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Seconds get Vital win (home games 1/3/2014) Sticky

Mar
01

A big win by the seconds was the most positive news from Nossegem today. Turds and Ladies put up strong fights against teams at the top of their divisions but could not get the result they wanted. Fourths dropped two important points which opens the promotion battle back up. Vets 1 got a forfeit win, but all our rivals won today too.

The firsts went a goal down, then got a spectacular Sylvain-special 35m drive into the top corner to equalise, but as we pushed for a winner we instead ended up conceding a late winner to LXG Cinquantenaire. Both teams stay mid-table. Brussels British won again to continue their amazing season, while in Division 2B British United won again to maintain their one-point lead in the 2-horse race (with New Inn) to get promoted to Division 1.

The seconds, who have lost only 7 of their 21 games this season but were still not fully safe from relegation, took a major step towards safety with a 3-1 win against Eskimoos, who are currently in the highest relegation spot. A defeat could have left us only 5 points above the relegation zone with 5 games to go, instead we’re now 11 points clear. Euan, George (really!) and Ollie ( penalty ) scored the goals. A win next week might bring us mathematically to safety.

The Turds, strengthened by David Martin Garcia at right-back, guesting from Vets 1, managed to lose a very spectacular game 2-4 against third-place Ettekijs. Having gone 0-2 down, we pulled it back to 2-2 (with Stevie Byrne, also on loan from the Vets, scoring the second from the spot), but Ettekijs got two late goals to win it.

The fourths got a 0-0 draw, in the absence of half of our scoring-partnership, Manu being unavailable today. For once the other results did not go our way, with Emirdagspor and Black Star both winning. We’re now 6 points ahead of both, but Emirdagspor may have a game in hand (depends on the ruling of the game they played last week which was arrete’.)

Vets 1 had a strong panel but got a late forfeit when the opposition could not field the minimum number of players. Actually the minimum is 7 and they had 8, but one was sick, and they preferred not to play. Unfortunately all our key rivals won today, except Longchamp who had a bye. So we remain 3 behind Ambience Auderghem, who also have a game in hand, and two ahead of Longchamp who also have a game in hand.

Second Vets had a bye.

Ladies, playing the #2 Hutespot Bevel conceded 3 in the first half, but then came out fighting in the second half, getting two goals back – one a great solo run by Virginie, the other a penalty, also by Virginie, after she was fouled. and coming close several times. Hutespot maintained their edge with two quality strikes that gave Mariana no chance.

In the “5-a-side” friendly, the team of Euros, Denis, Walter, Matt and sometimes Bart vanquished our rivals 10-9 despite playing with an extra man and probably conceding more actual goals over the course of the game …

Posted By denisosu read more

Fourths and Ladies March on, Vets stutter but still in contention (away games Feb 22) Sticky

Feb
22

The Ladies got the day off to a great start with a 4-1 win in the first leg of their cup semifinal against Wakkerzeel. Second leg will be in Wakkerzeel at the end of March.

The firsts got a 1-1 draw at Coin du Balai, another team which has been strong in recent seasons but this season is struggling with us in midtable. Cillian opened the scoring but Coin du Balai leveled when we failed to clear a long ball. We wend close in the second half, Jakob hit the inside of the post, MOTM Charles forced a good save from the keeper – but Darragh also needed to make several saves. At the end Charles picked up a nasty-looking ankle-injury, to add to the many we’ve had this season.

Brussels British won again, 3-6 at La Lorraine, to claim the title a full six weeks before the end. Our sincere congratulations to them on an absolutely phenomenal season!

The seconds got another draw, although this one was against the bottom of the table team who have only 2 points – a win would have been nice, but at least we’re now 8 points above the relegation zone, still in need of a couple of wins to guarantee safety.

The turds lost 2-1 or 3-1 depending on which information source you believe, but either way we get no points. Details from this came are appropriately sparse.

The fourths, on the other hand, got back to promotion form with a 0-8 win. “Sparks on Fire!” was the communique received from club president Dave who went to cheer the lads on and saw  John Sparks back in scoring form with 4 goals after being out for several weeks. Skipper Manu bagged a hatrick and Cesar scored the other in what was an excellent performance. This is great news for the promotion run-in. We stay second. Third place Emirdagspor’s match was abandoned, so currently we are 8 points ahead of them, but they have a game in hand. We’re also 8 ahead of Black Star Genval.

Our other promotion hopefuls, the First Vets, got a 2-2 draw at Auderghem CF, while Ambience Auderghem won again and are now 3 points ahead of us with a game in hand. New Inn lost and Longchamp won, so Longchamp are now effectively second, a point a head of us, with New Inn nominally 4th, 5 points behind us, but with two games in hand. It really is Ambience Auderghem’s title to lose now, but it’s still far from over, their run-in includes a game against New Inn and three more against teams in the top half of the table. We play New Inn during the run-in so it’s in our control to finish ahead of them.

Second Vets got a fantastic 0-1 win. 0-0 at the half, we played most of the 2nd half with 10 men as Reinardt pulled off the tactical move of the decade, substituting Ciaran even though we had nobody to replace him. This famous move, known in football management theory as the non-symmetric-Kieran-elimination-strategy, was originally designed for Kieran Cagney, but had never been used in a competitive game until today, when, despite the spelling difference, the move proved successful. (seriously Ciaran, hope the knee injury isn’t as bad as it looked, and well done for some phenomenal running on your first game back). With 10 men we hung on grimly and then with a few minutes to go Damo lobbed a perfect pass for Reinardt to run onto to finish with aplomb. MOTM was surely Jeroen or Bart who were both outstanding, I don’t know which because I had to rush off to watch the rugby (on which subject, no comment)

Posted By denisosu read more

Ladies get weekend off to great start with cup semi-final win (22/2/14) Sticky

Feb
22

FC Irlande Ladies have one foot in the KVLVB Ladies Cup final after a phenomenal 4-1 victory in the first leg of the semi-final against Wakkerzeel. Full details to follow later in the weekend report - let's hope the men are inspired to follow their example (and also the Irish lads at Twickenham, although that wish might not be shared by everyone in the club ... :) )
 

Posted By denisosu read more

Draws galore! (Away games 15/2/2014) Sticky

Feb
15

The day after Valentine's Day is always a tough one for the Irish, as the lads try to make up for the other 364 days of the year by taking the wife out for curry-chips and a few pints down the local, leaving them not necessarily in top form for football … we saw the results of this again, as none of our men’s teams managed a win. For many purists, though, the headline will be that the only man to score for any of the non-Vet teams this week was Pat Ahern – it has probably happened before when he was playing for the 2nds, but now he’s continuing his scoring streak since taking over for the injured Sigve on the firsts.

The firsts got a 1-1 draw at Manzah, with the above mentioned Pat Ahern further strengthening his claim to be the be the new Leo Messi with another goal in a MOTM performance. Manzah missed a penalty with the score at 0-0, but Hans hit the post and Manu narrowly missed a chance for a winner – and then the final action was Darragh saving a one-on-one to preserve a draw that was probably a fair result between the two mid-table teams. Brussels British won again, and remarkably could already clinch the title next week! British United also won (in Div 2) to remain on track for promotion – we’re all hoping they make it so we can have six “local-derbies” every year in Division 1 instead of the two we currently have.

The Seconds were playing a tough away game to Esperance Chenois, and in a position where every point matters, their 0-0 draw is a fine result. Captain Nick promised to send through a message with all the highlights, and presumably he would have done so if there had been any, so it’s a fair assumption to say this was a game for fans of Jose’ Mourinho type defences rather than Barcelona type attacks. Indeed, reports suggest it was a game in which both teams by and large managed to neutralise one another. We created some quality chances, especially towards the end as Chenois started to tire. We should have won the game, but considering the overall situation, it was a precious away point and another solid team performance.

The turds played second-place Bousval Genappe. A weak first half saw us concede three soft goals and go in 3-0 down. In the second half we played much better, held them scoreless, put them under pressure, won a penalty (which was denied by a fantastic save) but never managed to break through. The top two teams in this division have won 29 of 35 games between them (the other being Ihvan, the leaders) and this was alwayw going to be a tough one.

The fourths got a 0-0 draw at Cosmos Molenbeek in what was undoubtedly another feast of attacking football. While we haven’t been exactly on promotion-winning form of recent weeks, we can take comfort from the fact that the teams chasing us have been doing even worse, and this week the third and fourth place teams, Emirdagspor and Black Star both lost, so we’re now 5 points clear of the 3rd place team with 7 to go. However, a few wins would really come in handy soon if we’re to clinch promotion!

First Vets drew 3-3 at Cosmos Molenbeek – this has always been a tough team for us to play against. Even a hattrick from that legend that is Stevie Byrne wasn't enough to get us the three points. Ambience Auderghem won and are now a point ahead of us with a game in hand, while New Inn are 4 behind but with two games in hand (their match today was “arrete’”, we don’t know why), and Longchamp are one point behind us having played the same number of games. Last week should have seen the top four play each other, with Ambience vs. New Inn and us playing Longchamp, but the remise generale meant that these matches will now happen at the end of the season, possible as the last series of games. Realistically this does not help us, as we needed Ambience or New Inn to take points off each other now, rather than going into our last game having to hope for the right result in their game ...

Ladies lost 3-1 against Ladies Tremolo - a team leading the league with an amazing 11 wins and one draw from their previous 12 games. And even then, we were unlucky not to get a point. We scored first, and when we were 2-1 down we had chances to equalise but were unlucky - before Tremolo got their third goal in the last minute. Would have been fantastic to get a point in this game, but we can still take confidence from the solid performance.

Vets 2 had no game this week.

 

Posted By denisosu read more

25th Anniversary June 6 - 8, 2014 Sticky

Feb
12

We are fast approaching the deadline set for responses to the 25th Anniversary questionnaire. 

We urgently need the responses to be received by next Monday Feb 17 as we have an important meeting of the Organising Committee in the evening. 

Please click on the link below
https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/FQP5JMT

Posted By daveverdon read more

Remembering and Honouring our great friend and teammate Warren - Away matches 1/2/14 Sticky

Feb
01

Today was all about Warren. Warren had been with FC Irlande since most of us joined – the idea of FC Irlande without Warren just doesn’t make sense. Not only does he have so many friends in the club, but his whole family is closely associated with the club – his brothers Sean and Gavin play, his sister Caragh is deeply involved too, and her husband Al is also a player.

How can the FC Irlande family deal with the loss of such a great, loyal and much-loved friend?

The simple answer is that we cannot – we can never replace someone like Warren – he will always be missed. The club will be a less colourful place, we’ll miss his laughter, his constant support and his unfailing good humour.

But the other answer is that if we are to deal with it, and unfortunately we must, then we need to do it together. So the past couple of days have been about that – players getting together in small or large groups, many tears have been shed, but also many laughs as we recall some of the many great stories that Warren has been part of over the years. He was truly a character like no other. In happier times in the future we may make an anthology of them, there cannot be another person who has left so many people with so many wonderful memories.

Until then, we can try to console ourselves with the knowledge that just as Warren has been a giant and wonderful part of FC Irlande over the years, so too FC Irlande has been one of the great sources of positive energy and support for Warren. In a life beset by too many tragedies, Warren always knew he could turn to FC Irlande for support. We all remember that amazing event several years ago when the whole club came together to raise some funds for Warren’s daughter Aileen’s medical care. That day, if he didn’t know it already, he realised how much so many people in the club loved him. Since then, whenever he’s gone through tough times, the people to whom he could turn again and again for support were his closest FC Irlande friends – some of whom were playing today, with very heavy hearts.

We always consider FC Irlande as "more than a football club", and Warren was one of the people who made it that way - he was like family to us, we were like family to him, and we come together like a family to help each other through this terrible time.

In the context of Warren’s tragic passing, today’s football was very much a secondary consideration. In fact, we didn’t want to play at all. Our first reaction was to ask the league if our games could be postponed, but this wasn’t possible, even for the Vets teams. Then we thought about not playing anyhow. Especially the Vets, with so many of Warren’s longest and closest friends, knew they would find it very hard to play today.

But in the end, we did play all our games today, for two reasons. First, we decided it would be appropriate to get the opinion of Warren’s family, and Sean made it clear that Warren would have wanted us to play. And second, we need each other’s support right now, and spending a Saturday afternoon together, playing, talking and remembering, was a good way to enable that.

All teams observed a minute’s silence today – we appreciate the support shown by our opponents and referees in respecting this – and the Vets teams wore black armbands as a mark of remembrance.

 

Vets 1 is the team most associated with Warren these days – several of the lads on the team would be among his closest friends. Before today’s game, Mark gave a short but emotional speech about Warren – football wasn’t even mentioned, beyond the idea of doing Warren’s memory proud. It seems totally appropriate that we got a 1-8 victory (Stevie got 4 goals, Euros got a cracker from 25m, David MR scored a great header, Frazer scored a penalty and David MG (I think) also scored). Furthermore, that victory, combined with a loss by New Inn puts us top of Division 2 for the first time in Vets history. We were not in the mood to celebrate, but it was good to know we had done what we could to send him off in style.

The second vets also won, 0-2, with goals from Oscar and Ken and a spectacular run through on goal without scoring by Robbie.

The firsts got back to winning ways with a 1-3 win, with the ever more resurgent Pat getting a header to add to two spectacular goals by Sylvain (inevitably) and Javier.

The seconds lost 1-0 to Cerco, a result that brings back the spectre of relegation, as Cerco were one of the three teams below us, and now they move to just three points behind us.

The thirds lost 3-0 to a very good Fleur Bleue side, despite activity until midnight as the transfer deadline neared, they were not able to get the reinforcements they needed.

The fourths got a fine 0-3 win against Wappers to stay in second place.

The ladies had no game this week.

Many of the players from all the teams, joined by several former players, went back to the Funky Monkey, our co-sponsors, where many more sad and funny discussions were had as we all struggle to come to terms with the idea of a future without Warren.

 

Today, the O’Connor family issued the details of the memorial services:

The Requiem Mass to celebrate Warren’s life will take place on Friday, 7 February 2014 at 10:30 in St. Anne’s church, Place de la Sainte Alliance, Uccle, Brussels, followed by the cremation at 13:00 at the Crematorium de Bruxelles (Avenue du Silence, also in Uccle) and a reception at the Café du Silence (Avenue du Silence).

Consistent with the character of the man, please dress colourfully.

Rather than flowers, the family asks that anyone wishing to, donate to the “Jour après Jour” charity ING bank BE 2531 0121 04 5982, with the mention Warren O’Connor.

 

FC Irlande will also be honouring Warren’s memory in an appropriate manner at a later time. For now our thoughts are with his family.

Posted By denisosu read more

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