Valiant DMU football teams beaten in Varsity matches at Aylestone Park
In two fiercely contested varsity matches at Aylestone Park Football Club, both the De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) men’s and women’s football teams were narrowly defeated by the University of Leicester (UoL).
The women’s team were unable to take full advantage of a large spell of pressure that they imposed on their opponents before ultimately losing out on penalties while the men’s team struggled to break down a strong UoL defence in their 3-1 defeat.
Firstly the women’s team took on the University of Leicester in front of a lively crowd that had turned up in their droves to the ground where England legend Gary Lineker used to ply his trade.
The early stages of the game produced few chances and the DMU women’s team may have felt aggrieved at the number of referee’s decisions that went against them.
DMU looked the most likely to threaten and had deprived their opposition of opportunities before a free-kick led to UoL striking the post, and then working the ball into another shooting opportunity and taking a 1-0 lead with a neat chip over the DMU goalkeeper.
After the break, there was controversy at both ends of the field as DMU had penalty appeals waived away by the referee before UoL went up the other end and were awarded a penalty of their own.
With chances being at a premium in the game it looked as though the score would be getting away from DMU before the penalty kick was hit wide of the goalkeeper’s left-hand post.
The penalty miss appeared to galvanise a DMU side looking to get back in to the game as they started to produce more and more chances with plenty of crosses coming in from the right-hand side.
Finally, with five minutes left to play, the equaliser did come for DMU. A delightful cross played in by the right-back was prodded in to give DMU a goal that their performance had certainly merited.
As neither side were able to find a winner in the remaining minutes, the game was settled by a penalty shootout which UoL went on to win 4-3 and inflict defeat upon a DMU side that deserved much more from their efforts.
The men’s game kicked off under the floodlights with the crowd by this stage having a reached a boisterous level and with the DMU men’s team looking to avenge a harsh defeat in the previous match.
The game started at a breathless pace with challenges flying in from both sets of players with the referee largely happy to keep his cards in his pocket.
However, the rough intensity of the game seemed to have led to the downfall of DMU as they conceded a penalty midway through the first half which UoL duly dispatched to take a 1-0 lead.
Not to be disheartened by going a goal down, DMU equalised within two minutes of conceding with the finest piece of play of the evening.
DMU worked the ball from back to front with some clever passing play to release the winger through one-on-one with the goalkeeper and he made no mistake in sliding the ball underneath him to level the scores.
From there DMU struggled to make chances as UoL looked to have learned from the goal they conceded and played a tighter game at the back and in midfield.
Indeed it was UoL who managed to sneak ahead again before half time as their centre back climbed highest from a corner to head home and give them a 2-1 lead at the interval.
There was very little to separate the two sides after the break with neither side producing many notable shooting opportunities.
The only further action of note in the game was a scrappy free-kick which the DMU goalkeeper managed to parry away initially before the rebound was slotted in to make the score 3-1 and UoL were able to see the game out from there.
Both the men’s and women’s team put in great performances and can consider themselves unlucky on a night where UoL had the rub of the green to take two Varsity victories for themselves.
Ellen Kerbey, who played as a striker for DMU women’s football, said: “It’s obviously a heart-breaking way to lose a match but we had to step up and take penalties for the team, but it is the worst way to lose.
“It was a great occasion though, it was such a good feeling to be able to go out there with your name on your shirt, as part of a team in a massive occasion, it was just great to be a part of.
“The crowd put on a brilliant atmosphere, there was a lot of support for DMU it was just a shame we couldn’t get the win for them.”
Posted on: Tuesday 24 March 2015