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FC United suffer narrow defeat to Colwyn Bay - full report

FC United were narrowly beaten 1-0 at home to second placed Colwyn Bay on Wednesday evening, in a game that the Reds dominated and thoroughly deserved at least a point from the match.

The fact that the visitors goal came from Jon Newby on 28 minutes via a misplaced back-pass from Jake Cottrell, with one of the few attacks from The Seagulls in the evening made the defeat all the more difficult to swallow.

United began the game brightly looking to get back to winning ways after the 3-2 defeat at Kendal last Tuesday and must have surely thought they had the lead 15 minutes in as three chances in quick succession were kept out.

A well worked move on the left saw Lee Neville break into the box, his ball across goal was met by Mike Norton who saw his effort saved by Seagulls ‘keeper Chris Sanna. Matthew Wolfenden pounced on the rebound only to see Sanna save again and then Norton beat Sanna but his shot was cleared by a defender on the line to leave United feeling frustrated, which would become a theme of the evening.

The Seagulls nearly punished United immediately as Newby took the ball around Sam Ashton and squared across goal for Robert Hopley but the pressure put on Hopley by the United defence saw a good chance for the opening goal turn into a corner for the visitors.

The combination of Norton and Jerome Wright worked well all evening and only minutes after the visitors should have been a goal up Norton played a throughball for Wright. The winger’s pace saw him leave the last defender behind him but as he tried to put the ball past Sanna he saw his effort saved by the ‘keeper’s legs.

Moments later, Wright repaid the favour as he found space on the left, his ball across the box was just out of the reach of Norton, who couldn’t stretch his leg far enough to get the connection that would have put United a goal up.

As is often the way in this game if you fail to convert your chances you will be punished and when Cottrell misjudged the pace on a back-pass to Ashton, former Bury striker Newby was gifted with a great opportunity. The man who played more than 150 times for the Shakers found the back of the net at Gigg Lane once more as he coolly slotted home to give Colwyn Bay the lead.

United took the goal in their stride and went back to putting the pressure on The Seagulls defence for the 15 minutes before the break but The Seagulls looked to have got what they came for. The Welsh side used their physical presence to make life difficult for United and defended their slender lead well.

The second half began much in the same vain with United pushing forward and The Seagulls defending deep and hard, leaving their mark with several crunching tackles throughout the half.

Wright and Norton continued to work well together with another ball from the left being just too far away from Norton’s outstretched foot and then Wright’s cross just went past Norton’s head leaving United’s leading scorer this season wondering what he had to do to get his name on the scoresheet.

Sensing the game was there for the taking, manager Karl Marginson changed things around bringing on Carlos Roca to add something different down the right and pushing Wolfenden up front with Norton in a bid to get the elusive goal the United faithful were craving.

Undoubtedly the best chance of the game came 15 minutes from time when a route one ball from the defence released Wolfenden, who rounded Sanna and pulled the ball back for Roca in the centre of the box. Despite pressure from a few defenders Roca had a golden opportunity with no ‘keeper in the net but scuffed his shot well wide.

Despite the introduction of club captain David Chadwick in the battering ram role up front in the latter stages, United couldn’t make the breakthrough and will feel this was a golden opportunity to catch up with one of the league’s high fliers and make our way into the play-off picture.

It was a good performance from the Reds and although it sounds strange; it was probably one of the best performances a team could put in without coming away from the game with anything.

If United carry this kind of performance into the schedule of five games in 14 days, then they could well find themselves creeping up the table and dare we say it? Closer to the play-off places. But they need to rediscover that killer instinct to get points on the board.

Report by Craig Phillips

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First Posted ~ 10:05 Thu 3 Feb 2011
News ID ~ 3393
Last Updated ~ 10:05 Thu 3 Feb 2011