiquense way and the referee’s yellow card kept springing from his pocket for innocuous challenges.

Aljezurense were all at sixes and sevens and although the home side were poor,  small gaps appeared when defending and half way through the half the home side were level. A corner on the right looked easy enough for the keeper Luis as he was unchallenged,  but the swirling wind caught the ball and he could only knock it into the path of a forward who scored with ease 1-1

Then something happened that none of the supporters knew about, the linesman went on the pitch to talk to the referee and without hesitation he sent the home team manager off, doing well now 2 reds and 5 yellows.

Monchiquense were bolstered by this and made several attacks on the Aljezurense goal,  but the defence held strong although gaps were showing where Andre played and changes were needed to ensure the best result. Then just before halftime,  a move down the right caught the visitors,  and although looking like offside the linesman waved play on and a cross into the penalty area found Monchiquense’s centre forward who scored with ease, 2-1.

The second half saw some change and Rafael came on to play right back and it appeared that Jardel was sacrificed for this. This change made all the difference.  Rafael blocked the hole and also Aljezurense had the advantage of the long throw expert. Football started to flow from the visitors,  but the punishing final pass went missing. Mid field was being bypassed and Eddy started to miss tackles and pass the ball square,  and Aljezurense were lucky to clear up a few chances made by the home team.

Still the referee was not going to be outdone, and in one single move he showed the yellow then red card to Bruno on the Aljezurense bench and the tally was now 3 red and 9 yellow……(Look at me I am a star!)

Aljezurense played some of their best football in one small patch when Rafael, Lawrence and Dani interchanged passes and Dani’s shot went just wide. Joao who had gone close with free kicks hit a great shot from 25m out but the keeper stretched to the full and made a great save. It didn’t look Aljezurense’s day.

Sam 9 came on as did Carlinhos 2 and at times just after this,  Aljezurense were caught when the defence played too far forward and last gasp defending saved the day.

Aljezurense started to look likely to score,  as the home side made little of the extra man. Some good passing in midfield found Lawrence some 25m out and his crisp shot beat the keeper but bounced off the underside of the bar, Pop was quickest to react and he headed the ball home to make the scores level, 2-2.

Aljezurense were now pressing to win and Dani, Sam and Joao went close but with 2 mins. of injury time left the defence got caught from a corner, the ball was played quickly forward and left the keeper one on one with the attacking forward, his drive was goal bound but Luis made a fantastic save to keep the point safe.

Not the greatest of football matches and a display by a referee who should not be allowed to take part at any level and by far the worst seen by the following support. His collection ended with 3 Red Cards and 14 Yellow Cards, it can only be assumed that he has to write reports for these to the Football Association. They would be worth reading as he would not have a clue what to write.

Andre and Aljezurense were unlucky with the red card as it unbalanced the team and little if nothing until halftime,  was done to sort out the problem. Andre is a fine player and has done well to return from last term’s injury,  and is the sort of quality the team needs. Rafael made the difference second half and was the perfect foil for Andre.

Now we need 2 more wins to ensure safety as it’s still not known if Algarve Utd.  will be included in the bottom 3. If they are, the bottom 2 at present cannot over take Aljezurense but 6 points would defiantly make it safe.



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