July 30 2016 20:13:52.
By Keith Long
- Pre-Season Activity (First Team)
Beechfield United’s First Team played a couple of friendly games on Saturday 9th & 16th July as part of their build-up to the forthcoming 2016/2017 season. With several possible new signings on view Beechy met Westbury Sports at Salford Sports Village and following an entertaining contest suffered a 5-4 defeat. Westbury took the lead in the tenth minute and their long ball tactic paid added dividends when the visitors led 2-0 five minutes later but Beechy soon reduced the arrears via an own goal. On twenty-three minutes Alex Hunter and Louis Duff combined and Rob Lockley supplied the perfect finish for 2-2. Mike Rogerson and Luke Johnston defended superbly as Westbury continued to create a constant flow of counter-attacks and United’s keeper on the day Steve Naylor was forced to make two brilliant saves. Thanks to a neat close range finish from Louis Duff Beechy edged 3-2 up but following a corner Westbury were back level four minutes before half time. Beechy made several changes at the break and were punished for a slow start when the Westbury regained the lead through their No11 who had enough time and space to volley the ball into the net. Both teams continued to compete fiercely for possession and Beechy deservedly made it 4-4 after Alex Hunter forced an error from a Westbury defender and Alfie Belcher fired the ball low past the keeper. Slightly against the run of play Westbury grabbed their match winning goal in the 71st minute.
United’s next opponents were Leigh Athletic and Beechy who fielded a strong line-up throughout the first half looked highly impressive in the opening quarter-hour. Alex Hunter, Craig Massey, Rob Lockley and Brad Sixsmith had chances to give United the lead but it was the visitors who opened the scoring thanks to their No10. Beechy found themselves 2-0 down at the break and made eight changes and winning several corners almost reduced the arrears. Steven Erskine and Gary Wallis worked hard in midfield and though United attacked non-stop clear-cut chances were a rarity and Leigh Athletic rarely wasting possession took a 3-0 lead. Late in the contest Alfie Belcher scored a consolation goal for Beechy.