3.00pm Saturday 4th April 2015
EvoStik League Premier Division
Harry Williams Riverside Stadium, Acre Bottom, Ramsbottom, Bury, BL0 0BS
|Ramsbottom ||0 - 2||FC United of Manchester|
| ||Stott 31 (pen)|
1 Grant Shenton (capt)
2 Kyle Harrop
3 Lee Neville
4 Ian Bennett
5 Mark Ayres
6 George Bowyer
7 David Kuba Kuba
8 Jamie Rother
9 Jon Robinson
10 Lee Gaskell
11 Luke Heron
12 Ozebi Abadaki (for 9, 50 mins)
14 Vinnie Mukendi (for 3, 46 mins)
15 Matt Burke (for 8, 69 mins)
|FC United of Manchester|
1 David Carnell
2 Dean Stott (capt)
3 Scott Cheetham
4 Joe Fox
5 Nia Bayunu
6 Chris Lynch
7 Matthew Wolfenden
8 Callum Byrne
9 Tom Greaves
10 Rory Fallon
11 Shelton Payne
12 Luke Ashworth (for 6, 64 mins)
16 Craig Lindfield (for 9, 73 mins)
17 Matthew Walwyn (for 10, 73 mins)
FC United remain seven points clear at the top of the Evo-Stik Premier Division with a game in hand after winning 2-0 at Ramsbottom United.
Captain Dean Stott scored a penalty just after the hour mark and Rory Fallon scored his second goal of the week and his second for the club shortly after the hour.
With the Reds’ rivals all winning, it’s still game on with six games to go but Karl Marginson’s side have never been better placed for promotion to the Conference North.
A busy Easter weekend kicked off with a trip down memory tracks as 400 plus supporters made the journey to the Ramsbottom on the East Lancs railway, just as they had done almost eight years ago to the day on a memorable afternoon ’Down by the Riverside’.
With the next fixture just two days away, Marginson exercised the strength and depth of his squad, ringing in the changes from the winning side at Whitby earlier in the week; and it would be fair to say it took United a good few minutes to settle into their stride in front of a ground record crowd of 2104.
Around ten minutes in, Matthew Wolfenden did well to pursue a ball on the right and laid the ball off to Fallon whose first-time cross met with Greaves for a header just over the cross bar and into the crowded end behind the goal of ex-FC keeper Grant Shenton.
United were being bypassed in the centre and David Kuba Kuba, also formerly of FC United, made a run unchallenged into the United area and came close, just hitting the ball behind.
Bayanu then had a header saved off the line from a second successive corner as the Reds began to step things up and they had to wait just ten minutes more to break the deadlock. Joe Fox played a free kick through to Shelton Payne down the left hand side and as the latter ran into the area, the referee deemed a foul had taken place and awarded a penalty. Stott stepped up and comfortably put United ahead.
FC United could have doubled their lead in spectacular style as the half drew to a close: Callum Byrne struck from range after an excellent build-up and looked up to see his effort clip the cross-bar.
A defensive slice ten minutes after the break almost allowed Tom Greaves the chance to add a fortuitous goal to his tally but the front man struck wide from inside the area. Minutes later, Greaves was in on goal again. Under pressure from George Bowyer he launched an effort which forced Shenton into a fantastic one-handed save. The Rams’ relief was to be short lived however as Fallon headed in at the far post from the resultant corner.
Presumably with Monday’s game in mind, FC United made three substitutions in the space of ten minutes, replacing Chris Lynch, Fallon and Greaves with Luke Ashworth, Matthew Walwyn and Craig Lindfield.
The changes somewhat disrupted the flow of the game, but the Reds ensured that the travelling supporters left the Riverside Stadium satisfied with another three points and it’s full steam ahead for an exciting end-of-season run-in.
Man of the Match: Rory Fallon – worked tirelessly and scored a well-deserved second to make United’s lead comfortable.
Report by Victoria Fullen