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United in seventh heaven

Two goals in the first two minutes effectively wrapped up the game before it had barely begun, as United wasted no time in brushing Atherton Laburnum Rovers aside.

With some fans still taking their places on the terraces, the Reds shot out of the starting blocks as Rory Patterson deftly lobbed the static Atherton defence to find Stuart Rudd for a straight forward one-on-one finish with the keeper.

From the restart Alex Mortimer exploited space down the left to force a free kick from which Robert Nugent headed home unchallenged. And before ten minutes were up it was 3-0 after the impressive Mortimer curled a sweet free kick over Kiernan in the Atherton goal.

United continued to press forward and exploit the gaps in the home side’s three-man midfield throughout. Both Rhodri Giggs and Patterson came close before Rudd claimed his second with a simple tap-in on the half hour mark.

Josh Howard made it 5-0 just before the break after the hapless Atherton keeper spilled a long-range free kick.

The second-half saw chances diminish as Atherton defended with greater determination. Adie Orr, Liam Coyne and Steve Smith all came on from the bench with Orr unlucky not to capitalise on some characteristically energetic runs down the left.

It wasn’t until ten minutes from the end that United broke the second-half deadlock when Simon Carden scored number six after some intricate passing on the edge of the penalty box.

Rudd rounded off an excellent personal display by claiming a deserved hat-trick in the final seconds to keep United top of the league and send the majority of the 1,325 crowd into seventh heaven.

Mark Swanwick

Match information:

Atherton LR
1. C Kiernan
2. W Huggins
3. S Myerscough
4. R Hope (capt)
5. C Drake
6. A Baird
7. S Wellstead
8. S Park
9. R Arnold
10. I Givin
11. D Coffey

12. T Wade (5, 55)
14. M Weedon (11, 45)
15. D Boden (12, 80)

FC United
1. S Ashton
2. M Taylor
3. A Mortimer
4. S Spencer
5. D Chadwick
6. R Nugent
7. R Giggs
8. S Carden
9. S Rudd
10. J Howard
11. R Patterson

12. S Smith (4, 50)
14. L Coyne (5, 50)
15. A Orr (7, 50)

Scorers: Rudd 1, 30, 90, Nugent 2, Mortimer 8, Howard 40, Carden 85.

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First Posted ~ 12:40 Mon 28 Aug 2006
News ID ~ 466
Last Updated ~ 17:34 Fri 11 Oct 2013