Darr hits hat-trick in Charnock Richard’s 5-2 win over Litherland REMYCA
With visitors Litherland REMYCA going through a transitional period with squad changes and new management, it would be fair to say this was deemed a tricky match pre-game.
Despite going behind as early as the eighth minute, Charnock recovered to lead 4-1 at half time.
Although another goal for the visitors came shortly after the break, a last-minute Jordan Darr goal sealed the win and with it a hat-trick.
A bright start from the Greens saw Darr break but was halted by the assistant’s flag and a Jack Gooden cross diverted to goalkeeper McClenaghan.
A minute later Gooden’s snapped volley was deflected away, with Darr being a threat he had the ball in the net on six minutes but again, the offside flag came to the rescue for the visitors.
A slip in midfield by Brad Carsley instigated the opening goal for Litherland, Joseph CAWLEY getting on to the high ball down the middle and rounding Callum Jakovlevs to give the Sefton-based side a shock lead.
It was almost two on 11 minutes when Cawley nodded on to James Hammill in the area, and the driven goalbound shot to the far post was tipped wide by Jakovlevs.
Charnock were forced to move up a gear to get back on level terms and within 11 minutes of the opening goal, they duly obliged.
DARR, who before the game picked up his NWCFL Premier Division player of the month award, converted a Marcus Haydock long ball and stroked it past McClenaghan into the far corner.
Further chances occurred when Darr broke on the right and squared to Carsley who should have scored but planted the shot straight at McClenaghan instead.
On 34 minutes, Charnock finally got ahead. Lewis Haydock had all the running after winning the ball from Carter Costello on the right, finding DARR with a pinpoint pass to the back post.
Brad CARSLEY got the first of his two goals of the afternoon when he met Will Riding’s cross from the right, volleying in on the turn which crept into the near post.
Darr turned provider to find CARSLEY going down the middle, shrugging off his marker he unleashed a 20-yard shot which powered past the hapless McClenaghan.
It could have been 5-1 on 48 minutes when the base of the post denied Darr a hat-trick when his angled shot beat the keeper.
A minute later Litherland reduced the arrears when Paul SPEED’s long-range effort went in via Jakovlevs hand and crossbar.
Charnock responded and James Hammill’s 55th-minute volley flashed just wide and Carsley headed over a Riding corner from the right.
With 20 minutes remaining Charnock had a double chance to go further ahead, Darr’s cross just missing the top of Gooden’s head, then Carsley heading Marcus Haydock’s centre wide.
Changes were made as Spencer Bibby replaced Matt Westwell just after Jakovlevs pushed away a Hammill free kick.
Danny Regan replaced Gooden and as the clock ticked into the 90th minute Mark Woods replaced Carsley.
The icing on the cake was delivered once again by DARR, when a pass from Fairhurst found Marcus Haydock forward on the left, hitting a first time pass, the marksman moved in and slipped the ball under McClenaghan to finish off the game with a flourish.
CHARNOCK : Jakovlevs, Green, M Haydock, Westwell, Gibson, L Haydock, Riding, Fairhurst (c), B Carsley, Darr, Gooden. Subs Bibby (for Westwell), Regan (for Gooden), Woods (for Carsley). Subs (not used): Young, Ellison.
Charnock Richard are next in action on Tuesday evening as they host Kendal Town in the Lancashire Challenge Trophy second-round match.
The winners of that tie will progress to face Southport in the quarter-final.
Charnock Richard Reserves won 3-0 at Garstang Reserves in the West Lancashire League Division Two, Sam Milburn with a hat-trick.