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United Trophy victory keeps Colwyn at bay - full report

Two first half goals from Chris Ovington and Jerome Wright were enough for FC United to beat Colwyn Bay 2-1 and book their place in the third and final qualifying round of the FA Carlsberg Trophy for the second season running.

Despite the win, it could have been very different as the visitors flew out of the traps having two great efforts cleared off the line before hitting the bar from the subsequent corner with only two minutes on the clock.

It didn’t take too long for the Reds to get into their stride though as they had the lead just minutes later. A cross field ball from Nicky Platt let Wright in on the left, Wright’s cross to the far post was then met by the on rushing Ovington who fired his volley past Seagulls ‘keeper Chris Sanna to give United the lead.

Colwyn Bay came into the game with a reputation of being a strong, physical team who put themselves about and they did that reputation no harm with crunching challenges and physical presence being used to let the Reds know they were still in the game throughout.

Much of the first half was rather tentative with United’s best opportunities coming from efforts outside of the box from Ovington and Jake Cottrell, going just wide and being easily saved respectively.

At times in the first half United showed the confidence of a team on a great run; which incidentally extended to six straight wins, and at times their ball control alone played the visitors off the park.

United doubled the lead just before half time when Wright showed such confidence to cut inside the box and take Sanna by surprise with an early shot from the left hand side of the box, which flew into the back of the net to give United the two goal cushion.

In the second half, player-manager Dave Challinor sent the Seagulls out fired up and within minutes the visiting team were all over United, looking to get back into the cup tie.

Having said that, the first 20 minutes of the second period were fairly equal until a deep free-kick was headed in by defender Daniel Grannon to reduce the lead to one goal, setting up a nervous finish for the Reds.

Seconds later Colwyn Bay had two great chances to get the equaliser. Firstly, substitute Michael McGraa hit the bar before seeing his effort cleared and then Karl Noon’s flicked header was well saved by Sam Ashton who showed good reactions to keep United in front.

Another positive for the Reds was the second appearance of the season of club captain David Chadwick who came on up front and gave the Colwyn Bay defence a taste of the physical game they had used to good effect all afternoon.

The Seagulls pushed on for the equaliser in the final period of the game, using their player-manager’s long throw to good effect to trouble the United defence. Despite not looking as composed as they had done in previous weeks, the Reds backline held out for victory in a very close game.
Next stop is the Spotland Stadium in Rochdale on Friday night where the Reds will be hoping to cause a major upset against League One opposition during our club’s debut in the FA Cup first round proper.

After that, FC United will be getting back to league action and hopefully turning the good run of form into some valuable points in the Evo-Stik Premier Division but the task couldn’t be much more difficult as it’s a trip to second placed Northwich Victoria.

Report by Craig Phillips

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First Posted ~ 11:55 Sun 31 Oct 2010
News ID ~ 3193
Last Updated ~ 11:55 Sun 31 Oct 2010