Lions arrested by the Police

By Danny Caro, October 7, 2008

HSCL Prem Div: Met Police Bushey 3 London Lions 1

The Lions had a chance to rubber stamp their authority at the top of the Herts County league as they visited second place Met Police but it wasn't to be their day as they went down 3-1.

Although the Lions created enough chances to win two games their recent goal scoring exploits deserted them in front of goal on a very blustery day.

The Police had a game plan from the start and stuck to it for the duration with great effect. They did ride their luck on occasions but they seemed hungrier and more determined in the tackles and that extra bite eventually was the difference.

Defending against a strong wind in the first-half the Lions settled quickly but were unable to play the free-flowing football that has been on show in recent weeks. The Police kept 11 players behind the ball and made sure there were no gaps for the Lions players to work into.

On the rare occasions the Lions did get behind the Police defence it ended with a poor shot, mistimed header or lack of any real quality. At the other end, the Lions defended well with the home side having yet to have registered one effort on goal in 40 minutes of play.

Then out of the blue the deadlock was broken with a wonder strike from 30 yards. Breaking free into 10 yards of space without a Lions midfielder in sight, the Police's holding midfield player let rip with a fierce drive that flew past Danny Berliner hitting the underside of the bar and into the goal.

Seconds later and just before the half-time whistle, Adam Stolerman had a chance to equalise with a header from six-yards but he somehow headed wide.

Still the mood was positive as the Lions knew they had the wind on their side in the second-half and that it would only be a matter of time before they got back into the game and perhaps go on and win it.

Funny how some things don't turn out the way you think. Met Police continued to stay compact and hungry and with too many Lions players having average games, before long it was 2-0. Poor defending and indecisive decision making added to the Lions woes.

Changes were made in order to try and inject some quality into the Lions game and for 20 minutes it was like the Alamo on the Met Police goal. Ben Lampert, Guy Helman, Adam Stolerman, Lee Cash and Ben Lauffer all missed good opportunities to pull the game back.

The sucker punch came five minutes from the end as Met Police scored a third which summed up the Lions day. Lions substitute Lee Cash scored a consolation on 90 minutes.

Quite clearly unimpressed by what he had just witnessed, Lions manager Tony Gold commented: "It was a real shame to come here the way we have been playing lately, top of the league and then not do ourselves justice.

"On chances created we probably did enough to draw or even win the game, but in terms of quality we were poor.

"They were well organised and seemed far more determined and focused then we were.

"I guess we are entitled to one bad game in eight and hopefully this will be a wake up call to show the lads we still have a lot of work to do."

Lions: Berliner, A. Lauffer (sub: Myeroff), Manson, Morris, B. Lauffer, Glass, Castle (sub: Schwarz), Helman, Lampert, Goodman (sub: Cash), Stolerman

Goal: Cash 90


Last updated: 5:28pm, October 7 2008