Two games in four days or less a big test for Southern League squads

Universities defender Max McGuinness makes a clearance under pressure from Christchurch United's...
Universities defender Max McGuinness makes a clearance under pressure from Christchurch United's Niko Bruce during United's 1-0 win at English Park. PHOTO: JIM WATTS PHOTOGRAPHY
The first round of the English Cup may prove to be a thorn in the side for Southern League teams play two games in four days or less.

Newly-promoted Universities have the toughest task. They lost 1-0 to defending champions Christchurch United in the cup on Thursday at English Park - and will hop on a flight early tomorrow morning for their league game away to Dunedin City Royals.

They have just 44 hours to recover and prepare from the final whistle against United to kick-off in Dunedin.

Head coach Aldo Miramontes said he is managing the players' workloads.

Miramontes rested some players for the United game "because we really are focusing on Saturday".

He believes his side can get a good result in Dunedin. Uni have lost their opening four games of the season all by one goal.

“Last Saturday we did a very good game against Nelson (a 1-0 loss). We just were not lucky, and I think we deserved more.

“The performance has been way better than we expected. There’s more positives than negatives.

“We feel like we are very close to the first win of the season.”

Meanwhile, Nomads may feel a sense of déjà vu after beating Selwyn in the cup yesterday 3-1 and facing them again in the league on Saturday.

Captain Jacob Anderson said it is a tough schedule.

“It’s going to be a bit tricky because once we’ve played each other the first time, both teams will adjust to each other’s style of play.

“So I think the second time around will be even more difficult.”

English Cup round 1 results

  • Selwyn Utd 1-3 Nomads, Foster Park
  • Burwood 0-1 Ferrymead Bays, Clare Park
  • Cashmere Tech 10-0 St Albans Shirley, Garrick Park
  • FC Twenty 11 0-1 Oxford FC, Avonhead Park
  • Universities 0-1 Christchurch Utd, English Park
  • Coastal Spirit 3-0 Waimak Utd, Linfield Park
  • Halswell Utd 3-3 (3-4 pens) Western, Halswell Domain
  • Parklands BYE

Southern League round 5 fixtures

  • Dunedin CR v Universities, Tahuna Park, Sat 12.30pm
  • FC Twenty 11 v Christchurch Utd, Avonhead Park, Sat 2.45pm
  • Selwyn Utd v Nomads, Foster Park, Sat 3pm
  • Coastal Spirit v Ferrymead Bays, Linfield Park, Sun 12pm
  • Nelson Suburbs v Cashmere Tech, Saxton Fields, Sun 12.30pm

Points: Chch Utd 12; Cash Tech 10; Nelson 10; Coastal 8; Bays 7; Nomads 6; Selwyn 3; Dunedin 1; Uni 0; FC Twenty 0