Coeur have looked to steady the ship in the last two weeks but knew that this week would be different as title contenders Naylorsfield were the opposition. A couple of season's back, Coeur had faced Naylorsfield in the semi final of the Senior Shield and were unfortunate to lose out to the only goal of the game, this season though there were polar differences between the fortunes of the two sides as Coeur languish near the foot of the table, having failed to produce any real consistency or form over the season so far.
Coeur were again limited in their choices, with 16 players unavailable for selection. Coeur drafted in keeper Dave Moran from the firsts, along with Mick Carragher. Loz Halpin was called in from the Vets and Robbie Malone was also on the bench as he looked to salvage something from an injury ravaged season.
The first 20 minutes were fairly even, with both sides having decent possesion without really threatening either goal. Rob Phil had Coeur's best chance on 20 minutes as he planted a header just over the bar from 6 yards out. Coeur's attacking efforts were short lived as Naylorsfield killed the game as a contest in a two minute spell, where rank band defending allowed two simple tap-ins from close range. The first saw the left winger escape the attentions of Rob Phil down the flank. He slid the ball into the box where the centre forward stood in the middle of what must have been a 5 yard exclusion zone. A quick flick of his foot saw the ball diverted past a helpless Dave Moran in goal. Within 90 seconds of the restart Coeur were 2 down. A miss hit cross saw Dave claw the ball onto the bar, only for it to drop to another totally unmarked forward who couldnt believe his luck as he was afforded the time to take a couple of touches before knocking the ball home from 5 feet out. Coeur were visibally deflated having conceded two poor goals in such a short space of time. Naylorsfield grew in confidence and began dominating the game, passing well and making Coeur's midfield look non-existent. A third was added 5 minutes from the interval as a weak defensive header from a corner saw a midfielder have time to kill the ball before drilling it home from 8 yards, despite the best efforts of Rob Phil on the line.
Half Time 0 - 3
The second half was better for Coeur as Dave was only called upon 2 or 3 times as opposed to several decent saves he made in the first half. Their was a general feeling on the line, that despite Coeur's more resilient defending, Naylorsfield could have stepped it up a gear or 2 had they needed to. Chris and John up front were isolated from the rest of the side and were also well marshalled by a solid defence. John had the best chance of the second half as he skipped past a couple of challenges, only to see his shot parried wide by the keeper. Naylorsfield made it four with the last kick of the game with a smart trun and finish, after Rannard had been felled by an elbow, leaving him prone on the deck as the final whistle went.
Another poor performance, somewhat due to the pressure applied by the opposition and also due to Coeur's inability to do the basic correctly.
Full Time 0 - 4