Encouraging positivity from Omonia Youth FC teams

February 21, 2023

There were encouraging performances and results from the many teams of community grassroots club Omonia Youth FC, sponsored by Diamond Corp. Ltd

Mary Tryphona and Christian Noble’s Under 12 Gold Tiger Girls were before the match given targets to try and achieve during the game. These targets were to short when they could and to improve communication. Happily, the girls met both match day targets. The squad knew that the game would be a tough one as they had already been beaten by the same team earlier in the season but there was a steely determination this among all the players. Olivia and Gabriella were the defensive duo in the first half and they were so good the opposition simply could not get past them. Elysia and Beanie rotated in goal and with a solid defensive unit, the girls created so many goal scoring it was inevitable they would grab the opener. Zoss’ superb pass to Ava resulted in a goal. The girls went in to the break 1-0 up and the half-time talk was run by the girls and they discussed what went well and what was needed in the second half. In the second half the Omonia Youth girls were pressed into their own half as the opposition came out intent on drawing level and their pressure paid off when they equalised. The Omonia Youth girls never gave up and reasserted themselves. Chances were created and Lara had some great efforts but were blocked. Gabriellla never stopped running. An unfortunate passage of play led to the opposition grabbing the winning goal but the result was incidental in a match where the Omonia Youth girls played their best game of the season with so many positive to take forward. Player of the Match was awarded to Gabriella.

Myri Demetriou and Kyri Eletheriou’s Under 14 White were in League Cup action and they progressed to the next round thanks to a 3-1 win. It was a gritty performance from our boys today but most pleasing was the boys’  levels of improvement, their willingness to sign up to a high energy press and counter pressing game, with positive passing and movement that is really starting to bear fruit. In the first half they battled hard, while playing some really incisive football and they took the lead from a very composed finish by Andre, rounding the goalkeeper, after another great through ball from Kleanthis. From a set piece a bullet header by Kordian from another superb cross by Andrew made it 2-0 and the Under 14 White were in charge. They restricted the opposition to very few clear chances, but still needed goalkeeper Alessandro to make some smart and important stops. Approaching half time, a lapse in concentration was punished and the position were back in the game at 2-1. In the second half, faced with an opposition with renewed energy and belief, the Under 14 White restored their two-goal lead thanks to a barnstorming run by Man of the Match Andre through the heart of their defence and cool finish made it 3-1 and that is how the match ended. It was amazing performance and every boy was absolutely superb.

Demi Shiamishis and Vas Soteriou’s Under 13 Girls played probably their best game of the season. The girls executed their instructions perfectly, shooting on sight and winning the ball back within five seconds of losing the ball. Within five minutes they were 1-0 up with a scrambled goal from Andreana. Katina continued to dictate from her defensive midfield position and played as a true captain. Bella continued where she has left off with a dominant display at the back. The Under 13 Girls doubled their lead thanks to Georgia, who along with Amelia and Emily gave the team a lot of energy in midfield.  The girls continued to be dominant in the second half but with the opposition able to bring on five substitutes, the momentum of the game swung their way and they duly grabbed a goal back. The Omonia Youth girls were not to be denied though, and restored their two-goal advantage thanks to Amelia. They then saw out the game for a 3-1 win. Special mention to Isha who continued to impress in goal, to Andreana who offers us a lot of energy up front and to Sophia who is improving every game she plays. Coach Demi was fulsome in his after match assessment as he said: “…I couldn’t be more proud of the girls today and look forward to continuing to look after the girls for the rest of the season.” Player of the Match was awarded to Katina Georgiou.

Michael Pieri and Harry Theodorou’s Under 18 White were dumped out of the cup in a match whose score line hardly reflected the action on the pitch. The after match assessment attempted to make the boys understand that football as a sport very often mirrors real life and this was evidence that as in life, football does not always give you what you deserve. Playing a cup quarter final against a team a division higher and who remain unbeaten in their league, it was always going to be a tough match but the Under 18 White started off superbly, were dominant and created many positive situations. The opposition goalkeeper was by far the busier but they could not get the all-important first goal. Having lost a key midfielder to injury in the first 20 minutes this was to prove an unfortunate portent of things to come. With the match still goalless, the second half began much like the first, with the Under 18 White boys again the sharper and more creative. In a swift attacking move, they hit the post and with the goal at his mercy the centre forward skied the rebound. Within a minute OF that, they went goal down; self-inflicted but undeserved. The opposition goalkeeper was again called upon multiple times before they got a second but even at 2-0 down the Under 18 White boys created chances and when they hit the inside of the post and the ball bounced out to their player, it was more evidence that it was not to be their day. A desperate attempt to get back in the game left them exposed and the opposition scored a third. The boys were rightly disappointed but not disheartened as they played a great match. The opposition were very sporting, the atmosphere on the sidelines was respectful and appreciative of each team – a heartening throwback to when each set of boys were playing uncompetitive football and the result meant little. Man of the Match was awarded to Igor who was a constant threat and but for a lick of paint could’ve had a couple of goals. The Under 18 White will now look forward to their half term trip to Cyprus to celebrate their final season in youth football.

Sophia Karanicholas’ Under 12 Girls were challenged to play a team a year up and they were stepped up and were remarkable, winning 2-0. The girls were brave in every sense, their performance was helped by the positive encouragement from all of them towards each other throughout. The girls  were fearless going in for challenges and 50:50 balls and the obvious difference in physicality and strength soon became irrelevant as the Under 12s brought far more passion, enthusiasm and intensity to the game. The girls linked up superbly in a fast paced game and had the confidence to take on players double their height many a time. They really brought their best selves and were simply inspiring. A 2-0 win was well deserved. Players of the Match were given to Ria for what was described as a phenomenal debut; she was fearless in her defending and to Sophia who loves playing in goal but was we challenged to play outfield and was a force to be reckoned with. Nothing got past her in defence.  Goals were scored by Melina and Aanya.

Zeno Vryonides’ Under 15 Green suffered a 5-3 loss. The team struggled with numbers due to players out with injuries and illness. A few early mistakes gifted the opposition two quick but once the boys woke up, they took control of the game. The team knew without their pacey striker they had to pass and move to ball up field and in numbers to put the opposition under pressure. They gave it their all and scored three goals. After a monumental effort in the first, having no substitutes saw fatigue set in and with the opposition able to bring on fresh legs, this new energy got back in the game and scored three unanswered second half goals to win the game. It was a defeat but with plenty of positives to take from the game. Georgio was named Man of the Match for his fantastic control and work ethic in midfield today. Goals were scored by Aleks – a fantastic free kick from far out and two goals from Michael.

Jay Cemal, Jack Markou and Demi Christou’s Under 12 Green repeated their result from last ago as they again won 7-3. The boys went a goal down early on but once again kept their composure and never let their heads drop. The togetherness among this group is is amazing and they are now learning about keeping their shape and positional sense with and without the ball.

Samuel Arthur and John Frangou’s Under 13 Green played out goal-fest in a 5-5 thriller. Even though they had several players out, the boys were unfazed. They traded goals with the opposition, with the Under 13 Green going up, and then the opposition equalizing. With 15 minutes left, it was 4-4 and the Under 13 Green managed to score. Having taken the lead late in the game, the plan was to defend but the opposition clawed one back right at the end. In a thoroughly enjoyable game, the score and the result was deserved for the way both teams fought. The positives to take from the game is the way the boys are now gelling and playing their football. The urgency is there, so is the decision making and they are starting to understand each other. After the match Samuel said: “ It is nice to see so many happy faces when the whistle blew at full time. Special mention to the opposition coach who was a real sportsman and played with the Omonia Youth philosophy. He didn’t allow any negativity from his team or back chat to the ref.” The match was refereed by Hollie who has now refereed 6 games. Hollie owned it and was in full control and was confident. Man of the Match was rightly given to the whole team who all put in fantastic shift in a fantastic match.

Should you feel enthused and want to know more about Omonia Youth FC, you can contact the club at omoniayouthfootballclub@hotmail.com, via the contact page on the club’s website www.omoniayouthfc.com as well as following the club on twitter @OmoniaYouthFC and Instagram @omoniayouthfc1994.