POSTED: February 18 2020 19:40:12. By Keith Long
- Unlucky 1st Team Get Blown Away
Weather conditions at Salford Sports Village were pretty horrendous when Beechfield United played Rochdale Sacred Heart for the second successive Saturday. United were looking for revenge after they had suffered a 2-0 defeat following the previous Manchester Football League Premier Division fixture.
After making five team changes Beechy operating with a 4-3-3 system kicked off the match and winning a couple of instant throw-ins quickly forced some defending from the visitors back four. But finding a good attacking rhythm Sacred Heart worked the ball confidently around the pitch with the majority of their best moves featuring their talented No11. United came within inches of taking the lead following a great move between Craig Massey, Ellis Carr and Jamie Sinnott who's fine effort bounced off the top of the crossbar. Guilty of conceding far too many free kicks Beechy had keeper Rob Harrison to thank when he managed to divert the ball to safety after a swerving low shot from Hearts No10. Both teams did well to play some constructive football in the appalling conditions and United's battling qualities were a big feature of their play especially in the first half. On four occasions Man of the Match Mike Rogerson and Louis Duff produced superbly well timed ball winning tackles when the visitors launched some swift counter-attacks.
United forced several corners taken by Jamie Sinnott and Craig Massey and Beechy continually went close to opening the scoring but the Hearts keeper proved difficult to beat. Numerous stoppages hardly ruined the flow of the game and another great save by Rob Harrison then last ditch clearances from Scott Hamer and Gareth Mooney kept it at 0-0 and the teams shared the score line at half time. Within a minute of the restart United were hit by a real sucker punch after they were caught napping and Sacred Heart were gifted the lead. As the weather deteriorated Beechy looked slightly disheveled and adapting better to the gale force wind and driving rain Sacred Heart hardly wasted possession as they maintained a tight grip on the game. Once again the visitors No11 was heavily involved in 80% of Hearts well controlled and crafted counter-attacks.
Facing constant pressure United's makeshift back four of Louis Duff, Mike Rogerson, Scott Hamer and Danny Royle had to work overtime. Rob Harrison who was struggling with a leg injury dived in vain to reach a well struck low drive from Hearts No7 that found the corner of the net that put the visitors 2-0 up. Chances for Beechy were few and far between as they lacked fluency and pace going forward and a rather frustrating ninety minutes for United got worse. After winning possession on the right flank from about forty five yards with the help of a powerful gust of wind Sacred Hearts No5 scored a spectacular third goal for the visitors.