Monaro slams Capital Football for short turnaround

The Monaro Panthers have slammed Capital Football for forcing them to play less than 48 hours after playing in the FFA Cup.

The Panthers' slow start reflected their short turn around as they fell behind early against Gungahlin United and never recovered, losing 3-1 at Gungahlin Enclosed on Saturday afternoon.

Monaro coach Zoran Glavinic spoke of his disappointment in the Panthers being forced to back up less than two days after their last game.

Gungahlin's Thomas Muller tries to go past Monaro's Stefan Todoroski.

Gungahlin’s Thomas Muller tries to go past Monaro’s Stefan Todoroski.

They went down to Woden-Weston 4-2 at Woden Park on Thursday night.

"It's very disappointing that Capital Football didn't agree to our terms," Glavinic said.

"Less than 48 hours to go and play another professional game is not good enough and it reflected in our start and our first half.

"We got back into it but it's really tough to turn around like that, it was just too short."

Gungahlin opened the scoring less than two minutes into the contest when Ben Obst intercepted a misdirected Monaro free kick inside his own half and took the ball upfield before finding Thomas Muller, who buried the ball in the bottom corner.

It was hard to see a way back for Monaro when Gungahlin had their second goal inside the opening 20 minutes, this time through a Josh Gaspari penalty, after Tommy Krklec was clipped from behind just inside the box.

The Panthers did get a first-half goal of their own with Sam Smith taking his chance after he found himself one on one with the keeper after a Gungahlin defender lost his footing while chasing the bouncing ball.

Smith's effort was cancelled out less than five minutes later when a superb through ball put Antony Timotheou  away and as the keeper raced out Timotheou calmly tapped the ball past the Panthers' No.1 allowing Muller to bury the ball into an empty net.

There were strange scenes at half-time as the referee limped off having aggravated a hamstring injury.

Luckily a Gungahlin under-20s player, who had played in the curtain raiser and stuck around to watch the main game, was a qualified referee and he stepped in to run the line while one of the assistant referees picked up the whistle.

Gungahlin had no shortage of chances to extend their lead in the second half but continually put the ball wide or straight at the keeper, including a missed penalty.

Gungahlin coach Marcial Munoz was pleased with his sides' win particularly as they battled the opposite problem to Monaro, having played just once in the last three weeks.

"There wasn't much continuity but to have played how we did after such a long break was fantastic," Munoz said.

"Finishing always lets us down. We play a nice attacking brand of football but we've struggled to put the ball in the back of the net.

"But I was still extremely happy with the performance overall."

At A Glance

Saturday: Gungahlin United 3 (Thomas Muller 2, 37, Josh Gaspari 24) bt Monaro Panthers 1 (Sam Smith 32); Woden-Weston 4 (Martin Deng 2, Segun Adams, Olaide Yinka-Kehinde, ) bt Riverina Rhinos 1 ( Danyon Arnold);  Belconnen United 2( Martin Raines 4, Jason Ugrinic 44) bt Cooma Tigers 1(Villafane 16)       

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