Good Run in Store for Albany

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After a run of disappointing results, Albany United turned the tables last weekend as they toppled Papakura City by a 5-1 score line. 

With head coach, Tel Sheehy out of the country, stand-in coach, Rashaad Vahed is hoping the win last week is the start of a good run, with the team in red seeking to chase North Shore rivals, Takapuna in the Lotto NRFL Men’s Division Two.

“We’ve been working on a large portion of our mental side of the game after a couple of losses, and it just so happened to click against Papakura” Vahed said.

“We’re hoping to go on a good run, we’ve had a really up and down season with people away, sick, injured and not being 100% all the time, so we’re hoping that win changes things and a good run comes together out of it, and see where it takes us.”

“We’ve got a goal for the season and I’m sure everyone else does, and right now that’s to catch Takapuna, they’re a little bit out of sight, but we’ve got to get a good run and see how close we can get, as well as meet our goals for the season.”

Albany United’s Lee Robinson in action. Photo: David Joseph /

To catch league leaders Takapuna, Albany will need to overcome their next challenge in the league, and that’s against mid-table side, Onehunga Mangere United.

Four weeks ago, the pair met in a mid-week fixture for the first time this season, with Albany taking out the match with a resounding 4-1 victory.

However, despite winning last time around, Vahed sees the match as a completely new challenge and is doing everything he can to ensure Albany are prepared to walk away with the three points over the weekend.

“They’re a well-balanced side, with real pace down the wings and they’re pretty solid in defence as well, so we know it’ll be a far closer and interesting game this weekend than it was a few weeks ago and we’ll be ready for it.”

“Sangster Crawford played on the left the last time and he was a real threat down the flanks, with his pace and skill, he was looking to get behind us every time he got on the ball.”

“Myron Manickum plays more in the centre attacking role, he has real skill on the ball and if we allow him the space, he can really hurt us with his pace and his skill, but their whole team can be a threat when they’re going forward, so we need to be aware of that.”

This season, Albany have had a couple of veterans who’ve been firing on all cylinders for the side, with Lee Robinson and Andrew Mobberley consistently finding themselves on the score sheet week-in and week-out.

Albany United’s Andrew Mobberley on the move. Photo: David Joseph /

“Besides the talent and experience they bring to the team, they also bring a level of calmness that we can exploit through the spine of the team, it helps out our young players who are coming through and gives us the leadership in the dressing room, along with our captain and a few other senior players which we have all over the park.”

“When they’re all on fire, it makes us a very dangerous side, which is why I am hoping we can kick on from last week’s win and have a good run.”

The match is scheduled to kick off at 3pm at Rosedale Park.

Full Audio Interview:

Other Lotto NRFL Men’s Division Two Fixtures: 
Northland FC v Metro FC – Tikipunga Park
Te Atatu v Takapuna AFC – Te Atatu Peninsula Park
Cambridge FC v Ngongotaha AFC – John Kerkhof Park
Bucklands Beach AFC v Papakura City – Lloyd Elsmore Park

All matches are scheduled to kick off at 3pm.

The match between Claudelands Rovers v Franklin United has been postponed due to Franklin United replaying their ISPS Handa Chatham Cup Fixture.

Lotto NRFL Men’s Division Two League Table: