It’s 2 PM and the Vikings Cosmo team are meeting for their first match of the season. The weather is great, resembling a Scandinavian summer day, slightly raining and freezing cold at 24 degrees. The newly appointed coach Dom starts off game day by running all players through our goals for this season, our values as Vikings players and the details for today’s match. After the pep-talk, everyone is very motivated and feel hyped to go out and get the first 3 points and set the trajectory for the season! A strong team was selected, including two new young guns and one high jacked from the vets team, starting off the game in a standard 4-4-2. - - - Whistle blows and both teams are off to a nervous start. Players are trying to get a feel for the wet pitch and more importantly their legs after a long holiday break away from anything remotely resembling physical activity. It became clear from the first couple of long punts from the Swiss defence that they had one playmaker (#3) they looked to pass as often as possible, as well as one target man (#13) looking to out-pace our defence by long runs on their left wing. When Vikings started to pick up the pace, chances immediately occurred. A very high pressure from the front six players led to interceptions that translated into plenty of good chances for the Vikings. Despite this, the many fans on the sidelines had to wait 30 minutes for the first chance to be converted - a well placed lob cross over both two defenders and a goalkeeper leaves Christian with a clear-cut header (pretty much in the goal line). Vikings up 1-0. The second goal came shortly after: A good run from Lasse into the box and a layoff to Brian in front of goal meant for 2-0. Even though Swiss had some very good runs from their wingers, keeper Dragsbeak was never really challenged. So to make things more interesting, he passed the ball short to Anders who fumbled the ball, leading to Swiss’ first shot on goal: 2-1… Halftime The Vikings continued to look like the better team after the break still piling on the high pressure on the Swiss defence. Amidst the many chances, Christian found himself with the ball in the Swiss box and took a strike. Well done, 3-1 Vikings. After 15 minutes of play, Karl Martin was subbed on. It was clear that coach Dom sent him on the pitch with the mentality of testing the keeper because with his (most likely) first touch on the ball, he optimistically took a go at goal from an angle, 30 meters out, towards the back post. GOOOOOOOOAL! Definitely a goal of the season contender for Lord. The morale was high and Vikings wanted even more, so the pressure was kept high and the pace even higher. Finally, striker Leslie was able to convert with a well-timed header to bring the game to its final score: 5-1. A well fought match displaying fantastic team effort, also reflected in the many MoM mentions. Thank you to Swiss FC for a well fought match, and thank you for everyone on the sideline for support.
After a very difficult first half of the season, Swiss FC's New Year resolution was to improve, not just in terms of performance, but also to get results. And the team came out of the starting blocks firing on all cylinders. The first 20 minutes were probably among the best we have played all season. Vikings were not given any space and Sean, Andrew and Sebastain were a constant threat. It took Vikings a good 20 minutes to settle and to understand that the Swiss had not just shown up to make up the numbers. Sadly we did not take any of our chances. Our shots (Gabriel, Gordon) were either wide or straight into the GK's arms. And on 25 minutes, and pretty much against the run of play, Vikings take the lead. A cross (?) arcs through the box and finds the tall striker at the back stick: easy header 0:1. But the Swiss continued to play good football, only the last pass was too often missing. And from a counterattack Vikings scored the second, when the Swiss defense was cut open. Neat finish. But with a minute to play Gabriel laid up for Sebastian, who drilled the ball into the top corner. Top class! 2:1 Vikings at the break. The half-time talk was that we were totally on par with the Vikings and that we can get something from this game. That hope was partially crushed within 60 seconds of the restart. We had two opportunities to clear the danger, but the ball bounced to a Viking who hammered the ball home. The next 30 minutes were even, both teams playing attacking football. When the Vikings sub then scored the goal of his life (20 meters across the goal and into the top right hand corner - no chance for Felix) and a last minute header lead to a brutal 5:1 scoreline. Well done Vikings! For the Swiss it is to build on the first 45 minutes which were very good, the second half was ok. We need to put together a performance over 90 minutes in order to get points.