Dream start for new-look Raiders
MGBSFL PREMIER DIVISION
NORSTAR LONDON RAIDERS A 3 LONDON MACCABI LIONS 0
Norstar London Raiders A began the new era with a convincing 3-0 victory over London Maccabi Lions White at Brunel on Sunday.
Missing several key players, the home side started brightly with Adam Jason and Ethan Zone going close.
Against the run of play, Lions were awarded a penalty after Yoav Lebens drove into the box only to be hauled down by Matt Stock. Ricky Engleman stepped up to take the spot kick, only to see his effort saved by debutant Jake Doffman, who got down to his right and held on to the ball magnificently.
Soon after, Stock made amends for his earlier error with an outstanding solo effort. Picking up the ball just inside the Lions half, he turned the defender and took the ball down the right wing, beating several men before striking the ball into the roof of the net from a tight angle leaving Dec Green helpless between the sticks.
A few minutes later Norstar doubled their lead when after some good work from the midfield, Zone picked up the ball on the left and his driven cross was deflected into the Lions net by their own defender leaving the home side 2-0 up at half time.
Little changed after the break, with Lions having numerous penalty appeals turned down after some theatrical tumbles. As they continued to press, Norstar managed to grab a third as Zone picked up the ball wide and shot low and hard giving Green no chance.
Norstar London Raiders A manager Phil Peters was delighted with his team’s performance: “Although it’s still very early days there was a huge amount of quality in this performance and the signs are very promising.
"Merging two teams was never going to be easy but with a full pre-season under our belts we showed today the kind of performance-level and result that I’m going to be expecting every week but there’s still a lot of work to do.
"It's hard to single anyone out after a game like that as everyone played their part but Jake in goal was magnificent and the highlight of the game and catalyst for the win was Stocky’s outstanding goal towards the end of the first half.
"We move on to next week when we face newly promoted Camden on their patch. They’ll be up for their first Premiership game, but the buzz around the Norstar Raiders squad at the moment is like nothing I’ve felt in Jewish football and long may it continue!"