Knights kickstart season with 'professional' QPL victory
FOOTBALL: The Ipswich Knights are keen to build some early momentum in this year's Queensland Premier League competition after an encouraging 1-0 victory in their season opener.
Playing away on Saturday night, the Knights toiled hard to keep Southside Eagles scoreless in what head coach Andy Ogden described as "a really good professional performance''.
"We thoroughly deserved the victory,'' Ogden said.
"We didn't probably play as fluently as we have in some of the trial games but we were really solid.
"The pitch was actually reasonably heavy so the ball didn't move as quick as we would like but the main focus of what we said all week and before the game was 'if we keep a clean sheet, we think we are good enough to win the game'.
"And that's how it panned out.''
Ogden praised his new-look back four for denying the home side any major shots, giving goalkeeper Chris Parsons a quiet night.
Club captain Jack Cabassi was joined by Robbie Baker, Corey Lucas and Ben Taylor in the vital defensive line.
Teenager Baker was the only player from that group in last year's Knights back four.
"We defended really, really well,'' Ogden said, encouraged by having more defensive options this season.
"That was a major area (we have worked on).''
During a productive pre-season, the Knights produced some promising results against National Premier Leagues and Queensland Premier Leagues sides.
Among those to show early form was striking newcomer Lachlan Munn, who continued his goal-scoring run on Saturday night.
Munn netted the winner in the 81st minute after a strong run from Toowoomba recruit Nick Edwards.
The Knights midfield also worked well, built around former NPL player Lincoln Rule, Eyale Teshager and the busy Emmanuel Peter.
"The boys were happy, a good positive start,'' the coach said.
"It sets up a good week at training.''
One of the team's influential pre-season performers Nahom Waldo also returns after missing Saturday night's game.
The Knights under 20's drew 2-2 with Southside Eagles in the earlier game they had enough chances to win.
The club's under 18s started the season with a flurry, beating the Eagles 7-2 on Friday night.
The Knights' next matches are away against Holland Park this weekend as Football Queensland finalises 2019 draws.
FQPL Rd 1: Ipswich Knights 1 (Lachlan Munn) def Southside Eagles 0 at Memorial Park.
U20: Ipswich Knights drew Southside Eagles 2-2. U18: Ipswich Knights def Southside Eagles 7-2.