Ten men run the game, consistency and we finally score from the spot.

Upton AA 3-4 Maghull

Saturday September 7th 2013 kick off 3pm

Seven goals, a sending off, some shocking defending and puzzlement with the officials. Now how do I cram all this into two paragraphs !

Dillon, Williams 2 and Hastings scored for Maghull, some players scored three goals for Upton amidst some awful defending,Mullen sent off for Maghull and the referee could have had a better game. Three points and back level with the leaders.

There, I did it in one...now for reality.

Maghull needed a pick me up after the shambles of last Saturday and it was nice to see them get some credibility back.

Upton had the better of the early stages, with lots of long balls played over the top and forcing a few corners. But no threat was made on Maghulls goal, despite young Mike Dixon having a David James moment or two.

The momentum eventually sung Maghulls way as the got the ball down and played it around well. Marko Parvas found room inside the Upton area and struck a shot that was going wide, but was anticipated by Danny Van Dillon who struck home to put Maghull one goal to the good.

A calamity then took place that looked more at home in a monty python sketch. Within moments of the kick off, Upton had launched the ball into Maghulls box. Three players had the chance, not only to clear, but clear well. Each seemed to be of the impression that the ball was a hot potato which resulted in a clear chance for Upton to level the scores. They duly obliged and stupidly the game was one all.

What happened next, was just pure sillyness. Having been wrongly booked, for a nothing challenge very early on. Lee Mullen challenged for an aerial ball. Ball struck arm or vice versa, only Lee knows. But surely the referee would have used some common sense. Lee was being targeted by the home side, trying to get offences given against him ever since the stupid yellow. The letter of the law says deliberate handball is a bookable offence. The referee sent him off for a second yellow. We will refer back to this later.

Inspiration came in the face of adversity. Maghull did not just re-group, they upped the pace of the game and took to destroying the hosts with brilliant, flowing football.

Steve Williams hit a great curling left footer, that struck the bar but soon after he got his goal, moving onto a cute pass from Ryan Stamper and sliding the ball under the keeper. John Hasting then played in a glorious cross that was met, with a bullet header, by Dillon and 3-1. The linesman cruelly cut short celebrations by raising his flag. No idea who was offside, but it wasn't Dillon.

The third was not long in coming. Steve Williams being tormentor in chief, by turning his marker close to the byline and cruelly being scythed down. The penalty was given, no card was shown. Williams made them pay by despatching the penalty high and hard into the net.

A great scorleine at half time, considering being a man down.

The second half continued where the first had left off. Maghull on the ascendency, Upton not knowing how to cope. Maghulls defence became redundant, only needed to step up for offside decisions as the bulk of the play was in Uptons half. On one of the rare occasions that Upton did escape the clutches of Maghulls onslaught, they really should have paid the penalty. The ball was played through the flat back four and Steve Williams was on the run. As he went to, move away, from the returning defender, he was clipped. He tried to keep going but was stumbling and the ball ran to the keeper. The referee rightly gave the free kick. The last defender had fouled the attacker with a goal scoring opportunity and that is a straight red card offence. The linesman agreed he had to go. Not even a yellow was shown.

The fourth came soon after, when from another free kick close to the edge of the box, John Hastings did a Trevor Brooking and jammed the ball in the stanchion of the goal and the points were wrapped up. Maghull rightly took their foot off the pedal and eased down for the final whistle. Even with over 20 minutes still to go.

But the last ten still managed to bring a touch of madness to the scoreline. A driven low cross struck Joe McMahon. No arguments that it hit his arm, but his arms were by his side and not in this newly found unnatural position. A penalty was given and to rub salt into the wounds, Joe was booked for handball. Crazy !

The skipper of Upton was then lost another of his cats lives, having freely admitted earlier he was lucky to stay on the pitch for bringing Williams down, he now denied Marko Parvas a clear run in on goal with one of those sneaky lean to the side and let the ball hit your arm secenarios. A free kick given, no card shown again. Phil Stafford was rightly livid at the lack of consistency on show. It was very poor.
And then just to annoy Phil even more, the defence went back to sleep and made a complete hash of a loose all in our box, as Upton sensed a mad comeback. How the ball was left inside the six yard box with no maghull player or keeper in a position to stop Upton scoring was weird to say the least.

Yet again we were left clinging on for a win that was so comfortable earlier. Maybe the taking it easy part, is not the right approach and just be ruthless and put these sides to a six or seven drubbing is the right way. Suffice to say, the game finished very late and Maghull got the win.

More of the first seventy minutes please lads. It was great to watch.

Next game : Vauxhall Motors Reserves away Tuesday 10th September 2013 kick off 7.30pm

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