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Five star United fight back to steal a point

A stunning comeback from 5-2 down with 20 minutes remaining capped a sensational game in which FC United stole a share of the points during a ten goal thriller at Gigg Lane on Wednesday night.

It was a bitterly cold evening but the 1,714 who braved the elements were treated to a special match which will long be remembered by the United faithful who saw their team extended its unbeaten run to six games.

Laird winger Eddie Jebb took the lead for the visitors on 17 minutes before Simon Carden levelled proceedings after 20 minutes. Kyle Wilson pounced three minutes later for his 18th goal of the season to poke United ahead but the Merseysiders were 4-2 up by the break with goals from John Collins and two from Mark Reed.

Reed struck again 20 minutes into the second half to complete his hat-trick leaving the Reds looking dead and buried. However, Wilson grabbed his second of the night with 20 minutes to go before Chris Baguley and Nick Robinson came off the bench to rescue a point for the hosts in the last ten minutes.

The contest was United’s first since the 3-0 win away to Worksop and it seemed to show as the Reds looked rusty as the game opened. The visitors played most of the football and the Reds midfield was struggling to get into the game early on.

Jebb was an early source of trouble with his fast, jinky runs on the right and he opened the scoring, beating Alex Skidmore before shifting the ball to his left foot and curling it around Sam Ashton.

Going a goal down seemed to give United the kick up the backside they needed and they came close to equalising almost instantaneously after Jerome Wright played a neat one-two with Danny Warrender before seeing his shot strongly saved by Laird ’keeper Richard Whiteside.

It wasn’t long before United got the equaliser and with two goals in two minutes they took the lead. The first came when Wright broke on the left, before his cross across the box found the ever reliable Simon Carden who put the ball away.

The goal which gave United the lead was quite simply one of the best goals United have scored all season. Carlos Roca knocked the ball to Wright just inside his own half on the left touchline. Wright picked out a sublime ball over the top finding Wilson, who took the ball down in his stride before firing United into a 2-1 lead.

Having gone in front the odds would have been on United pushing on for more, but all credit to the visitors who came back strongly towards the end of the first session. They got their equaliser from a corner on the left, drifted to the far post and headed home strongly by captain Collins on the half hour mark.

Six minutes later and striker Reed got the first of the night after some good work on the wing by the dangerous Jebb saw him play Reed in to coolly put away and put his team 3-2 up. On the stroke of half time Reed grabbed his second beating the United offside trap and effortlessly lobbing over Ashton to put Cammell Laird 4-2 up after only 45 minutes.

To say that the Laird’s second half performance became a bit negative would be something of an understatement, as from the opening whistle they looked to run down the clock at every available opportunity.

Margy sensed his team would need some fresh legs to get the game going again and brought on the duo of Chris Baguley and Papis Dieyte. The Senegalese midfielder almost got his first goal in a red shirt after delivering a rasping shot from almost 30 yards out which rattle the post. Rob Nugent was unlucky to fire the rebound over from less than six yards out.

From there on in every time Dieyte got the ball he was encouraged to shoot by the United fans. However, just when things were starting to look up, the visitors again made United pay. Laird went 5-2 up after taking advantage of some slack passing by the United defence which allowed Reed to wrap up his hat-trick with probably the simplest finish of the night.

At this point many teams would have licked their wounds and tried to play for some pride. But with United you always know the game’s not over until the final whistle. Margy threw Nick Robinson on looking for an unthinkable three goals with just over 20 minutes left.

United got the first from a Chris Baguley corner which was headed down at the near post by Wilson, who saw the ball bounce into the roof of the net giving him 19 goals in 19 games whilst making the score on the night 5-3.

Surely no more than a consolation goal? Well"¦ no. Because Untied came forward again and when Robinson crossed form the left Baguley headed strongly from six yards out making the score 5-4 to the visitors and setting up a grandstand finish with exactly ten minutes left.

Time ticked away and with two minutes left the Merseysiders looked to run down the clock by keeping the ball over by the corner flag. However, they lost possession and United quickly went on a break. Baguley brought the ball out of defence and released Wright, who came forward before firing a ball across goal and finding the outstretched leg of substitute Robinson who grabbed an unlikely equaliser.

The United faithful asked for a sixth but it wasn’t to be and rather than look on the game as dropping two points, United will take great heart from the fact that once more the never say die attitude that brought the club together was again intact on the field when it counts most.

With the point United moved to 22 points and made it six games since they tasted defeat. The rest of the month looks like a busy schedule but United have the momentum to trouble teams in the league and in the big FA Trophy match next weekend.

Report by Craig Phillips.

Match information:

FC United
S Ashton
L Foster
A Skidmore
D Warrender
R Nugent (capt)
A Turner
A Carden
S Carden
K Wilson
J Wright (cautioned 45)
C Roca
C Baguley (for 2 56)
N Robinson (for 3 67)
P Dieyte (for 11 56)
J Edwards

Scorers: S Carden 20, Wilson 23 70, Baguley 80, Robinson 89

Cammell Laird
R Whiteside
A Sheehan
C Adamson (cautioned 27)
L Atherton
J Collins (capt)
O James (cautioned 68)
E Jebb
C Clampitt
M Reed
A Hay
M Rimmer
R Foulkes (for 6 83)
J Couch (for 11 76)
M Holt
D Andrews
I Cooke

Scorers: Jebb 17, Collins 30, Reed 37, 45(+2), 65

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First Posted ~ 17:36 Fri 14 Nov 2008
News ID ~ 1931
Last Updated ~ 12:55 Mon 21 May 2018