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FG Predicts: Rock Cup 1st Round Sunday 10th January

With the 2016 Gibraltar Rock Cup getting underway today with two games, we’ve racked our brains together to try and predict the outcome of the two games on today.  

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Nine-man Phoenix earn gutsy 2-2 draw with Europa Point

Nine-man Phoenix kept their promotion dreams alive with a gutsy 2-2 draw with fellow promotion-hopefuls Europa Point.

The first half started with Phoenix on the attack and had two great chance early on but Adrian Dominguez & Fernando Cuesta’s shot went wide. Despite all the early pressure from Phoenix it was Europa Point who broke the deadlock, a quick one-two by Marek Albert & Mansoor Nooristani saw the Phoenix defence split wide open and Mansoor Nooristani run through on goal and slot past the keeper. 

Three minutes later Europa Point doubled their lead, Mansoor Nooristani played the Marek Albert, the striker skipped past a defender and drilled his shot into the bottom corner. Europa Point nearly made it 3-0 five minutes later but Jose Arana’s free-kick went inches past the post. Midway through the half Phoenix pulled a goal back, Adrian Dominguez controlled the ball in the middle and slotted his shot into the bottom corner.

Five minutes later Phoenix nearly equalised, Fernando Cuesta latched onto a Ivan Pecino through ball but the striker’s effort hit the post. Minutes later Phoenix went down to 10 men as Richard Valarino was given a red card for dissent, a decision which we have been told will have a very serious recupercution. Just before half-time Europa Point were awarded a penalty as Marek Albert was fouled in the area by Gerardo Lopez, a decision which saw Gerardo sent off. Marek Albert stepped up and keeper Juan Tinajero guessed the right way and kept it out.

The second half started with Phoenix on the attack, Fernando Cuesta continued to cause the Europa Point defenders havoc as his shot was saved by Jose Garcia. Marek Albert have numerous chances to put the game to bed for Europa Point but the striker couldn’t direct his efforts on goal. 

With twenty minutes remaining Gib Phoenix equalised, Jose Lopez Blazquez controlled the ball in the middle and smashed his shot past Garcia. Unbelievable scenes followed as everyone in the stadium couldn’t believe what they had just witnessed.

With ten minutes remaining Europa Point through everything they had at the Phoenix defence to try and find a winner but Daniel Rodgers & Jonathan Tadafe’s efforts went wide. Phoenix were able to hold on and walk away with a well deserved point.

This draw sees Europa Point move one point clear at the top while Phoenix remain sixth.

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Cuesta: “We have a very strong group of players who can win the league”

Today’s early kick-off sees us turn our attention to the Second Division as Europa Point take on Gibraltar Phoenix, with both teams battling it out for promotion. We caught up with Phoenix talisman Fernando Cuesta as he gave us his views on today’s massive game.

Firstly Cuesta reflected on his side’s 4-1 win over Red Imps last week, “We played fairly well, we controlled the game throughout but there’s always room for improvement.”

Phoenix go into today’s game sitting in sixth, we asked if he feels the team has enough to win the league this season, “We have a very strong group of players who can win the league no doubt, we just need to make sure that we get the right results against the top team.”

Lastly, Cuesta gave us an insight into how he and the team feels going into today’s game, “The team & I feel extremely motivated, it’s one of our biggest games of the season and we can’t afford a loss.”

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Cuesta strikes again as Phoenix ease to 4-0 win over Red Imps

Gib Phoenix moved up to fourth after easing to a 4-0 win over Red Imps courtesy of goals from Fernando Cuesta, Luis Cortes Silva, Jose Luis Lopez Blazquez & Jamie Linares.

The first half started with both teams enjoying good amounts of possession but neither able to create any chances. Twenty minutes in Red Imps had shouts for a penalty turned down after the ball had come off one of the Phoenix players, referee said no.

MInutes later Phoenix took the lead, a free-kick was whipped in and met at the back post, the midfielder was able guide his effort back into the area where Jamie Linares was waiting to slot his shot away. Phoenix started to dominate after taking the lead, Cortes Silva’s shot was well saved by Moxham. Shortly after Phoenix nearly made it 2-0 but an excellent goal line clearance from Thomas Hastings saved Red Imps.

Red Imps had a chance near the end of the first half but El Yettefti’s shot went wide. The game restarted and the referee blew for halftime with Phoenix leading 1-0. The second half started with Red Imps on the attack, Jayce Consigliero’s long range shot was saved by Tinajero and the rebound was cleared. 

The game evened out with both teams playing well but Phoenix looking likely to score and nearly did but Moxham was able to save Tomillero’s shot. Shortly after Phoenix made it 2-0, Cortes Silva with a tidy finish. Phoenix nearly made it 3-0, Tomillero capitalised on a poor clearance from Moxham but Moxham was able to get back on his line and make a save. 

The Red Imps players heads went down after 2-0 making them easy pickings for Phoenix, Fernando Cuesta had a glorious chance to make it 3-0, the striker did well to skip past a defender and tried to lob Moxham but his effort went over the bar.

Phoenix finally got their third, Lopez Blazquez latched onto a through ball and slotted his shot past the keeper. Minutes later Phoenix made it 4-0, Cuesta skipped past a Red Imps defender and curled his shot into the bottom corner. Phoenix played the last five minutes with ten men and Sabastro came off injured. Phoenix were able to hold on and ran out comfortable winners.

This win sees Phoenix move fourth in the league while Red Imps remain ninth.