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Raiders B beat Brady in seven-goal thriller

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JC MSFL PREMIER DIVISION
North London Raiders B 4 Brady Maccabi A 3

Rob Richman's Raiders B won a seven-goal thriller at Brunel with goals from Mike Hershman, Gilad Kestenbaum, David Esterkin and top-scorer David Dinkin.

A bad tempered match saw last years promoted teams play out a seven-goal thriller at Brunel University.

Brady fielding a weakened squad, with no recognised forward, didn’t start too badly, playing the better football, however were relatively toothless going forward, taking out midfield maestro Zak Presky, and throwing him up front.

Raiders took the initiative early on as a bouncing through ball split the Brady defence, and the usually reliable Oli Colmans came hurtling out of his goal, with no right to get the ball, and the Raiders forward deftly lifted the ball over his head.

Brady pushed on in the first half, however were unable to test the Raiders keeper, and went in trailing at half time.

The second half started in much the same way the first ended with Brady playing the better football, but seemingly unable to break down the Raiders back four. Mike Hershman raced down the right flank, cut the ball across, for Colmans to drift underneath only for Raiders to double their lead.

Brady heads went down, as without Jon Green, Paul Hakim and TJ Keterman, Brady looked blunt, even with Presky running his socks off up top on his own.

Brady did welcome back Lee Platt after three months out injured, and his class began to tell, as his intricate passing with Steve Field was beginning to cause the Raiders back line a few more problems.

Despite Brady on the ascendency Raiders struck again, after a poor back-pass was met by Colmans, only for him to be flattened by the on-rushing forward, which the referee completely missed, the ball was rolled into an open net.

Brady did get back in the game with a far post diving header from Platt, and a 40-yard chip from Josh Hershman, however Raiders struck a fourth late on.

Brady did however nearly nick a draw, with Presky scoring late on, and the missing a glorious chance with the last kick of the game.

Although a well fought out match, this will be remembered for the 20-minute, American football match which ensued midway through the second half, and the ref’s lack of ability to control the melee.

Raiders boss Rob Richman told JC Sport: "First and foremost I am delighted with the win. Our record against the lesser established Premiership teams is brilliant this season and for some reason or other whenever we have played Brady over the last two seasons we have managed to get the rub of the green and the results.

"Having not played a match for six weeks, I was a little bit concerned about how we would cope with a Brady side who had played the previous couple of weeks. However, I had no reason to be worried as our performance for all bar injury time was excellent and I don’t really believe the score-line tells a true reflection.

"We stopped Brady from playing and looked a threat every time we went forward. A lovely lobbed finish from Kestenbaum had given us the lead at half time and in the second half goals from Esterkin and Hershman gave us a deserved three goal lead with 15to go.

"Brady managed to grab one goal back but we went up the other end and a typical lethal strike from Dinkin restored our three goal advantage.

"More and more chances came our way with Dinkin hitting the bar and Woolf twice, Esterkin and Hesselberg all seeing chances go begging. At this stage I thought the game was over as Brady, who clearly not accustomed to being three down, seemed more interested in the physical side of the game than playing their way back into it.

"However, my side rather naively switched off and deep, deep into injury time we managed to concede two in a matter of minutes when we should have been home and dry. I do have to question why the second half lasted just shy of 60 minutes!

"Overall though this was a game we should have won 4-0. I am just delighted we managed to get another three points on the board. Brady are a top side so to have managed to take four points from six is pleasing.

"We are all now excited at the prospect at playing against Manchester Maccabi and the national Peter Morrison Trophy holders next week in what will no doubt be an excellent game of football."

Brady boss Josh Rosenfeld told JC Sport: "In truth I thought we were awful. It was one of our worst performances of the season. We gave away three sloppy goals with comical errors to go 3-0 down.

"The boys lost their discipline a bit and we looked all over the place. I was pleased to see a bit of pride at the end to get the game back to 4-3 and in truth we should have equalised at the end.

"I am not going to focus too much on one performance. It's our first defeat in six and the next to test is to see how we bounce back after that with Temple Fortune on Sunday.

"It's never easy to play anyone without strikers but we managed to get three goals and all credit to Raiders B. They are a good side who will keep working unil the end."

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