Maghull 2 - 1 South Liverpool
Wednesday 19th August 2015 kick off 6.30pm
At last, points in the bag ! But it took one hell of a change and a smattering of fear.
Ok let's get it out of the way quickly. The manager has put on his Brian Clough head again and is (probably rightly) chuffed and proud of the shake up of the side in the second half and the impression his substitutions left on the game. One of them being a bit of a curve ball, as they say in "rounders" (awaits flak from the yanks who read this) So bravo, big slaps on the back, now you have to do it in the next game.
But it could have been so much different.
A very indifferent first half had South Liverpool ahead and some puzzled and frustrated fans scratching their heads at what was going on. Maghull had the better chances and wasted them, the biggest being Ryan Stampers half volley that rose over the bar from eight yards instead of giving them the lead. But the clinical side of the reigning champions came to the fore, when, after plenty of possession but no real threat of danger, they took advantage of a lack of communication and angles in Maghulls defence and the bulging net saw a head or two drop. To be fair, on the play it was probably deserved. But coming five minutes from the break was a bad blow, when it looked like a sloppy performance had been blemish free.
The second half was a complete turnaround. Tom Foley came on and immediately Souths defence lost the comfort zone they had felt in earlier. Brad Smarts movement perked up and the midfield took control. It was a different game. Tackles were firmer and won, passes were crisp and accurate and the back four played a higher line and kept the South attack at bay for most times. There was a scare midway through the half when (and it was very nice to see) an honest South player did not go down in the box, in his endeavour to keep the ball. If he had toppled, it was a stonewall penalty. So fair play to that chap. But the scores were already level and Lee Carrols record at saving penalties is damn impressive. So it may not have been a worry. Now, that levelller.
With the back line higher they denied South space to play, they played the ball out from the back and over to the right hand side, a nice ball found Sam Wilkie who threaded a cracking ball through the visitors back four. Brad Smart ran through and lashed the ball past the stunned keeper and the reward for their progressive play had paid off. A knife through butter was the line from the South peeps. Maghull didn't slacken, they kept up the pressure, battled hard and gave the opposition no room to play, in doing so creating space to play their own football and create chances. which should have brought about the winner.
South are a very good side and huge concentration was needed to keep them out on their forays into Maghulls half. This they did and no real clear cut chances came, though they did keep us on our toes right to the final whistle. Causing mush distress and concern from the manager as the defibrillator was put on standby as the boss screamed out instructions and making him go very red. Not to mention Maghulls new multiball system that seemed to be at the assistance of South.
By which time the winner had been scored, some ten minutes from time. Scott Baker copied Wilkies earlier pass and set Danny Dylan clear. He squared the ball across the box where Dylan Fitzsimmons put the ball away under a heavy challenge from a retreating defender. The points were won. But they did it the hard way, coming from behind against the champions.
There seems to be a question mooted about of when was the last time Maghull came from behind to win. If anyone knows, please send your answer on a postcard to, I am sadder than you, po box 21 Maghull please do not text or you may be charged.
Well done lads, a huge difference in that second half (I was going to shush Pete, but now I am on a roll) a tremendous performance or two, but you know I don't name names in praise or slaughter those who goof up. Everyone's a winner tonight.
Next game : Mossley Hill away Wednesday 26th August 2015 kick off 6.15pm to be confirmed
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