UCFB Etihad Campus Men’s 2nd 2-5 UCLAN 6th

Regional Arena, Manchester, 15/03/17

By Josh Bunting 

Darren Murray’s first game in charge of UCFB ended in defeat at the Regional Arena.

It all started so well when just five minutes in to the match UCFB took the lead through Saxton Wraith when he met a corner with a bullet header, giving the visiting keeper Carlos Agreda no chance.

UCLAN almost responded immediately when Joe Noblet found himself on the edge of the area, curling the ball just inches wide of Jamie Bradley’s post.

Bradley then made a fantastic low save to deny UCLAN in the 25th minute, but just a minute later he was helpless to keep out a UCLAN equaliser.

UCLAN were now in control, creating three great chances in the space of 15 minutes, including a miss from a corner just two yards out.

Murray’s side had one more opportunity before half time when Daniel Blacker was played through but he fired his shot across the face of goal. Then on the stroke of half-time UCLAN thought they had taken the lead only for the goal to be disallowed for offside.

The second half started in a similar fashion to how the first ended with a UCLAN chance as Bradley made another good stop. The visitor’s pressure eventually paid off though as UCFB failed to deal with a cross, and the ball falling perfectly to Lyons who thumped the ball into the net.

Their lead was extended on 62 minutes when UCLAN scored a fine free-kick from 25 yards out. UCFB’s heads dropped and UCLAN started to take advantage, the fourth goal coming shortly afterwards through a deflection.

UCFB pulled a goal back just minutes later through a piece of individual brilliance from Blacker as he ran from deep and chipped the ball over Agreda in the UCLAN goal. UCFB then nearly had a third as Matthew Garbett’s shot was cleared off the line.

UCLAN grabbed a fifth with 15 minutes to go when they took advantage of a defensive error before slotting the ball past the onrushing Bradley. Captain Bradley was putting in a fine performance for the home side in goal and he was on hand to make another good save as he tipped away Lyons’ low shot.

UCFB had one final chance for a third in the last minute when Blacker was put through one on one with Agreda, but he hit his shot straight at the keeper.

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