Story Of The Match: Open Cup Qualifying Round 2 vs Harpos 10/21/18
One day after our victory against Indios in the first round of the US Open Cup, US Soccer announced that we would play Harpos in the second round of the tournament. Going into this match we knew it would test our character and perseverance, after not beating Harpos in the Colorado Premier League in over two years.
Our starting eleven saw some slight changes to the back line as well as our striker but our midfield remained unchanged. During the warmup, the boys looked ready and eager to solidify their spot as the best amateur soccer club in Colorado.
As predicted, we came out extremely fast in every area of the pitch, winning duels and challenges, and holding possession well. We generated four changes before the half time whistle blew and almost converted one but was called back for offside. Going into the second half, the scored remained 0-0.
We knew that Harpos would come out flying after being second best throughout the first half. Within one minute of the second half, Harpos scored their first goal. We knew it would be extremely had to get the equalizer, but we kept out hopes high.
In the 74th minute, Nabil found himself unmarked after a poorly cleared ball off of a free kick to head in our equalizer! The story of the match after Nabil’s goal was the same as the first half. Both sides were generating chances but could not capitalize. The whistle blew at 90+2’, extra time awaits.
Feeling the effects of fatigue and adrenaline wearing off, the two halves of extra time felt much longer than 30 minutes. Harpos had two chances that were saved very well by Moberg. We had two chances as well but could not convert them into a lead. With one minute left, Peter had one last chance to score off of a volley but the Harpos keeper carried well.
Harpos had the first penalty of the game. The ball was hit hard and low to Moberg’s right side but he got fingertips on it and it bounced off the post for a wonderful save. Peter stepped up and slotted his penalty beautifully.
Harpos had their second penalty as every fan sat and watched on nervously. Moberg guessed the right way again and came out with another incredible save to deny Harpos first two efforts. Cesar was our second taker and sent the Harpos keeper the wrong way, slotting his effort in.
The third Harpos penalty was converted very well, sending Mo the wrong way and hitting the upper corner. Paul was our third penalty taker. The Harpos keeper guessed the right way but Paul’s technique and placement was perfect, netting our third PK.
Harpos stepped up to take their must-make, fourth penalty. They did so in great fashion. The pressure was on. Jake took our fourth penalty and the Harpos keeper guessed the right way, denying our early victory. With four chances taken for both sides, the shootout was 2-3 FC Denver.
The visiting side made the long walk to take their fifth and final penalty. Moberg, again, came out with another flash of brilliance. Guessing the right way, Moberg made his third save of the night to take FC Denver to the third round of the US Open Cup!
After two years of being second best in the Colorado Premier League, we had finally done it, on an even bigger stage!
USOC Round 3
In the third round of the US Open Cup, we drew GAM United. Last year, we met them in the first round and came out on top 3-0. This squad has improved since last season and it will be a heated match up. Keep an eye out for all of the upcoming match details on our Facebook here!