City refocus after sore Cup exit

Words: ACFC Media

Sunday 1 August 2021

Picture: Phototek

AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Auckland City FC must refocus on Northern League title after Saturday's sore Chatham Cup exit in Wellington.

A goal in each half by Joao Moreira and Andy Bevin gave Miramar Rangers a comfortable victory against ten-man Auckland City FC that sent Scott Hales side into the semi-final draw.

José Figueira reflected on a tough day at the office following the 2-0 defeat.

"It is obviously a really disappointing day. We came into the game confident.

"Aside from the goal Miramar scored from their only clear cut chance of the first half, we were solid enough and I felt we began to control the game.

"But in the second half we just couldn’t get going and didn’t deal with Miramar's physicality, aggression and on-the-front-foot football. We lost our way," he said.

Matters were made worse for the Navy Blues when All Whites striker Myer Bevan was shown a straight red card.

Figueira said Bevan held his hand up for the transgression a moment which transformed the prospect of a comeback into a Herculean task.

"The red card was a blow and their second goal came soon after we had a big chance to make it 1-1.

"Myer held up his hand for what happened which is to his credit but its a sore one right now.

"The sending off made life very difficult for us and it was an uphill task from that point," he said.

Focus now turns to the remainder of the Northern League campaign and the seven points required to take out the title.

"My message to our players is that we have to swallow the manner of that defeat.

"Nobody likes to lose big games like that and we have to pick ourselves up and refocus.

"Next week's game with North Shore United is vital in that respect and we need to set our sights on our next objective which is to secure top spot in the Northern League."

Ends

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