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Laxey Football Club


Laxey 2 Corinthians 3 FA Cup

Dudley Butt, 15 February 2020 17:47

This game was played during the peak of Storm Dennis, switched to the Bowl as no other pitch on the Island was playable.

The old cliche, a game of two halves, and it was another cliche, so near, so far, as Laxey suffered a disappointing 2-3 loss.

Absent from the regular Laxey set up were Jack Ridings, Michael Fernandes and Chris Asbridge, but a bonus was the return of Dave Reynolds, which released Max Murley to play in midfield.

There were 64mph winds as the game kicked off, with Laxey playing into the wind.   Corinthians had an early chance but Laxey took the lead on six minutes.

A bit of pressure by Luke Strickett-Morling led to Jordan Cooper picking up the ball on the edge of the area and he scored a magnificent goal from there, giving the keeper no chance.  1-0 to Laxey.

Later Jordan had another good run on goal and his shot from close range was blocked.

An early injury for Aaron Daugherty gave substitute Cameron Nelson his first appearance for the First  Team this season and he acquitted himself well, winning most of his tackles    Laxey began to take control of the game and some good battling by Max to win the ball, led to a couple of attacks. 

Corinthian had a free kick from outside the area and Laxey keeper Rob Slinger made a good save of the slippery ball, but it fell into a melee of players which led to two shots being blocked and a Corinthians player seeming to stamp on Rob.   The referee consulted with his linesman and a Corinthians player was booked, but if the stamp on Rob had been seen, there should have been a red card. 

Max was then chopped down in midfield and the game was getting a bit feisty in the difficult conditions.

Then came a turning point in the game - after a good Laxey build up, Jordan was through, clear from all defenders with just the keeper to beat.    The Corinthians keeper came rushing out of the area and bundled Jordan over just before he could shoot into the open goal.   Jordan was definitely the last man, and every spectator and player expected the keeper to be sent off.   However, the referee just gave him a yellow and awarded Laxey a free kick on the edge of the area, which came to nothing.   

At some stage in this feisty  period Sean Gavin was booked for an innocuous challenge, certainly compared with some of the other tackles going unpunished. 

The second half started with the wind suddenly abated and in fact for a while, once again blowing against Laxey.   Five minutes into the half Corinthians scored to make it 1-1.

A good ball over the top by them to a forward on the left who scored.     Long term referee, spectator Willy Cowley, in line with play informed us that the linesman was 5yards behind play and that the Corinthians goalscorer was definitely offside when he received the ball.  However, it was 1-1.

The weather turned foul again for ten minutes with torrential rain and swirling winds, but strangely not in favour of Laxey.  The omens were not good.

Rob Slinger made a brilliant one handed save to stop a certain goal and keep Laxey in the game and then on a Laxey attack, Max had a good shot blocked on the line.

In the second half Corinthians were getting more of the play for a while, the opposite of the first half. 

Jordan was judged offside during a Laxey arrack and was adjudged to have kicked the ball away, and was shown a yellow card. 

At the other end Dave Reynolds put in some great game saving interventions, once clearing a good cross for a corner, and twice clearing away with crucial headers when Laxey were under extreme pressure. 

The weather changed again, with the wind definitely now against Laxey, and Corinthians were having more of the play 

But then a breakthrough.   The excellent Sean Gavin put pressure on the Corinthians defence high up the field and this led to Max breaking clear and scoring with a delightful chip over the Corinthias keeper.   That made it 2-1 to Laxey with 33 minutes gone.

But just a minute of so later, Corinthians equalised again - a cross from the right was met with a scoring header at the back post.   2-2 with 35 minutes of the half gone. 

Five minutes later Corinthians scored again.    A strong free kick from Corinthians was parried by Rob but bounced out into the area and was bundled in by Corinthians, 3-2 with five minutes to go.  The windy and wet conditions made it almost impossible for either keeper catch the ball clearly so no blame can be attached to Rob.

Laxey went three at the back for the last few minutes.  Screech Dave Corlett who had not put a foot wrong all game was joined by Aaron Bradley and Cameron and they held steady while Dave Reynolds pushed further forward to try to salvage the game.

Jordan then put in a robust challenge on the halfway line, but quite tame compared to some of the previous tackles, but that brought him a second yellow card and he was sent off for the final few minutes. 

Rob then made a stunning save from near point black range to stop a certain goal, and then a few moments later made a great one handed save to turn a blasted shot over the bar for a corner.

Harry Walters came off for the last few minutes to give a first team debut to Sam Greasley. 

And so the game ended with an undeserved loss for Laxey    

There were three incidents in the first half where Corinthians could have had a man sent off - the stamp on Rob, a player kneeing Luke/Aaron Bradley? while he was bundled down on the touchline and most particularly the felling of Jordan by the Corinthians keeper when he was clear through on goal.  If it was worthy of a booking (which was given) then it should have been a red card. .

It was a good performance by Laxey in tricky conditions, and they controlled most of the game which made the loss particularly disappointing.

It is not right to pick out particular players, it was a good team effort, but Sean, Jordan, Dave and Max caught the eye of the independent match reporter, Eric Clague, and he was right.

But the player who caught his eye in particular and would have been in Team of the Week if more games had been played today was the Greens in the Valley Man of the Match

Rob Slinger


The Stats

                                            Laxey   Corinthians

Shots on Target                       6              6

Shots off Target                       1              3

Corners                                    3             7


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