3.00pm Saturday 14th March 2015
EvoStik League Premier Division
The Grove, Old Hawne Lane, Halesowen, West Midlands, B63 3TB
|Halesowen Town ||0 - 1||FC United of Manchester|
| ||Lindfield 76|
1 Matthew Sargeant
2 Kristian Green
3 Aaron Griffiths
4 Aaron Forde
5 Joe Hull (capt)
6 Curtis Tilt
7 Asa Charlton
8 Tom Tonks
9 Iyseden Christie
10 Ben Haseley
11 Danny Bragoli
12 Elliot Turner (for 3, 89 mins)
14 Aaron Daniels (for 11, 83 mins)
|FC United of Manchester|
1 David Carnell
2 Liam Brownhill
3 Greg Daniels
4 Dave Birch (capt)
5 Lewis Lacy
6 Chris Lynch
7 Matthew Wolfenden
8 Thomas Brown
9 Tom Greaves
10 Jerome Wright
11 Craig Lindfield
12 Nia Bayunu (for 9, 85 mins)
15 Joe Fox (for 4, 17 mins)
17 Rory Fallon (for 7, 73 mins)
FC United moved five points clear at the top of the Evo-Stik Premier Division with a game in hand after winning 1-0 at Halesowen on Saturday afternoon.
Craig Lindfield headed home the winner 14 minutes from the end to edge the Reds another point clear at the top of the league.
Once ahead, FC United managed to hold on in tricky conditions to claim a huge three points going into the final 10 games of the season. The victory stretched the Reds’ unbeaten league run to 20 games, on our club’s inaugural visit to the Grove.
Halesowen corners and long throws became a steady theme in the early stages of the match. The hosts’ first shot coming as a result of the latter as Thomas Tonks launched the ball in and Aaron Griffiths struck low through a crowded area into the arms of Dave Carnell , who did well to get down to match the effort.
The Yeltz were largely controlling the game and it quickly became apparent that a poor playing surface would not benefit football being played on the deck. The Reds were dealt a blow early on, losing their captain to injury, Dave Birch but Joe Fox proved a more than sufficient replacement in the centre of the park.
Matthew Wolfenden came close with a header just wide as United were beginning to pressure the home side, discovering their own threat in Fox’s long throw. However, the next major chance fell to Kristian Green who forced a corner at the post from Carnell.
A short stoppage ensued at the latter end of the half due to FC’s keeper staying down injured after an apparent knock from a Halesowen forward. Fortunately, United’s shot-stopper was fit to continue and the Reds ended the half on the attack with Tom Greaves putting the ball over from a decent chance and almost latching onto a great through ball from Greg Daniels.
The Reds had to wait until the hour mark for their next real chance; this time via Wolfenden whose powerful volley sailed over the bar. Shortly after, the United attacker was replaced by Rory Fallon and four minutes later The Grove erupted as FC United went ahead.
A ball into the box was met by Lindfield who powered a shot goalwards which deflected out to the left edge of the area where Fox lofted in a cross and Lindfield rose highest to skilfully glance his header into the bottom corner.
Once ahead, Marginson opted to strengthen the backline, debuting Nia Bayunu in place of Greaves with the aim of holding onto the lead for a tense final few minutes. As the game entered into added time, Carnell pulled out a crucial stop to deny the equaliser and the magnitude of the points gained as the final whistle sounded was tangible around the ground.
Next up is a home match against title rivals Workington at our temporary Tameside Stadium home this coming Tuesday. Get yourself to that football ground and help the team take another giant stride in this enthralling campaign.
Report by Victoria Fullen.
Website man of the match: Joe Fox – ably stepped up to replace Dave Birch and proved key in both attack and defence in a tough game.