Guadeloupe through to Digicel Cup Final
|(34') Reysandri Cervantez||(55') Gregory Gendrey|
|(78') Jean Luc Lamboude|
Friday, December 3rd 2010 – Pierre Aliker Dillon, Martinique: Guadeloupe qualified for the Digicel Cup Finals for the first time in their history with a heroic win over a technically gifted Cuban side by a 2-1 scoreline in Stade Pierre Aliker in front of a fanatical French crowd.
As both teams had suffered the heartbreak of being the bridesmaid in the past two Digicel Cup semi finals, neither side were prepared to spare an inch to the other from the outset as the game started at a ferocious pace.
Guadeloupe started the game missing some of their more regular first choice players including inspirational captain Stephane Auvray, while Cuba saw their own inspirational players return after their one match suspension after the final Group H game against Grenada.
The first real chance of the match arrived on 25 minutes when a perfectly flighted corner by Serrano was met by Montoya but his headed effort was cleared away near the line by the French defender Mocka.
The carbon copy of this chance occurred on 32 minutes but this occurred after Duarte Pla was denied by a fantastic save by Bus after the Cuban striker was set up by Campanioni who danced around the left back before he found his team mate.
Collet had Guadeloupe’s best chance of the first half but even his sweet left foot could not find the target from a dead ball situation 20 yards out on the right hand side.
On 34 minutes Cuba took the lead, deservedly so. A well taken free kick from the right by captain Valencia, found an unmarked Cervantez who could not miss from 4 yards out after Bus had come to punch and missed, leaving a gaping net for the diminutive midfielder to gleefully head home and cue the ecstatic celebrations.
Bus made a start in atoning for his mistake 4 minutes later when he got down well to his left to turn a blistering shot from Cervantes past the left hand post.
The second half started with Cuba looking to assert themselves again and make the game safe. On 54 minutes a hopeful cross was thrown into the Cuban box and after Cervantez out jumped the French striker Gotin to head the ball clear, referee Wijngaarde adjudged the player to have fouled the attacker in the box and pointed to the spot. The shock in the stadium was audible, not to mention the bewilderment of the Cubans. Notwithstanding the commotion, Gendrey was unphased and coolly slammed the ball into the top left corner to bring the teams level.
The Cubans rose to the challenge and 4 minutes later the French had the post to thank as Valencia’s free kick from 15 yards rebounded off the right post with the follow up from Isidoro being blasted high and wide.
Campanioni was inches away from restoring the lead for Cuba when Serrano’s perfect corner was just an inch too high for the winger who leaped like a salmon but just could not sprout any higher to guide the ball into the net from 3 yards out.
The game was really heating up now and the growing crowd were being treated to a real spectacle of football as the play swung from end to end. The French introduced a big target man up front in the form of Currier who almost made an immediate impact when put through by Gendrey, only for the big striker to get the ball caught under his feet.
On 78 minutes the stadium in Dillon erupted. The big centre half Jean Luc Lamboude lined up a free kick 35 yards out and hit it so hard with a viscious swerve that wrong footed Hernandez and Guadeloupe were in front for the first time in the match with 12 minutes remaining.
Guadeloupe had the wind in their sails now and the growing crowd cheered every kick. With 4 minutes to go Guadeloupe nearly gave the lead away when a needless free kick 25 yards out allowed Valencia another dead ball opportunity. After hitting the post with his effort just after the French equalizer, he yet again hit the woodwork, this time the crossbar with Bus struggling to get near the flight of the ball, it proved another lucky escape for Guadeloupe.
With the last kick of the game Cuba had another deadly free kick on the edge of the box and when Valencia’s free kick arrived in, Colome had the chance to equalize but his header landed straight in Bus’s arms and with it the end of the game.
The Guadeloupians celebrated in style with cheering and waving to the crowd, as the French overcame the semifinal stage for the first time in three attempts. Unfortunately for Cuba they fell at this post yet again. The pre game favourites were out and the magic of the Digicel Caribbean Cup continues.
Guadeloupe now await the winner of the second semi final for Sunday’s final while Cuba will have their hopes set on picking up the bronze medal in their final match.
The Digicel Cup Finals will be played from November 26 through to December 5 in Martinique with live television broadcast worldwide courtesy of Digicel as well as live radio coverage, images and updates on www.digicelfootball.com.
For more information, access to match images and live score updates, visit www.digicelfootball.com.
1 Odelin Molina Hernandez 2 Carlos D. Francisco Serrano 3 Jeniet Marquez Molina 6 Yoel Colome 7. Marcel Companioni 8. Jaine Valencia (Captain) 11 Sander Fernandez Cervantes (13. Adonis Soler 82 mins) 14 Aliannis Urgelles Montoya 15 Armando Curumeaux Isidoro (10. Roberto Balmaseda 70 mins) 16 Reysandri Cervantez 19 Leonel Duarte Pla (17 Yosniel Diaz 83 mins)
Coach: Raul Gonzalez Triana
1 Yohann Bus 2 Kevin Lacroix 5. Dominique Mocka (11. Mickael Antoine Currier 69 mins)13 Jean Luc Lomboude (Captain) 9. Ludovic Gotin 10. Gregory Gendrey 12 Cedric Collet (3. Mathias Babel 90 mins)18 Eddy Viator 14 Julien Ictoi 17 Larry Hanany (8. Fabien Belson 60 mins) 19 Larry Clavier
Coach: Roger Salnot
Referee: Enrico Wijngaarde (Suriname)
Assistant Referee 1: Ramon Louisville (Suriname)
Assistant Referee 2: Egbert Paesch (Suriname)
Match Commissioner: Patrick Beckles (Barbados)
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