Toyota Yaris La Liga World Live Commentary: Girona FC Vs Melbourne City FC
Written by: Punit Tripathi
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We'll get you the match report and press conferences right away.
90+3' Its curtains, and we've seen two 6-0 already! What will the Manjappada and David James hope for tomorrow? On the pitch, both teams gave their all. Pre-season is synonymous to poor fitness, and yet, both sides were good on the ball. Melbourne were outclassed, but they had their moments. Girona, on the other hand, stamped their class on the game. Well-drilled defence, a midfield that tricks, and an attack that uses space well, they've got it all. The Reds ended the match with a Viking Clap, and the Manjappada stand erupts.
90+1' Is David James happy with this? Or is he worried? The man must be having mixed emotions at the moment. Melbourne City FC leave India in 30 minutes. They've to take a flight. Many goes on the attack again, wins a corner.
90' Three minutes of added time. Pedro PORRO gets to the scoresheet. Typical cross down the left, typical headed goal. Porro placed it smartly, away from the custodian. Full marks to the youngster.
89' The attendance looks close to 10,000. Girona must be feeling at home, then. If you don't know the reference to this, read our Media interaction with its players earlier.
88' Poor ball from Bouzanis. Easy throw in to Girona. Is defended with caution, and Gimenez brings a Melbourne player down in the central park.
87' Girona waste a free kick, with a shot that went into the stands. They're not trying to go for the kill anymore. Doesn't look like that, at least.
86' Melbourne is happy to defend. Clearing for life is what they're doing at the moment. Girona has not let the ball go away for one moment.
84' Cross comes in from Many, who's now playing down the right. Is kicked out for a throw in. Melbourne try to string a pass for a forward player, but Girona holds fort.
83' Aleix Garcia Serrano is the name for Man of the Player for this one. Media box choice, not the official name.
82' Bouzanis is playing out of the back. Misspasses one, is shot wide by Many.
81' Ball into the box of Girona, is cleared out for a Melbourne throw in. Caceres is brought down, looked like a free-kick, but the ref points for goalkick.
79' Eusebio, even with his team winning 5-0, is shouting instructions from the touchline. Passion, rightly placed.
78' Its imperative that Serrano trains a lot of corners with the centre-backs. They've looked in tandem at set-pieces. Many tries to create one with a wall-pass, but is for a corner. Good tackle from Melbourne.
77' The referee restores the game. Curled in from the corner, Guirado wins the header, but into the palms of the goalkeeper. Good, clean collection.
76' Porro wins a corner for Girona. Serrano stands over it. A Melbourne City FC player is down after he was elbowed in the Girona box. The game is halted.
75' Melbourne's touch seems to have deserted them. The Blues are having a tough time controlling aerial balls. Muniesa is playing alongside Guirado at the heart of the defence.
74' Many hits the post! The man has looked frightening down the left. Can he score another one?
73' It's the water break at the JLN. The players who started the game are looking famished to say the least. They needed this one, with conditions in Kochi overcast. It's been humid, very humid, in the last few days.
73' Brattan tries to change wings with a low ball, but it's out for a throw in to Girona. The man has been shadowed in lesser space.
72' Good thing for Melbourne. They would know where they need to work. Facing a team of this quality is always a boon in pre-season.
71' Will we see a repeat of the scoreline? Will Girona pump in six? Or will Melbourne get one back? It's all set for both!
70' Another shot from distance, another shot from wide. The goalkeeper is agitated with the space being provided to the Girona attackers.
69' MANY is one the scoresheet after four attempts! Not like he would want to, though. The winger pushed into the net after melee and a collision.
68' Many creates one out of nothing, but his shot is feeble. Goalkeeper collects easily.
67' Arce is playing as the third centre back. Gaining some good experience playing alongside Guirado, the young lad.
66' Many is brought down by Melbourne, but it's not a foul. City control possession in the midfield, but lose it in the Girona half.
65' Some Melbourne players are looking a little jaded. Scoreline, tiredness, and the humidity, all playing their roles.
64' A long shot from distance is parried off by the Melbourne goalkeeper. Corner to Girona. The stadium goes into a mini-eruption in amazement.
63' Girona make four changes at the same time. Marc Vito Brezmes comes under the bar for Bounou, the Moroccan shot stopper.
62' Pons is acting as a right-wing back now. Defensive midfielder, central midfielder, wing-back, what more can this man do? One-on-one, Manzanera has a heavy touch and that fails him.
61' Melbourne try to create something out from a melee. Well defended again. Order of the day.
60' Girona haven't looked tired one bit. A little slow, pre-seasonic blues, but not tired. Two reasons - fitness, and less running and more usage of free spaces.
59' Freire and Serrano try crosses down the right, but both are fended off with ease.
58' Serrano is standing over the free-kick, and Bernardo shoots from distance. Corner to Girona, as it goes over with a deflection.
57' Girona look to have changed it to a back three, something their centre-backs are comfortable with. Pulled down, Soni wins a free-kick for Girona.
55' One aspect of Girona's game- the switching off wings - has been absolutely top notch. It's better that anything Indian audiences has ever seen.
54' Pons has played with freedom, moving to the right wing and centrally with regular ease. Control the tempo in the opposition half quite comfortably.
52' Brattan brings down Freire in the centre, and medical attention is warranted by the ref. Bad challenge, but didn't look as menacing from far.
51' Serrano curls one from the corner, and Lopez heads in with a thumping, but well placed header. Typical of a centre-back.
50' Manzanera down the right, chips to Porro, who shoots, but is saved. Corner to Girona FC.
49' Cacares is playing a little deep, helping out Brattan. Melbourne create a chance down the right. Is saved by some good goalkeeping.
48' Melbourne, a side that controlled the ball in the last game on the ground, are playing high balls now. Pedro Porro is trying to make the right wing his own. Three attacks in three minutes from his side.
47' Melbourne kickstart the game. Fornaroli looks to force things, but gives a throw in to Girona. Spanish side makes two attempts in two minutes.
46' The teams walk out, and Serrano makes the traditional entry from the centre of the pitch. Some footballers continue that trend throughout their careers.
Marc Muniesa looks to be done with this one. Walks out and takes his place on the bench. Will he play a further role? We'll let you know once the rest of the team is in.
Kerala were trailing 2-0 against Melbourne in the last game. GULF IN CLASS. Spanish flair has rode over Australian fervour in the first 45. Will we see a twist in the tale in the second?
The music is on in Kochi, and the players are warming up. Will we see Cavallo and Bouzanis come on after the restart?
It's been Girona all over, and we'd be lying if we say differently. Melbourne, though, have had two chances that should've seen the back of the net. Fornaroli will try and forget the big one. The players have all gone into the tunnel at the JLN Stadium, with the crowd finally showing its face. Youngsters can be expected to be given a run-in, with both clubs trying different combinations. We're expecting more goals in the second 45, and Girona surely can be named the dominating side.
45+1' One added minute. Freire is certainly making the right noises in pre-season. Looks set for a long haul. Free kick to Melbourne in their own half, after their player is brought down.
45' Attack on the other hand, and the ball is just over Colon's head. That was close again! Freire beats a player, and passes it in to Serrano. The man curls it into the goalkeeper's gloves.
43' Goalkick, as a volley from Colon brushes the side netting. IT SHOULD'VE BEEN THE FIRST FOR MELBOURNE. Ball over the top, Fornaroli one-on-one, should've placed in the corner. Places wide off the goal.
42' Melbourne try a ball from over the top, but Bernardo is up to the task. Heads it to his teammate. The side looks in sync with the plans. They understand positions, and time and space.
41' Whenever in pressure, play it back. Its as simple as that for Girona. They're happy with the kind of possession they're controlling at the moment, with few chances for Melbourne sandwiched within.
39' The match has slowed down a little. Girona are concentrating on passes and creating chances now. Melbourne win a free kick, after a foul in the middle of the park. McGree tries to create something, but his last touch is a little wide.
38' Warren Joyce has cut a pensive figure on the touchline. Hasn't really looked agitated, or excited. Pre-season surely, but the man knows that these challenges await his side.
37' The Manjappada banner is out. They're here, but in smaller numbers. Also, they're not flaunting the yellow. That is reserved for the home side. Positive gesture?
35' The Spanish Manzanera and the Honduran Colon have looked in sync. They've been toying with the Melbourne defence, literally. Cacares comes on for Vidosic, who limps with an injury.
33' McGree tries a brilliant one. Turns deftly, and strikers. Just wide and the audience goes into a collective 'Hawwww'! The audience has gradually increased. It's not majestic, but it's still good.
32' Copovi looks so calm. Melbourne need to press him more into making mistakes. The strikers of Girona combine, with Manzanera playing Colon in. Colon tries to place it, but is poor. The goalkeeper collects.
31' Free kick to Melbourne, as a City player is challenged illegaly. ANother one. Two in the same minute, but he's picked up by Girona's player. Football fairplay.
30' Muniesa is back. He's playing with freedom again. Runs in the opposition half, jogs in his own. Quality, sheer quality from the left back.
29' Melbourne City players have had a bad evening, physicality. The players have not looked comfortable in challenges and 50-50 chances.
28' Copovi has been what Brattan was for Melbourne in the last game. Girona shoot over from six yards! It should've been fourth!
27' Freire tries the miraculous, fails. Girona have a throw in down the left.
26' Melbourne need to settle down. Girona has just had two days' practice. They can surely turn this around with a little more intent and conviction.
25' Colon makes it three! How many will Melbourne see now? Are they being treated with their own medicine?
23' Muniesa finally looks to be on left back. Isn't running as regularly as he was. His control, though, looks such Catalanic.
22' Brattan hasn't been allowed enough space this time around. Girona knows opposition. They haven't made the same mistakes Blasters did. He looks abject.
21' Girona look happy with the two-goal lead Copovi at it again. Changes wings from the centre easily. Attack from Freire, ball flies over.
20' The game is restarted by a goalkick, but City lose possession early. Girona is not shy of playing the ball back for recycling.
19' Will he challenge for the starting spot against the imperious Christian Stuani? We'll have to wait and wait. The man, though, is showing his potential, well. Copovi transfers the play with a smooth change to the wings. Ball comes in, is mishit by Colon. What a gameplay. What a treat for Indian football fans!
17' Manzanera it is, AGAIN! What a conversion! What a through, what a goal! He just placed it into the corner with a deft touch! Brilliance, and Spanish class written all over it.
17' Cross comes in from the left for Melbourne, is converted to an attack by Girona.
16' Two attempts to dribble into the box in two mintues. Can Melbourne get their goal and get even? It will be a massive, massive one!
14' Melbourne attack down the left. Played back into the midfield, and the attack goes down. They re-circulate.
13' Melbourne are trying to up the ante. Their midfielders are showing a little extra vigour now, from Halloran to McGree to Wales. Meanwhile, Brattan's attempted ball is intercepted.
12' Girona are getting back to their paces, and are starting to show their true quality. ANd its also an advertisement, of what to expect in the La Liga. Such tactical use of time and space.
11' Manzanera it is! Girona it is! Brilliant ball down the right, the striker finds space, and slots it into the bottom right corner. First blood, drawn!
09' Girona FC are playing the ball out of the back. The pair of Lopez and Bernardo look very calm on the ball.
08' What is Marc Muniesa? He seems to have been given a free role. He's everywhere! Girona tries to dink a ball over the Melbourne defence, but the goalkeeper collects comfortably at the end.
07' McGree looks so comfortable on the ball. The traditional fleet of a left-footed footballer. Finds space with a dink. Colon, meanwhile, tries to create something down the left. Fails.
06' Brattan is passing instructions to his defence. The man wants his backline to calm down and concentrate on keeping the ball down. The atypical City midfielder, it seems!
05' Good curling ball into the box for Melbourne, but they could not find the right space. Girona attack down the right, with Muniesa aggressing from the wing.
04' Melbourne are not trying too hard at the moment. The team looks content playing out from the back. Shot comes in, is deflected. McGree's attempt, created by Halloran.
03' Girona players spoke a lot about refereeing yesterday. The man is under scanner tonight, or is he? Both teams have comfortably exchanged and controlled possession so far.
01' First tackle, first minute. Halloran is taken down, and he looks a little disturbed. Pons is already looking fast on the ball. Melbourne attack down the right, but concede a throw in. Poor ball control from Riley.
01' Girona FC kickstart proceedings. The side looks to be playing in a 4-3-3 formation, in sync with their new manager. Warren Joyce, meanwhile, has continued his favoured 4-2-3-1.
Luke Brattan holds the key for Melbourne from the midfield, while Aleix Serrano will be the playmaker for the La Liga side. Melbourne are starting from left to right.
The photoshoots are on. We're minutes away from the kick-off. This could be one of the best games India has witnessed in recent times. Good luck to both sides.
The National Anthem sets the pace for the game as both teams shake hands with officials and beyond. Will the defence of Girona stand out, or will Melbourne outwit the side in Red-and-White?
The teams walk out at the majestic JLN Stadium, Kochi, and for the first time ever, a European side walks out on an Indian pitch for its pre-season. This is no less history in Indian football.
We're 10 minutes away from the kick off now. The Melbourne City bench is in the dugout. The team has acclimatised to the conditions well, and Girona FC can expect a tough battle of sorts tonight. Will Australia make it big? Or will the Spanish dominance continue?
Where's the crowd? The Yellow Army should have been here? When the tournament was awarded to them, it was one of Kerala's more important properties, hypothetically.
Both teams are out and, Miss Khuri Irani takes over the hosting of the show. We have Jose Antonio Cachaza on the pitch, the head of operations of La Liga in the country.
Melbourne City FC starting XI: Galekovic, Jamieson, Delbridge, Atkinson, Graham, McGree, Wales, Brattan, Vidosic, Halloran, Fornaroli
Girona FC starting XI: Bounou, Bernardo, Lopez, Muniesa, Caraballo, Serrano, Friere, Pons, Copovi, Colon, Manzanera
Melbourne City FC and Girona FC are currently training on the stadium, but the stands have a deserted look. Both teams are showcasing their quality as we get ready for the second match of the La Liga Toyota Yaris pre-season tournament. The Jawaharlal Nehru pitch looks ready.
6:20 PM Hello everyone, it is a wonderful evening here in Kochi and it is a delight to host the Toyota Yaris La Liga World opener here. Although the weather is overcast, we hope it will not be a spoilsport such a high voltage game between Melbourne City and Girona FC. This is your host Punit Tripathi, stay tuned and enjoy the commentary with Khel Now.
Published: Fri Jul 27, 2018 08:53 PM IST