GIG2023 | Football Falkland Islands vs Isle of Man

Falklands give Isle of Man scare in opening football fixture

On a very hot summers afternoon in Guernsey, the Falklands put in a spirited performance against defending Island Games champions Isle of Man. They restricted them to half chances in the first half an hour with the only moment of real worry being when captain Josh Peck headed cleared off the line. Despite an early booking Monfesu was winning his battle on the right with the opposition danger man Garland and the midfield three of Adeoye, East and Reyes were closing down the opposition continuously.

This forced the Isle of Man team to play a long ball game, hitting numerous diagonals up to there tall striker. The Falklands unfortunate luck with injuries then continued with Dayne Gilson-Clarke being forced off with a calf issue in the half hour. Only a minute later, a hopeful long ball through the middle from Isle of Mann caused confusion and Peters brought down Isle of Mann’s striker for a penalty. That was duly dispatched for 1-0, and 2-0 followed about 5 minutes later, direct from a free kick. As the ball was played in from the left the Isle of Mann striker comically went to ground under pressure which distracted Peters as he misjudged the flight of the ball.

Having played so well, but finding themselves 2-0 down, the Falklands could have been excused for letting their heads go down. But that couldn’t have been further from the case, when at the start of the second half Ethan George, who was the early replacement for Gilson-Clarke almost broke clear twice causing Isle of Mann real concern in their back line. Ethan Gilson-Clarke, who was a willing runner all game and was putting in a fantastic shift, holding up the ball to get the Falklands up the pitch on a number of occasions and consistently made great progress with the ball at his feet, beating numerous Isle of Mann players in the process. As tiredness began to creep in, the Falklands conceded a third on the hour when another long diagonal looked to be under control, but Peck slipped at just the wrong moment and the dangerous Garland profited, taking a good touch and finishing confidently, beyond Peters. The Falklands stuck to their task right to the final whistle and none showed this more than Shaun East, who broke up play continuously. Injuries to Monfesu and Dayne Gilson-Clarke will be a blow for the upcoming match against Ynys Mon, but the squad will be rightly proud of their opening performance.

Thanks to our lovely roomie Chris Eynon from the Penguin News for his match report.

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