Charnock bounce back but need ruthless edge
Charnock Richard bounced back from a disappointing defeat at City of Liverpool in midweek to return to winning ways with a 3-1 victory at Hanley Town.
Charnock certainly showed no after effects from the game at City of Liverpool and once again they produced some fine attacking football.
The opening 30 minutes saw plenty of goalmouth action and it was an entertaining match for the 98 spectators.
Charnock created the most chances, but with opposition keeper Joe Hemmings on form, they found it difficult to score from open play.
Matt Davison wasted two chances to open the scoring with Mark Adams thwarted by Hemmings one-on-one.
Ryan Schofield headed a right wing corner into the side netting from beyond the far post, and Nathan Fairhurst’s cross was just nicked off Carl Grimshaw’s head by last ditch defending, with Davison frustrated by Hemmings once again as the Villagers peppered the hosts’ goal in the opening 15 minutes.
The hosts survived the early onslaught and with debutant keeper Andy Dawber on hand to tip over an excellent overhead kick by Dan Cope as The Villagers were forced to defend.
But after a couple of Grimshaw chances, Andy Westwell’s men took the lead from the penalty spot in the 28th minute.
Blowers dived in on Davison in the right hand corner of the area and Fairhurst rifled home the spot-kick.
A lack of defensive cover cost Charnock in the 31st minute.
With Charnock committed to attack the home team broke on the counter and Stair went clear after dancing past a couple of defenders to level.
The final 15 minutes of the first half were relatively quiet after all the activity earlier in the half, as Woods did well to get across to block a shot, and Hemmings made another fine save at the expense of Davison.
The second half started dramatically, with Fairhurst releasing Grimshaw to sprint in. His shot cannoned back off the far post and his follow up shot was handled on the line by Josh Thorne.
The referee pointed to the spot and showed Thorne a straight red card, with Fairshurst scoring the penalty.
Charnock used their extra man advantage to dominate play for the following 30 minutes, but Hemmings continued to deal with everything that Charnock threw at him.
The Villagers did not take their chances, and found themselves, in the final quarter of the game, only one goal ahead, and having to defend, with Jacob Vernon wasting a free header as the hosts piled forward in search of an equaliser.
The victory was finally confirmed for the team in green in the ninth minute of added time when Charnock broke after a Hanley free kick, and substitute Connor Loftus laid the ball off to Davison, who found the corner of the net. The win took Charnock’s points tally up to 12 from five games and moved them back up the North West Counties Premier Division table into second.
In the West Lancashire League it was a case of ups and downs.
Euxton Villa knocked Blackpool Wren Rovers out of the Richardson Cup.
A convincing 3-0 win saw Villa knock the cup holders out of the competition at the first round stage.
George Davies gave the hosts the lead in the 38th minute, Patrick Bibby added the second in the 63rd minute and Davies popped up once again to clinch the win just four minutes later.
While Euxton were on cloud nine Coppull United lost 4-0 to Haslingdon Reserves as they exited the cup.