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United held at Ashton

FC United were held to a 2-2 draw at Ashton United on Easter Monday despite being 2-0 up after just 10 minutes due to a double from Carlos Roca.

Roca broke the deadlock from the penalty spot in the ninth minute following a foul on Ludovic Quistin and a minute later the United forward made it two.

The Reds were cruising and the lead could easily have been increased with Phil Marsh, Jerome Wright and Angelos Tsiaklis all going close. However, it really was a game of two halves and Ashton struck back in the second 45 through Matty O’Neill (53) and Adam Morning (58) to make it 2-2 and leave United ruing those missed chances.

The only change from the draw at Marine on Good Friday saw Rob Nugent replace skipper David Chadwick and as at Marine, FC started very brightly with all the opening exchanges in their host’s half of the field.

The first chance of the game came on six minutes, with a great spell of passing football playing in Quistin who was unlucky to see his shot tipped wide. Two minutes later, the Guadeloupe international was involved again as his run into the box was ended with a trip from an Ashton defender, giving the referee no option but to point to the spot.

With the Reds’ woeful record from the spot this season, no-one thought that a goal would have been forthcoming but thankfully Roca kept his cool to send the keeper the wrong way and put FC United one up.

The Reds only had to wait a minute to double the lead, when the dangerous Chris Ovington lifted the ball forward for Roca to latch onto and coolly chip the ball over Smith to make it 2-0.

The half progressed in the same way, with FC having most of the chances, Ovington having a shot blocked and Wright having a chance cleared off the line. In fact it was 18 minutes before Ashton threatened the United goal, with Sam Ashton having to be alert to block a snap shot from just inside the box.

FC continued to press with Wright having a couple of good shots blocked. Sam had to be alert as the half came to a close, making a great block from Morning but FC could feel annoyed that the lead at half time wasn’t more.

The second half started just as the first ended with FC in the ascendancy, Roca scooping a shot narrowly over and Tsiaklis having a long range shot well saved by Smith. Nick Swirad also came close to scoring but again the Ashton keeper was equal to him.

As the half wore on, the home side managed to get a foothold into the game and pulled a goal back on 53 minutes, when a shot by Gareth Richards was well saved by Ashton and with the FC defence slow to react, O’Neill followed up and tapped the ball into the net.

That sparked Ashton into action and Swirad had to be alert to keep out Morning and Ashton saved well from Richards. But the equaliser that was threatened came on 57 minutes, when Richards chipped Ashton delightfully from the edge of the box.

From that point on, the home side looked the most likely to score, with both Richards and Kearney guilty of bad misses when they should have done better.

It may be a cliché but this was indeed the classic game of two halves, with Ashton as dominant in the second half, as FC had been in the first and FC may feel happy coming away with a point in the end, from a game that they probably should have had won by half-time.

Report by Steven Wood.

Ashton United
5th April 2010
Played at: Hurst Cross, Ashton-u-Lyne
UniBond League Premier

Drew: 2-2
Half Time: 0-2
Attendance: 707

FC United
1. S Ashton
2. J Holden
3. L Quistin
4. A Tsiaklis
5. R Nugent (capt)
6. N Swirad
7. C Ovington
8. C Krou
9. P Marsh
10. J Wright
11. C Roca

12. J Yoffe
14. B Morris
15. K Jacobs (for 6 77)
16. D Chadwick (for 5 61)
17. S Carden (for 8 64)

Scorer: Roca 10 pen, 11

Ashton United
1. T Smith
2. A Frost
3. D Caldecott
4. N Prescott
5. I Kearney
6. C Robinson (capt) (cautioned (90+1))
7. M O’Neill
8. D Weston
9. G Richards
10. A Morning
11. I Howard
12. B Smith
14. I Bennett (for 4 56)
15. L Dawson
16. O Abadaki (for 10 75)
17. G Murphy (for 8 56)

Scorers: O’Neill 53, Morning 58

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First Posted ~ 13:19 Tue 6 Apr 2010
News ID ~ 2821
Last Updated ~ 13:51 Mon 21 May 2018