March 09 2019 10:40:30.
By Keith Long
- Missed Opportunity For Vital League Win
Needing three points help lift themselves off the bottom of the Premier Division table Beechfield United's 1st Team had high hopes of getting a winning result from their away game at Stockport Georgians. But things didn't go according to plan and following a slightly below-par performance Beechy suffered a 3-2 defeat. Enjoying early possession Georgians created several forceful attacks especially down the right wing and both Luke Johnston and Marcus Belcher adopted the safety first option when clearing the ball back downfield. Working hard off the ball upfront Jordan Jones-Waite and Kurtis Lee several times got into good positions but couldn't taken advantage of the half chances on offer. The hosts No10 was always a threat via some mazy runs and right back Mike Rogerson knew he was expecting a difficult ninety minutes. Georgians opening goal in the eighth minute came from a move down the right wing when Beechy failed to deal with a high swerving cross gifting the hosts No9 a free header. Seeking a quick equaliser United forced three successive corners but Beechy were soon back in defensive mode as the hosts continued to look dangerous with more stylish counter-attacking football.
Called into action several times within the opening quarter-hour was United's keeper Robert Harrison and on one occasion he remained alert and confidently dealt with a long range effort from Gregorians No10. A long diagonal pass by Marcus Belcher sent Jordan Jones-Waite racing past the hosts No6 but when inside the area the Beechy striker overran the ball. Casually moving the ball around with an an air of confidence Georgians looked likely to score again but United's offside tactic dealt with the threat. United came within inches of equalising when Jamie Sinnott's brilliant pass found Jordan Jones-Waite in space and a tremendous strike by Beechy's No10 hit the crossbar with the keeper well beaten. But a large percentage of play centered in United's half of the pitch as Georgians impressive style caused Beechy all sorts of defensive problems. But Beechy's overall performance improved as the first half progressed and a great move in the last five minutes between Marcus Belcher, Louis Duff and Jordan Jones-Waite set-up Kurtis Lee who's effort was just off target.
Kicking-off the second half Beechy put pressure on their opponents and twice Gregorians No5 had to concede a corner following swift United counter-attacks. Despite a suspicion of offside against Gregorians No7 he had enough time to put the ball into the area and though United had several attempts to clear the ball it was eventually bundled into the net by the hosts No9. That goal put Gregorians 2-0 up after forty nine minutes and obviously heaped more pressure on Beechy who continued to rely heavily on an overworked back four. United won a free kick in a central area of the pitch but from about twenty five yards Jamie Sinnott blasted the ball wide of the target. In the next minute an attempt by Louis Duff from roughly the same distance also went wide as Beechy looked a greater threat going forward. After surviving another attacking surge from the hosts United reduced the arrears in the 66th minute when Jamie Sinnott controlled an inch perfect pass from Kurtis Lee and casually fired the ball past the keeper. Two fine headed clearances by Marcus Belcher and a superb last ditch tackle in the area by Chris Ferris temporary kept United just one goal behind.
Beechy Manager Steven Erskine replaced Kurtis Lee for the last eighteen minutes and he quickly adopted his normal role in midfield. Louis Duff produced another brilliant ball winning tackle as Gregorians rarely wasting possession kept creating chances and a powerful strike by their No6 bounced back into play off the crossbar. The hosts took a 3-1 lead after slack United defending just before Gregorians were reduced to ten men following a red card incident. In the latter stages United played some of their best soccer of the match and were rewarded with a second goal thanks to a superb pass from Man of the Match Louis Duff that put Jordan Jones-Waite through on a clear run and the Beechy No10 nonchalantly lobbed the ball over the keeper into the empty net. Enough time was still available for United to force at least a draw but wasted possession at key moments ruined their chances.