Renwick Tuned in for BBC Defeat

28 Oct

Renwick claimed their first three points of the season against Belfast Bible College with a convincing 4-0 victory. The goals were shared between Aicken, R.  Cromie, Peoples and Hawthorne in a great team performance. The return of Gareth Smith was crucial in securing Renwick’s first Superleague clean sheet since February, when the Institute centre back partnered Andy Lynch in defence. Still facing a long list of unavailable players Renwick will be confident that they can build upon this result.

The team lined up at Cherryvale without talented right-back Luke Campbell and Michael Mitchell, who scored twice in Renwick’s first league encounter. The presence of Smith meant that Carson was moved to right-back and Joel Cromie was available from kick off and partnered Philip Aicken in attack. Renwick started brightly piling on a lot of early pressure in the first few minutes of Belfast Bible College’s Superleague campaign. The breeze behind the Elmwood side made McCullough’s kicking ressemble Sander Westerveld as the College defence floudered under long balls. Joel Cromie repeatedly got the better of the centre half in the air and flicked the ball on towards Philip Aicken. BBC’s keeper came quickly off his line but failed to hold the ball bobbling along the ground giving Aicken the opportunity to score his first of the season.

Aicken looking for another spill from the keeper

Ben heads clear

Carson put in a great performance on the right

Renwick come close again

Ali’s unusual pose for the week – Mark McCaveryesque?

Fresh from Stute action last night

McCullough was forced to use the Swansea City shirt to avoid a kit clash

Joel goes close to extending the lead

Belfast Bible College were struggling at the back but slowly crept into the game. They came close to an equaliser as a deflected shot threatened to loop over McCullough who was forced into a volleyball-style save as he ended up facing his own net. A few minutes later the BBC captain attempted a Maradona impersonation but failed and the miner infringement was spotted by the Chilean referee. Renwick were still threatening the Beeb’s goal regularly with the movement of Cromie J and Aicken terrifying the defence. A long ball picked out the Grange Rangers striker on the left who forced the keeper to commit before squaring a pass to his older brother who finished past desperate defenders. Robert  should have added to his tally when he had a clear-cut chance to make it 3-0 but failed connect with another cross, was his mind elsewhere? Phil Aicken was denied in the goal-mouth scramble that ensued by some brave defending from BBC’s female left back.

Renwick spot Maradona

McCollum building the attack

Cromie’s goal

Cromie’s miss

Heroic defending from Lucy

Michael considers attempting a Dion Dublin

Cromie tackle

Joel’s freekick floats over

Aicken put in his best performance so far this season and his skilful footwork forced the opposition to bring him down inside the box but the South American referee seemed to have his head buried in the sand and pointed for a goalkick. David Graham (making his second ever Renwick appearance) and Richard McKelvey replaced Pete Fallows and Ali McCollum after 40 mins giving Michael Hawthorne an opportunity in the centre of the pitch. Joel Cromie’s corners had caused BBC many problems with Hanna, Smith and Peoples attacking the ball. In front of his fans who had travelled from Donegal, Andrew Peoples rose at the back post, met the ball with a strong downwards header and made the score 3-0 before halftime.

Phil’s penalty appeal

People’s nods home the third goal

and acknowledges the cross


Again Renwick started the half brightly but with the wind at their backs BBC soon put the Elmwood side under pressure. Joel Cromie got his third assist of the game when he pulled the ball back allowing Michael Hawthorne to cap a strong performance with a good finish. Ali and Pete returned to the pitch replacing Robert and Michael and Renwick succeeded in withstanding ten minutes of consistant pressure without giving away any clear goal scoring opportunities. Gareth Smith kept the defence organised and Ben Hanna made several good clearances. Keen to protect his clean sheet McCullough switched to a 4-5-1 for the last 15 minutes and the three man centre midfield of Peoples, Fallows and Hawthorne proved inpenetrable. Chris Carson enjoyed the opportunity to show his attacking ability at right back and on the right wing. He was hauled down by the BBC goalkeeperand Cromie ref had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Hanna raced forward to take it but his shot was saved comfortably by the keeper and Renwick had to content themselves with a 4 goal victory.

Michael’s goal

Renwick refused to lie down under pressure

Great work rate from Peoples

Michael gets advice from Mr Peoples

Chilean fails to get his team out of a hole

McCullough will be relieved that Renwick bounced back so quickly from last week’s disappointment. There were strong performances with many players winning their individual battles against their opponents. BBC looked like a side playing their first league match and Renwick took full advantage. Securing a clean sheet is another major encouragment that will give confidence to the defence. Sadly next week is Renwick’s free gameweek but the side will hopefully be kept fresh with a 5-a-side training session. Renwick’s next opponents are fierce rivals Derryvolgie who a are undoubtedly still stinging from being dumped out of the Super Cup by Porter’s goal at the end of last season. Bayern Eunuchs clearly fancy themselves as title contenders and recorded a post match interview after drawing 2-2 with Derryvolgie. A result Renwick will look at with great interest.

Bayern Eunuch’s Post-Match Interview

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

Man of the Match: Gareth Smith

Gareth Smith nearly adds a goal to his impressive performance


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