Lincoln stopped playing as a team after Glacis were down to ten men, said manager Raul Procopio.
Although he was happy with the 6:1 final result that keeps the Red Imps at the top of the league, he was disappointed with the way his players abandoned the Lincoln football philosophy as soon as they saw the match was won.
“I think as soon as the match opened up everyone wanted to do their own thing which was against the group play we have to get used to,” said Procopio. “Not all our games will be as easy as this one so we are making a mistake if we change our playing identity when we think the work is done. The passing was too slow which led to a direct style that forced players out of position and broke up forward thrust of the squad.”
From the start Glacis United got everyone behind the ball, clearly stung by last week’s 6:0 mauling at the hands of Europa. In contrast, Lincoln bided their time, as they waited for the breakthrough that would open the floodgates. It came within the first quarter of an hour after a cross-field pass found Joseph Chipolina in space, the left-back delivering a the perfect pass to the other Chipolina, captain Roy, who led from the front with a well-taken goal.
However, Glacis seemed charged up for the game and kept their discipline to prevent total capitulation even when they were victims of what even Lincoln fans felt was the most unfortunate moment of the game at the hands of the referee. He stopped the game after Anthony Bardon tried to bundle the ball over the line past a fallen defender and goalkeeper. When the defender got up he was greeted by a red card, presumably for handling the ball on the line, a sight he was not too happy with and stormed off the pitch only after squaring up to the referee for over ten seconds.
Kyle Casciaro did the honours, easily slotting to the keeper’s right for his first of the evening. But despite being down to ten men, Glacis did not let up their pace and it seemed that it was at this stage where the rampant individualism Procopio talked about kicked into effect, Lincoln losing their flow and being limited to long-range efforts that shaved the woodwork.
In fact, the Champions had to wait until the second half for Portuguese attacking midfielder Antonio Livramento to weave another of his mazy runs along the byline before knocking it back to Lee Casciaro who pulled the trigger and upped the score a notch as the Red Imps sought to increase their goal difference in the title race. Rather than lie down and die, Glacis United responded with one of the best goals of the afternoon as Carrasco floated a sweetly struck free kick into the bottom corner with their first of two shots on target.
Eventually all the extra running had its effect on Glacis as Livramento got on the scoresheet himself, followed by a well-taken goal by Yeray Blasco who took on the keeper and knocked it into the back of the net. The one-sided match was wrapped up by substitute Guido Abayian who sealed the rout after the Glacis goalkeeper fumbled the ball and the Argentinian passed it in from a tight angle.
At the end Bardon admitted that although they did not have the best of starts they were much more comfortable after the penalty kick and sending off: “I think Glacis scored a great goal from the free-kick and for myself, it’s been good to adapt myself to the centre-pivot position connecting defence and midfield that the manager has chosen for me. Playing in different positions will improve my game across the board and making a better player.”
Procopio was hopeful that the next match could see Saturday’s issues ironed out: “We need to keep working hard and improving this team every week starting with Lynx next week which will be a tougher proposition against one of those clubs competing with us for the championship this season.”
See pictures from all the action here: https://www.facebook.com/coresportgib/posts/716760275092109