3 - 0
FC United of Manchester
FC United lost 3-0 to newly promoted Conference North side Leamington FC on Saturday afternoon.
The score-line wasn’t really a fair reflection of the day’s play but unfortunately for the Reds, the result was.
Despite the defeat, the occasion was a nice, relaxed day in the sun for 505 supporters and the match will have proved beneficial for manager Karl Marginson who used the opportunity to try out some new players. In particular, Margy will probably have been pleased to by the impressive performances of right-back Cavill Coo and centre-back Tom Davies.
For the first 44 minutes, the Reds held their own against the Southern League champions but on the stroke of half-time The Brakes’ player of the season Liam Daly fired a free-kick under the wall and into the bottom left corner. It was a soft goal to concede at a renownedly bad time.
Margy made wholesale changes at the break and it was substitute Michael Norton who had United’s best chance of the match on 53 minutes. Reds youngster Greg Daniels managed to force his way past a couple of defenders into the penalty area and the ball fell invitingly for the usually deadly Norton who somehow managed to curl his shot wide of the right post.
It was a let off for the hosts and three minutes later they received another one. Rhodri Giggs whipped a superb cross in from the right and Davies was unfortunate to see his back post header saved at point blank range by goalkeeper Tony Breeden.
To compound the misfortune, Leamington went straight down the other end and doubled their lead with their first chance of the second half when Ricky Johnson headed home a Stephan Morley cross. FC United were being given a lesson in how to be clinical in front of goal by their Warwickshire hosts.
The result was put beyond any doubt with eight minutes to go. A free-kick from the right by Sam Adkins was parried back into the danger area by Reds goalkeeper James Spencer and Jamie Towers smashed the ball into the roof of the net for 3-0.
All-in-all, it was a good workout for FC United’s players but they will be disappointed to have conceded two goals from set-pieces and not to have got on the score sheet at least once themselves.
Hopefully, United will have the opportunity to return to the New Windmill Ground to make amends in a Conference North match in the not too distant future.
Report by Matthew Haley