It's Just Like Watching Brazil
USL All-Stars 0-0 The Owls
The Owls came through their second test of the American tour with credit, with a goalless draw against the USL 1st Division All Stars side, who included veteran 1994 Brazilian WC stars Zinho and Romario in their line up (though Romario didn't play!).
The Owls had the majority of the play and produced several good chances in testing conditions of heat and humidity, and at the end the match was a great workout for the team.
The starting line-up featured Deon Burton up front with Kenny Lunt supporting from midfield. Will 4-4-1-1 be the formation for this season? Chances were few and far between, but Burton, Lunt and latterly Maclean all had opportunities to put the ball in the net.
On balance, another useful run out against solid opposition, though not quite the result we wanted.
Paul Sturrock's comments: "If anyone was going to score it was going to be us but the finishing was poor. We had several chances and should have buried the game in the first half. The shape of the team was very good, we're starting to come together as a team and had two or three excellent individual performances. I tried a system change and was very pleased that it seemed to work for us, we tried it away from home last season and picked up several results. (The game) shows that we have done a lot of work on fitness. We had tired legs after using only one substitute. We intentionally did that to make sure that the players got their match fitness today and we were very pleased with that."
USL All-Stars: Vallow (Nelson 45); Sanflippo (Daley 45), Vincello (Nylen 57), Gervais (Braban 45), Shak; Dodds (Clarke 45), Zinho, Ball, Segovia; Rodrigez (McLaughlin 45), Simmonds.
Subs: Nelson, Daley, Branan, McLaughlin, Romario, Clarke, Nylen.
Wednesday: Adamson; Simek, Bougherra, Coughlan (Capt), Bullen; Brunt, Folly, Whelan, O'Brien; Lunt (MacLean 76); Burton.
At least the Brazilian connection gives me a chance to use a new header picture!