Missing a number of key players through injuries and holidays Pumas knew this would be a tough game against a good side in AC Southside. We expect that Southside will be one of the top 2 or 3 teams in the league this year so we was all prepared for a tough game.
It started extremely tough as Pumas struggled early on with Southside starting the game quickly, they got off to a flyer early on when Pumas failed to deal with a ball into the box which was slotted in by a Southside forward.
It seemed a very strange game at this point with a lot of petulance, lot's of trying to frustrate the home team which led to the first booking. Southsides No.26 kicking out 3-4 times at Pumas midfielder Brad Hardy after he'd left the first challenge with the ball, this led to a few players coming together but was calmed down as Brad Hardy took himself away and joined the manager on the touchline for a drink. Southside seemed to be standing in front of every free kick & every throw in slowing the game down.
It took around 30 minutes for the Pumas to get going but they did start to put together some decent stuff towards the end of the first half but were then 2 behind. One of Southsides midfielders and one of the best players on the day ran away from 2 or 3 challenges before firing a low shot into the bottom corner, a quality goal which left a couple of the Pumas subs clapping a really good goal.
After half time Pumas started much brighter, a lot sharper to the ball early on in the half and Matt Cowen broke through before lobbing the ball over the keeper to make it 1-2. Pumas started to get on top at this point & then equalized within 10 minutes after Adam Hurrell was challenged from behind in the box, Matt Cowen made no mistake with the penalty to make it 2-2, game on. It was a shame however, when Cowen was kicked from behind by the Southside captain after scoring his penalty.
Southside then picked up another yellow card after their captain deliberately handballed to stop Pumas from breaking through, at the time we thought it was a red card but the referee explained he thought there was a covering defender although we didn't agree it's the referees decision to make & that was final.
Pumas were then in the ascendancy feeling a winner could be on the cards with more than 20 minutes to go. Southside had started to get frustrated, kicking out & regular niggles became an occurrence. With a couple of minutes left things became harder as Pumas forward Adam Hurrell was shown a red card after frustration with Southsides captain boiled over, he grabbed the Southside captain by the scruff of the neck which he was correctly sent off for. After both sets of players grew in frustration things were eventually calmed down & the game got back underway with a couple of minutes to go.
Pumas then took the lead in the 90th minute, Matt Cowen breaking clear again from a goal kick before slotting past the keeper. It looked there like Pumas would pick up all 3 points but in the last minute Southside equalized after a ball to the back post their centre forward turned inside before poking home, another good finish by another good player.
Pumas did have a chance to steal it in the last second as Matt Cowen was played through again but the Southside keeper this time pulled off a good save to keep the game at 3-3. A real eventful game with lots of ups & downs but in the end 3-3 was a fair scoreline given how both halves played out. Southside clearly the better side in the first half with Pumas stronger in the second.
MOTM- Matt Cowen