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Title stalemate for Youth Team

FC United Youth team drew 0-0 at Stalybridge Celtic in what was billed as a title decider. It turned out to be anything but although the home side have the advantage with a game in hand and an extra point whilst the reds have just two league games left.

Stalybridge, who won 2-1 at St Brides started brightly, hoping to press home any psychological advantage that win may have given them. That didn’t last very long as FC United started to gain a foothold in the game. Two consecutive corners in the tenth minute, came to nothing but gave Stalybridge enough to think about defensively to dramatically limit their attacking ideas.

There were few clear cut chances throughout the game as midfield battles dominated and the referee didn’t allow either side to take a quick free kick. The occupants of the FC bench were convinced a penalty should have been given as Jack Lyons appeared to be pulled over in the box. Opinions from alternative viewing positions took the view that any movement to create the contact was accidental.

The remainder of the first half was played out without any real chances and the highlight being the appearance of ex FC youth Perry Johnson as a substitute for Stalybridge.

Possession in the second half was dominated by FC United, this yielded numerous penalty box scrambles although the gamble or a little piece of luck that would have resulted in a tap in was missing. The pace of the game seemed to be controlled by the referee rather than the players which caused considerable frustration on both sides. This came to a head when what appeared to all except the officials to be an FC throw-in was given to Stalybridge. Barry Davies, who had been at the centre of the action was mysteriously sent off for expressing his frustration at the error in the 65th minute. Despite playing the remainder of the game with an extra man, Stalybridge continued to be under the cosh and were almost certainly happier with the result. That said the FC lads were praised by manager Peter Freakes for having given their all in search of victory.

Wins in the remaining two away games at Leigh Sports Village and Ashton Athletic the following week should see the lads finish no lower than second and qualifying for a play-off semi final from the other group of the NWYA Premiership, probably either Nantwich or Marine on May 3rd and hopefully a rematch in the final to be played at Ashton Athletic on the 10th.

Stalybridge Celtic

1. Liam Warner
2. Michael Mulholland
3. Graham Smith
4. Joel Bembo-Leta
5. Matthew Moores
6. Michael Jones
7. Michael Brickhill
8. Brad Byrne
9. James Cooper
10. Ben Aspinall
11. Lee Constantine


12. Daniel Penny
14. Perry Johnson
15. Nathan Barber
16. Fabien Bembo-Leta
17. Daniel Bryce

FC United of Manchester

1. Grant Shenton
2. Ashley Reece
3. Barry Davies (Sent Off 65 Minutes)
4. John Buckley
5. Nick Swirad
6. Anddy Lee
7. Mark Reeves
8. Jack Lyons (Cautioned 75 Minutes)
9. Tony Iloba
10. Jamie Mack
11. Shaun Williams


12. Jake Haslam
14. Tim Marshall
15. Lawrence Zisaruk-Gibson
16. Josh Burke (for 4, 77 minutes)
17. Gage Eme (for 9, 73 minutes)

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First Posted ~ 13:46 Tue 21 Apr 2009
News ID ~ 2208
Last Updated ~ 17:14 Fri 11 Oct 2013