Maclean continue to rule
IT WAS billed as an epic grand final rematch but fans were left with no doubts over who rules North Coast Football after Maclean’s Bobcats scored a commanding 3-0 triumph against Coffs United Lions on Wednesday night.
Both sides entered the Maclean Showground contest in fine form but it took just five minutes – and a classy Jarrod Doyle finish – to stamp the hosts’ dominance.
On a dewy and somewhat bumpy surface a quality game unfolded between two of the classiest teams in the league.
The one and two touch passing - despite the pitch - was great to watch for Bobcats coach Grant Nielson.
“We knew it was going to be a very hard game with both teams having a bit to prove,” he said.
“Coffs historically have been the hardest team to beat and have been the blue bloods of the competition.
“We have taken their title from them.”
Brodon Hirst doubled the hosts’ lead when he too snuck behind the defence to finish at the near post with equal assuredness.
Jesse Browning hit the underside of bar for the first time with a curling left footer from the edge of the area.
Fraser Robinson tripled the lead on the 30-minute mark, again beating the stagnate Coffs defence and leaving their keeper stranded a third time one on one.
The second-half never reached the heights of the first from either team as long balls crept into the game but both keepers were kept busy all the same.
It was a commanding effort by Nielson’s troops.
“Some of them (the players) had been at work since the early hours,” he said.
“And both teams have lost a few players from last year’s grand final. So I think we might have surprised them.”
In the final 20 minutes a Coffs free kick was too hot to handle before two attackers blazed over the bar from close range in the visitors’ best foray forward.
The triumph moved Maclean to a table-topping three wins from three matches record.