Dragoons 1-1 Sparta Skrzeszowice: Fallon d’Floor

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Dragoons Dragoons
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Sparta Skrz. Sparta Skrzeszowice
Sat, 30 Mar 2024 15:00 Klasa A — Week 14
KS Prądniczanka Kraków

Recap

Fallon d’Floor

After a long winter break, the Dragoons returned to action on Saturday as Sparta Skrzeszowice visited Prądniczanka.

Hugo Cruz elected a 4 2 3 1 formation with Lorenzo Bartolomei remaining between the sticks for a 3rd consecutive game. The Dragoons coach stood on the sidelines once again serving the last game of his two-match touchline ban. Mark Szczesnowicz took the reigns, ably assisted by Dave Burch.

Roman Bilovol, Kuba Drobny, Simon Calabrese and Francesco Leuci lined up in the defensive positions, with Brian Lemmen and Enrico Forabosco sitting at the base of midfield ahead of them.

A first start for 17-year-old Jan Krzyżanowski saw the youngster lineup in an attacking position flanked by Rohit Chandran and Błażej Święcicki on the wings.

Vałdzis Fuhaš started in attack, looking to build on his brace in the last league match against Czarni Grzegorzowice.

Krakow Dragoons FC posing for a pre-match photo
Starting XI — Lorenzo Bartolomei, Kuba Drobny, Błażej Święcicki, Brian Lemmen, Vałdzis Fuhaš and Roman Bilovol (top), Enrico Forabosco (C), Simon Calabrese, Jan Krzyżanowski, Rohit Chandran and Francesco Leuci (bottom)

Kick Off

Sparta kicked the game off and made their intentions abundantly clear, hitting a long ball that bounced through to Bartolomei.

First Chance

The Dragoons created the first chance of the game after 5 minutes. The visitors failed to deal with Forabosco’s attempted pass to Chandran and the ball fell to Fuhaš who touched it onto Krzyżanowski. A pass from the young midfielder found Chandran, who lofted the ball to find Święcicki in space in the corner of the box. The Polish winger whipped the ball across the goal to find Krzyżanowski in space 8 metres from goal. Krzyżanowski elected to shoot first-time, but could not keep the effort down as it cleared the goal.

As the minutes ticked down the Dragoons began to dominate the ball and continued to create several chances. Unfortunately, the Expats could not find the target or a way past Andrei Labudzeu in the Sparta goal.

Sparta Possession

With 18 minutes played, the visitors began to find themselves further up the pitch and had their first goal attempt. However, a shot from outside the box flew wide past the Dragoons’ goal.

Sparta looked to hit the ball long to exploit the Dragoons’ defence, but Drobny and Calabrese dealt with everything thrown at them. The Expats, however, struggled to recapture their earlier flow as the visitors enjoyed more control of the ball.

The home side began to regain momentum, probing the Sparta backline into the last 10 minutes of the half. Neat interchanging football saw Francesco Leuci travel through the midfield and drag a shot wide of the target.

Great Save

Moments later, the Dragoons came close to scoring the game’s first goal. Sparta struggled to clear their lines from a corner and the Dragoons recycled possession. Roman Bilovol beat a man and whipped a cross into the box that Jan Krzyżanowski headed into the air. Simon Calabrese tried to nod the ball goalwards, however, it bobbled off of a defender back into the Italian’s path. Calabrese drove a low shot at goal, but Labudzeu showed great reactions to palm the attempt wide.

From the following corner, Sparta could only clear as far as Fuhaš on the edge of the box. The attacker struck a shot at goal and on this occasion, a defender diverted the ball just wide of goal.

Dragoons Up the Ante

The Dragoons kept up the pressure and somehow failed to score in the 38th minute. Another corner from Forabosco caused havoc as the ball pinged around the 6-yard box. Unfortunately, no Dragoons man could tuck the ball into the net and Labudzeu bravely grasped the ball in a forest of legs.

Into the 45th minute, the Expats came desperately close to taking the lead. A quickly taken free-kick saw Chandran link up with Forabosco and get down the byline into the Sparta box. The Indian pulled a pass back to Forabosco, who took a touch and looked to work a shooting chance. A defender managed to nudge the ball away from the midfield magician and it fell kindly for Krzyżanowski. The Polish midfielder took a neat touch to set himself before curling an effort that bounced back into play off of the post. The rebound fell to Święcicki, however, a flag from the official on the side ended the move.

The Dragoons’ last chance of the half came in injury time. Brian Lemmen picked up a pass from Leuci and strode forward, picking out Fuhaš. The Expats striker turned with the ball and lashed a low shot just wide of the Sparta goal.

Shortly after, the halftime whistle blew with the two sides level at the break. The Expats had created a lot of chances but could not convert them into goals.

Krakow Dragoons FC vs Sparta Skrzeszowice half-time result (0-0)

Second Half

A second-half change saw Święcicki make way for Flavio Nkola.

The Angolan attacker almost made an immediate impact in the 49th minute. Chandran picked up a loose pass and set the ball into the path of Nkola. The speedster travelled with the ball and let fly with an effort from outside the box. The ball looked like it would be creeping into the bottom corner, only for Labudzeu to get down and send the shot wide.

Dragoons Take The Lead

After dominating the second half in the early stages, the Expats finally took the lead in the 55th minute. Great frontline pressure from Nkola and Krzyżanowski saw the Dragoons turnover possession high in the Sparta half. The ball ran to Fuhaš who laid a perfect pass behind the last defender to put Chandran through on goal. The Indian whirlwind elected to take a touch allowing a covering defender to get back and make a good tackle to block his effort. However, Jan Krzyżanowski continued his run forward to get to the rebound first and tucked the ball into the net to put the Dragoons ahead. A memorable moment for the youngster on his first start for the club!

Ballerina’s Entrance

On the hour mark, Sparta substitute Daniil Kupriienko theatrically threw himself to the floor under minimal contact looking for a penalty. The referee showed no interest, but no booking followed for a blatant attempt at deceiving the official.

The Expats made a double change on 64 minutes as Leuci and Bilovol made way for Szymon Urzędowski and Josh Dawson

The Storm Begins

Kupriienko was at it again three minutes later. The Sparta attacker, big and strong, felt a gust of wind and fell to the floor outside the box with Forabosco in close attention. This time, however, the referee bizarrely gave a free-kick much to the bemusement of the Italian midfielder.

The theatrics continued as Sparta won three free-kicks in quick succession. Bartolomei showed strong wrists to clear one of the attempts and another cleared the Dragoons bar.

Penalty Sparta!

Sparta continued to get forward, exploiting the space left by the removal of the Dragoons’ full-backs. A long throw into the Expats’ box saw an unchallenged flick-on fall to an opponent in the box. Drobny held up the Sparta man to get a foot to the ball, however, the visiting player threw himself to the floor and the referee immediately pointed to the spot giving the visitors the chance to level the score.

Dawid Jeleń stepped up to take the spot-kick and sent Bartolomei the wrong way to bring the score to 1-1.

The Dragoons almost immediately gifted Sparta the lead with a mishap at the back. Krzysztof Goldman looked to take advantage, breaking through the Expats’ defence to find himself in on goal. The attacker appeared to wait for another gust of wind to fall over, as he took a long time to shoot allowing Calabrese to get a foot in to stop the visitors adding a quick second.

Goalkeepers Called Into Action

On 74 minutes, Nkola showed great strength and resilience to shrug off the attempts to stop his run through the centre. The Angolan slid a pass to Fuhaš, giving the striker a great scoring chance. Substitute goalkeeper, Bartek Kapela had over ideas, however, coming off his line quickly to make a fine stop with his legs to deny the Dragoons the lead.

Moments later, Sparta went on the attack and thought they had taken the lead. Szymon Żukowski drove a shot from the edge of the box, but an excellent diving save from Bartolomei tipped the ball around the post.

Karma

The Dragoons had failed to find any rhythm to their play since the double change and almost paid the price. A poor free-kick just inside the Sparta half saw the ball fly back over the Expats’ defence. Drobny entered a footrace with Kupriienko, who fell to the floor liked he’d been shot by a sniper, under minimal contact just outside the box. The referee fell for the performance once again and pointed for a free-kick.

After Sparta’s protestations, the referee went to the side-line to discuss the decision with his assistant. Unbelievably, the referee changed his mind, disallowing the free-kick and pointed to the spot with just five minutes left to play. Thankfully, the visitors failed to convert the penalty as the ball struck the post and bounced out of play. I think you call that karma!

Neither side could fashion any forward motion as the game petered out. After only three minutes of injury time, the game ended with the Dragoons battling to gain a point.

A disappointing result for the Expats who had controlled the game until the referee fell for some of the theatrics of the visitors. At times, it was hard to know if it was football or ballet as the opponents pirouetted beautifully to the floor with the slightest of touches. Forget the Ballon D’or, Sparta deserve the Fallon D’Floor!

In all seriousness, the Expats had created chance after chance in the first half and would have likely won the game if they had taken the opportunities when they arose.

Krakow Dragoons FC vs Sparta Skrzeszowice full-time result (1-1)

Next Up

The Dragoons face 13th position Juvenia Prandocin next. The sides have faced each other twice earlier this season in the Puchar Polski and the league. The Dragoons came out as victors on both occasions, winning 2-1 at home in the cup and 3-0 away in the league.

Posted on Text: Dave Burch Visual Editing: Daniel Silva

Dragoons

83Lorenzo Bartolomei (ita)
5Simon Calabrese (ita)
6Brian Lemmen (ned)
8Enrico Forabosco (fin/ita) 71'
11Rohit Chandran (ind)
13Kuba Drobny (pol) 4 88'
14Roman Bilovol (arg) 2
16Francesco Leuci (ita) 97
26Jan Krzyżanowski (pol) 28 55'
29Vałdzis Fuhaš (blr)
94Błażej Święcicki (pol) 10
2Josh Dawson (eng) 14
4Sasha Arshakian (ukr) 13
10Flavio Nkola (ang) 94 83'
18Edoardo Battaglion (ita)
19Piotr Hajnrych (pol)
24Andrea Latino (ita)
28Cedrick Mwamba (cod) 26
34Michael Syska-Lamb (sco)
97Szymon Urzędowski (pol) 16

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