On Saturday afternoon Lechia hosted Zaglebie Lubin or round 11 of the Ekstraklasa 2017/18 season. During the week there were some big changes at Lechia. Piotr Nowak stepped down as the head coach and Adam Owen took over. Adam has an impressive CV. He has also build a good relationship with the squad since joining the club in the Summer as part of the coaching staff.
This was Adam’s first match in charge of Lechia. This made him the 4th coach (manager) to make his debut in the Ekstraklasa this season. Lechia went into this match on 12th place with a total of 10 points and having yet to win a home game this season. Lubin have had a great season so far and were join top of the league with 19 points as we approached kick off.
Romario Balde has received a 3 match ban for his red card in last weekends match against Bruk-Bet. The main surprise to the team sheet was the absence of Patryk Lipski.
As the match kicked off Adam Owen was on the edge of his technical area directing his team, this is something we didn’t see too often for Nowak. Lechia began well and looked like they finally had a game plan, moving forward well and passing across the flanks instead of the recent long balls or one sided attacking. In the 13th minute came the first real opportunity after some nice link up play from Wawrzyniak, Milos and Marco, unfortunately Marco’s shot was saved by the Lubin keeper, Polacek. Just two minutes later Krasic tried to set up Marco but his cross was too high for the striker.
Possession was about 50/50 across both sides but Lechia seemed to be pressing Lubin with the majority of play in the Lubin half. In the 17th minute Nalepa gave away a free kick about 28 meters from the Lechia goal, luckily Lubin put their shot over the bar. In the 24th minute Marco went on the counter after a Lubin corner, he sprinted down the right wing but the Lubin defenders got back in time to clear the ball. Just moments later at the opposite end of the pitch, Kuciak was tested with an effort from outside the area by Swierczok.
In the 32nd minute it was Swierczok again who put his shot wide of Kuciak’s goal. Marco tried to set up Krasic in the 37th minute with a pass across the box but the Lubin defence were alert and cleared the ball from danger. As we approached half time Lechia were trying everything to get the opening goal with long range attempts from both Milos and Wawrzyniak. Krasic also had free kick in a dangerous position but it amounted to nothing after he put the ball into the area.
Half Time 0:0
Within a minute of the the second half starting Lubin were straight on the attack and won a corner, Kuciak was strong enough to collect the ball in his crowded penalty area. Oliveira made way for Wolski in the 52nd minute who immediately showed some skilful footwork on the ball. In the 58th minute Krasic left the field after it looked like he picked up a knock and was replaced by Flávio. Just 1 minute later Flávio made a huge impact after he sent the keeper the wrong way and scored, his brother Marco made the perfect pass to assist the goal scorer, a macarena style goal celebration by the Lechia players followed 1:0!
A mistake by the Lechia defence in the 66th minute saw Lubin one on one with Kuciak but their shot was wide of the goal, a big let off for Lechia. Lubin began to put Lechia under pressure, in the 71st minute Kuciak was called into action again when he needed to make a save after a Lubin corner. In the 87th minute after another Lubin corner, Kuciak punched the ball out only as far as the waiting Jaroslaw Jach who tried an impressive bicycle kick which really tested the reactions of Kuciak as he had to pull off an equally impressive save.
Wolski went on the counter attack in the 88th minute as he ran the length of the pitch only to see his shot saved. In the dying seconds of stoppage time Janoszka but a shot wide of Kuciak’s goal but it looked like Kuciak would have had it covered anyway.
Final Score 1:0
Man of the match
My man of the match goes to – Dusan Kuciak.
Post Match Press Conference
Adam Owen made the following comments in his post match press conference – “I am satisfied with the result. As for our way of playing, we implemented a strategy for this meeting. We went for the victory, and this is the most important thing. I think our game will look better over time. These three points will definitely add to our confidence. This match has given me a lot of material that we will analyse and then work on training. It is a pity that we have now have an international break because after such a victory, in which we finally beat our rival at home and without losing the goal, we would like to play immediately another match. But as we have a break now, we will definitely use it for training and hard work.”
“Patryk Lipski was left out of the team today due to the fact that he has some physical backlog that was visible in his game in previous matches which he must make up. I talked to him about it and my decision came with understanding. As for Flavio Paixao, I am happy with his goal. He deserved this goal with his hard work, it was not luck. I believe in hard work, not luck.”
As we head into another international break we have to wait two weeks before the next match.
Legia Warsaw Vs Lechia Gdansk – Sunday 15th October 18:00