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Ten men Reds pass Tameside test

FC United had to dig in deep and endure a tense finale at the Tameside Stadium on Monday night to beat title contenders Curzon Ashton 3-1 after William Ahern was sent off for retaliation.

Goals from Simon Carden and Stuart Rudd helped the Reds to victory making it eleven wins out of eleven as they continue to set an electric pace in the North West Counties Division One.

Simon Carden broke the deadlock seven minutes before half time when he scored his second goal in three days nudging the ball home in a goal mouth scramble after Rudd had headed against the bar from a corner.

But United were forced to defend well against a physical home side who played the long-ball game to good effect. Mortimer and Spencer went close for the Reds and Sam Ashton was called in to action on a number of occasions picking up a heavy knock after a brave point blank save moments before half time.

Not long after the interval, Josh Howard broke down the right and whipped in a wicked cross that a flailing Watson could only divert into his own net. United looked to have wrapped the game up and could well have done so if Patterson and the tireless Rudd had taken their chances.

However, United’s dominance and the three points were thrown into jeopardy when Ahern was sent off with just less than 20 minutes to go. Tempers began fraying on both sides in what was becoming an increasingly heated affair and the young midfielder lashed out after being on the receiving end of a nasty challenge from James Agoo.

Curzon snatched one back to set up a dramatic last ten minutes as, despite appeals for handball, a forceful in-form striker Michael Norton latched on to a throughball and muscled his way passed Matty Taylor to fire past Ashton.

A nervy finish saw United’s injured keeper continue to perform heroics as the Reds looked to hang on and hope for chances on the break. Their persistence paid off when Curzon’s keeper ventured out of his area once too often and Rudd put him under pressure to steal possession. He then rounded the stranded shot stopper before firing home his 13th goal of the season from 25 yards out, in off the far post.

Mark Swanwick

Match information:

Curzon Ashton
1. A Timms
2. S Hinchcliffe
3. S Ball
4. D Birch
5. A Watson
6. C Ball
7. S Moores
8. J Ogoo
9. M Norton
10. N Fisher
11. N Allen
Subs
12. P Garvey (10, 67)
14. C Holt (3, 73)
15. C Worsley

Goal: Norton 81
Booked: Birch 65

FC United
1. S Ashton
2. M Taylor
3. A Mortimer
4. S Spencer
5. D Chadwick (Capt.)
6. R Nugent
7. J Howard
8. S Carden
9. S Rudd
10. W Ahern
11. R Patterson
Subs
12. R Giggs (7, 90)
14. A Orr (9, 90)
15. S Smith (2, 83)

Goals: Carden 38, OG (Watson) 51, Rudd 88.
Sent off: Ahern 72.
Booked: Rudd 41, Patterson 53.

Attendance: 1,683

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First Posted ~ 09:09 Tue 19 Sep 2006
News ID ~ 529
Last Updated ~ 17:34 Fri 11 Oct 2013