September 22 2017 21:21:15.
By Keith Long
- 1st Team Suffer Narrow Defeat
At Salford Sports Village Beechfield United 1st Team were back in Division 1 action with a home game against Chadderton Reserves but Beechy lost what proved to be an absorbing contest 3-2. Operating with a 3-5-2 system United who made two team changes were expecting a fairly tough ninety minutes. The visitors were awarded the games first free kick in the opening two minutes and Luke Johnston produced a vital clearance when under pressure. Rob Lockley delivered a perfectly weighted long pass downfield that dropped over the last defender and Jordan Jones-Waite had a great chance to opening the scoring but his shot on target deflected off the keeper for a Beechy corner. On six minutes Chadderton grabbed the lead when their No9 managed to evade a couple of tackles and from just inside the area fired the ball past Robert Harrison and high into the net. After winning possession on the right flank Mike Phythian went on a surging run and superbly set-up Jordan Jones-Waite who was denied again by the brave Chadderton keeper.
Mike Rogerson won a couple of important aerial duels just before United equalised in the 11th minute thanks to a neat move involving Jordan Jones-Waite and Craig Massey who's deep cross was met at the back post by the unmarked Jamie Sinnott and last seasons leading goal scorer netted via a close range header. Briefly keeping the pressure on their opponents Beechy were victim of a few dubious offside decisions. There was a real competitive edge to the match as both teams competed fiercely for possession and inspired by a terrific midfield display from Man of the Match Steven Erskine United went 2-1 up. At the end of a quick counter-attack a goalmouth scramble developed and after creating the perfect angle in the area Jamie Sinnott fired the ball low past the keeper. Chadderton responded with some powerful attacking play and their No11 weaved his way into a decent shooting position and he was denied a goal when Andrzej Browne produced a brilliant goal line clearance.
The same player was involved in the move that led to the visitors getting back on level terms when Robert Harrison misjudged the strength of the wingers low drive and after the ball rebounded off the Beechy keeper the Chadderton No9 slotted home the rebound. United faced some heavy pressure as the visitors moved the ball around the artificial surface with speed and accuracy and Chadderton regained the lead with their third goal after forty three minutes. Following a high cross from the right flank the ball glanced off a Chadderton player but instead of awarding United a goal kick the referee indicated a corner to the visitors and the Chadderton No 10 rose highest to met the flag kick and headed the ball into the net off the underside of the crossbar. After dealing with a brief spell of pressure early in the second half Beechy played with more self-belief and a great move between Jamie Sinnott and Craig Massey nearly made it 3-3.
Continuing to enjoy a greater share of the ball United created a flux of decent chances and Chris Ferris, Mike Phythian and Jordan Jones-Waite all attempted to beat the keeper with efforts from long-range. Beechy made a couple of changes in the 65th minutes when Andrzej Browne and Jordan Jones-Waite were replaced by Carl Ravenscroft and Kurtis Lee who was quickly involved in the action firing the ball just wide after a free kick. Chadderton remained well organised in all areas as Beechy battled for an equaliser and United's third tactical change took place when Gary Wallis took over from Craig Massey on seventy one minutes. Despite wasting possession with far too many over hit long balls United deserved another goal and a header by Carl Ravenscroft forced a fine save from the Chadderton keeper then following a corner in the closing stages Rob Lockley headed the ball inches wide of the target.