Saturday September 10, 12.30pm
CHORLEY our played, out thought and our fought FC United in the dinner time kick-off at Victory Park to regain top spot in the league from Bradford Park Avenue, for a couple of hours anyway!
Following the much publicises issues leading up to this fixture, the decision of not taking their allocation of tickets by the FC United board of directors may have backfired on themselves as the Rebels never really looked on top form , the lack of their usual vocal and partisan following certainly appeared to affect their team.
With just six minutes on the clock FC keeper James Spencer received his first test of the afternoon when Andy Teague found Tom Ince with a superb 30 yard pass, and the diminutive winger fired in a shot which the keeper had to tip over his bar.
Whaley then had the next opportunity, attempting a ‘Foster’ from the edge of the area, but the aim of this lob was slightly out as the ball bounce the wrong side of the upright
Russ Saunders, who has been superb since his arrival from Hyde, showed his class to keep everything FC could throw at him out.
The Magpies almost took the lead on 38 minutes when Teague and Adam Roscoe both rose at the far post, ane whoever won the headed was unlucky to see if cleared off the line in a goal mouth scramble. A minutes later though the Magpies weren’t to be denied.
A good passing moved ended with Roscoe being upended in the box, and McEvilly made no mistake from the spot to send Spencer the wrong way.
Approaching the interval FC stepped up a gear and hit the woodwork and had a shot cleared off the line, but failed to level the scored before the break.
Throughout the game FC United gave away too many unnecessary free-kicks; pulling, pushing and clipping the Chorley players whenever challenging for the ball, and just two minutes into the second half they were made to pay for these indecisions. A free-kick was floated in from just over the halfway time to McEvilly, whose deft header found Andy Russell, whose equally deft header landed perfectly for Teague to slam the ball beyond Spencer to double the lead.
FC United then tested Saunders with a shot from distance, but the keeper had plenty of time to set himself and deal with the effort.
McEvilly, who on another day could have had a hat-trick, wasted an opportunity when put through on the keeper as he couldn’t get the ball from under his feet to test Spencer.
Saunders made a routine save from an overhead attempt as the visitors tried to find a way into the game, but the other then this the visitors began to look more ragged as the game progressed, unable to step up a gear with their supporters forced to watch on TV.
On 77 minutes Steve Flitcroft was unlucky to receive a straight red card. With all the rule changes over recent season the art of tackling is appears to be gradually being remove from the game. The tackle Steve put in would have been applauded in his older brothers days at City or Rovers, but these days the governing bodies have declared war on tacklers and if you challenge with your foot raised.
McEvilly missed a second one-on-one opportunity as the Magpies made light work of being numerically disadvantaged.
With ten minutes remaining FC United’s Jake Cotterell was lucky to stay on the pitch following a lunge on Dale Whitham that was no different from Flitcrofts earlier indiscretion!
In the closing stages, with FC United desperately looking for a way back into the game began to put some pressure on their hosts, but rathe than scoring goals they added to their card collection with Neville collecting a yellow then Ben Deggan saw yellow then red for a crude lung on Teague second from the end.
Chorley XI: Russ Saunders, Ali Brown, Tom Walker, Andy Teague, Andy Russell, Dale Whitham, Adam Roscoe, Steve Flitcroft, Simon Whalley, Lee McEvilly, Tom Ince
Subs: Wayne Maden, Tom Williams (McEvilly, 87), John Cunliffe (Whaley, 70), Nathan Fairhurst, Chris Howarth
Sent off: STEVE FLITCROFT (77), Ben Deegan (90)
Goals: LEE McEVILLY (39 pen), ANDY TEAGUE (47)
Chorleyfc.com Man of the Match: Adam Roscoe, really making the right win position his own.