|Venue||Water-lode, Kingsleyfields, Nantwich, CW5 5BS, Weaver Stadium|
|Competition||EvoStik League Premier Division|
|1 (1)||-||1 (0)|
|Cooke 10|| ||Norton 83|
|1 J Brain |
2 D Moss
3 Z Foster
4 D MacPherson
5 M Bailey
6 A Solovjovs
7 S Cooke
8 C Flynn (capt)
9 S Everall
10 M Lennon
11 N Maguire
14 B Mills (for 9, 76 mins)
18 C Mitchell (for 11, 82 mins)
|1 James Spencer |
2 Kyle Jacobs (capt)
3 Lee Neville
4 Michael Carr
5 Adam Jones
6 Greg Stones
7 Carlos Roca
8 James Holden
9 Ben Deegan
10 Dean Stott
11 Stephen Johnson
12 Mike Norton (for 9, 70 mins)
14 Matthew Wolfenden (for 8, 66 mins)
15 Daniel Grimshaw (for 4, 66 mins)
|A Michael Norton header with eight minutes to go saw FC United rescue a point with a 1-1 draw at Nantwich on Tuesday night as the Reds extended their unbeaten run to nine games.|
The Reds came close inside the first minute when ex-Nantwich midfielder Michael Carr narrowly headed wide but it was The Dabbers who took the lead on nine minutes when a slip in the FC defence let in the dangerous Sean Cooke who rounded James Spencer, only for the keeper to bring him down.
Despite the screams from the home fans, the card was yellow, mainly due to Cooke’d touch that pushed him quite wide and that there were defenders covering. Cooke got up and fired the penalty into the bottom corner.
United then struggled to get back into the game and the hosts seemed content to defend their slender lead. It took till the 36th minute for the next incident of note when Si Everall gained the benefit of a bouncing ball and played himself clean through, he rounded Spencer but chipped the ball wide with the goal at his mercy.
Into the second half and just past the hour mark, Carr was unlucky again as the ball was played to him on the left hand side of the box, his shot going wide.
Ten minutes later there was panic in the home box as a free-kick was only palmed out by goalkeeper Jon Brain with the defence scrambling the ball away.
The Reds did equalise on 82 minutes when a run and cross by debutant Stephen Johnson, who joined this week from Marine, found the head of substitute Norton who buried his third headed goal of the week past Brain.
The goal seemed to lift FC United and they now began to attack with more purpose, Daniel Grimshaw seeing a goalward shot blocked. However, all the hard work was nearly undone when Nantwich almost regained the lead in the 89th minute. Captain Kyle Jacobs lost the ball in the middle of the pitch to Cooke who saw his shot well saved by Spencer.
Deep into injury time and back down the other end, FC almost snatched victory when a Matthew Wolfenden shot was well blocked by Brain but overall a draw was a fair result. Neither side made their mark on the game and clear goal scoring chances were at a premium.
Website man of the match: Stephen Johnson. A busy debut full of energy, showed some good touches, an eagerness for the ball and played in a lovely cross for the goal.
Report by Steven Wood