Men's Capital Premier Division
Weka Park, Raumati
Wednesday 25th April, 2018

When I started this blog, I made it my aim to get around to every Wellington senior club. In the 2 1/2-3 years I have been doing this I have almost managed it. One of those I hadn't got to was Kapiti Coast United, who play at one of the nicest ground in the Wellington region, Weka Park. It's also a significant ground for me as it was the ground where as a green 7 year old, me and my mates of the Onslow Rama's played our first ever game of football in the Coastland's Raumati Hearts pre-season Junior tournament!

I'm sure I've been back to this ground since then (eg other Coastlands tournaments) but I can't remember when the last time was I had visited. All I really remember about my first visit, was I was put at left back and my mate Nick was at right back, we were told to stand on the opposite corner's of the penalty area at kick off, which we did and then we kept looking at each other to see what we should do next. When play rushed past us in our statue like poses, and we heard the shouts from the sideline it was only then that we realised we were allowed to move! 

Back then it was the Raumati Hearts junior tournament (Coastlands, the mall were the sponsors and the are still there today). Raumati Hearts were founded in 1960 by a Scottish guy with a love for Heart of Midlothian, hence the name Hearts and the Maroon colours they played. They entered the Central League in 1976 and remained there until 1999 mainly in the lower divisions. In 2000 they changed their name to Kapiti Hearts to appeal to the wider region they were in. 

The Weka Park "Grandstand" The JourneyFan

In 1991 Paraparaumu United were formed and entered Central League Division Three. They did well winning two successive promotions and established themselves in Division One. for the rest of the 90s. In 2001 with the league now named the Premier League they had a horror season losing all 18 of their games. As a result of this and dropping numbers they opened talks with Kapiti Hearts and Kapiti Coast United was born.

The last 16 years have seen the club move between Capital Premier and Capital One, they were Champions of Capital One last season, but have been finding the step back into the premier division difficult, losing their first four games and being placed firmly at the bottom of the table. 

Their opponents today, Tawa, had started well with a 2-1 win over their local rivals, Western Suburbs, but since then an inability to capatlise on their chances had seen them have two draws and a loss and drop down to seventh in the table.

It was a brilliant sunny day and it was Tawa that made most of the early running. Kapiti Coast United's tactic's seemed to be a long ball over the top of the defence into the path of player/coach Magno Viera, who would inevitably be called offside! Although this tactic did almost come of in the 24th minute, when KCU's #15 (apologies no teamsheets thanks to My Comet!) beat the offside trap and just had to chip the advancing Tawa keeper, while he managed to chip the keeper, he also managed to send to over the bar, leading the keeper to tell him he had made a right mess of that one!

For all that Tawa looked the better team, they did nothing with the ball when they had it and I am struggling to remember any significant shots on or near goal they had. Then in the 43rd minute KCU got a free kick about 30 yards out and Stuart Lawrie headed it into the underside of the bar and over the line to make it 1-0.
Magno (Not Magnolia) Viera The JourneyFan

When the teams came out for the second half Tawa were missing, well not physically, but as a football team they had packed up and gone home! KCU obviously buoyed by the late first half goal, started attacking the Tawa goal from the kick off and it paid off when the Tawa keeper spilt the ball at the feet of Magno Viera, who slotted it over the line and led to me tweeting out that Magnolia Viera had made it 2-1, thanks Autocorrect! still given the number of likes and retweets it got it was pretty popular!

From then on it was KCU's game, while Tawa did spend a fair bit of time in the KCU half, they were unable to break down a solid defence that kept it's shape well. When KCU attacked they would get a shot in and this led to goals, Dylan Hayes scored a hat-trick as they scored five. Tawa did get a late consolation goal that they didn't really deserve after the performance they put in.

All in all it was a pleasant day watching football at a lovely venue. It's going to be a hard season for both these teams as they look as if they will be battling to avoid relegation.