Maghull 6-1 Hale
Wednesday 20th August 2014 kick off 6.30pm
After Saturdays loss, it was nice to see the lads get back to winning ways.
The game took some time to come to life and if truth be told, maybe the first ten minutes gave cause for concern again. One or two good defensive challenges and sweeping up by the keeper, kept the fiesty visitors out.
Maghull came to life and began creating chances. Two good efforts from Michael Boyle came back off the keeper and the post and a touch of desperation set in amongst Hales defence. Having suffered an early season thumping already, they may have feared the worst again.
The games strangest decision came when Colin McDonald got past his man to a ball over the top. The ball was lofted over the on rushing keeper and we had the opener. Unfortunately not. The referee got his timings all wrong. McDonald, though being pulled back, escaped his markers affections with ease, but the ref blew his whistle. We had Peter Beardsley circa 1988 all over again. A free kick was given and despite the visitors protests, the last man was to get his shower a lot earlier than everyone else. If he had waited just a second or two more, Maghull would be a goal up and Hale would still have had 11 men. In his defence, he seemed to acknowledge he had been a touch lively with his whistle. But it was a wrong decision. The free kick came to nothing.
Soon after Maghull did claim the lead. Once again from the penalty spot and once again Mike Cummins slotted home. Has the fear of the penalty spot left us ?
But I cant stay close to Ray, at games, anymore. He has that ability of... what are they called ?!?!. that's it, a wife ! An amazing knack of talking at the wrong time, I respond and miss something. I cannot report on who was brought down for the penalty, for this self same reason. But Ray misses nothing.
Anyway, a few more chances went begging, but close to the break Hale sprung a surprise by snatching an equaliser. Tom Wharton beat the Hale number 10 (who was causing problems all night) to the ball and went to bring it away. He had his pocket pinched and the number 10 slammed it into the top corner and it was all square again, at half time.
Bold or damn silly, who knows, but Hale came out with a flat back three and requesting the wing backs to cover at all costs. In hindsight, it didnt work, so, silly may be the conclusion.
All we do know, of the 3 at the back plan that soon became 4 then 5, is that Maghull went on the rampage.
Sitting deep and clogging up the centre of the pitch, eg Mourinhos defensive tactics, always seems the best plan to me, when holding onto a scoreline against the odds. Playing a high flat line was just what Maghull thrived on. Time and again Maghull broke through Hales defence and with a bit of luck and better finishing, it could have been double figures by the end. Instead, we settled for Mike Cummins restoring the lead, a Jordan Stafford show, with a quick fire hat trick and a classy run and finish, in the gloom, by Michael Boyle, to round things off.
Yes, the midfielders did break from deep. But did the high line help ? And the one man advantage ? Opinion is divided
Yes Tom Wharton had his pocket pinched,by a good player or should he have cleared beforehand ? Opinion is divided.
Would the scoreline have been as emphatic with eleven against eleven ? Opinion is divided.
That is part of what makes football so interesting...opinions !!
Good luck on Saturday lads, I will be a culture vulture down in the smoke...3 more points needed. A repeat of last season would be very nice.
Next Game : Cammell Lairds 1907 Reserves away league Saturday 23rd August 2014 kick off 3pm
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