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Late goal denies FC United victory over Alfreton Town

Late goal denies FC United victory over Alfreton Town

An 88th minute equaliser from Alfreton’s James Clifton denied FC United a first home league win of the season with a 1-1 draw on Tuesday evening.

Former QPR midfielder Josh Wallen headed the Reds into the lead on 20 minutes on his second appearance for the club.

Neil Reynolds’ Reds controlled the majority of the game with some fantastic possession football but gradually tired and Clifton levelled late on for the visitors.

A win would have moved FC United out of the relegation zone but the draw leaves them two points from safety and unbeaten in three matches.

At times the men in Red put together some fantastic displays of passing and teamwork, that made it look like the victory was on the cards, but a lack of clinical finishing ultimately cost them in a game they dominated.

FC began the game well and the confidence of a victory and a draw in the last two games had certainly transferred to the play on the pitch, with ambitious through balls and darting runs creating early chances for both Lewis Mansell and Mike Donohue, who were both denied by great stops from Alfreton ‘keeper Sam Ramsbottom.

Ramsbottom’s stop from Donohue resulted in a corner which in turn resulted in the opening goal for FC United as Josh Wallen powerfully headed home the corner kick to grab his first goal for the club, following an impressive debut on Saturday.

The Reds had three great chances to add to their lead before the break but Kurt Willoughby was denied by Ramsbottom, before Mansell again saw his effort saved before Elliot Simoes saw his shot from the rebound go just wide.

Going forward FC looked more confident and Simoes grew into the game with each passing minute, trying ambitious turns and mazy runs that seemed to scare the Alfreton defence into heavy challenges every time.

The one negative was that for all the attacking football that was being created there wasn’t the clinical edge in front of goal and being a cynical fan on the terraces on a cold Tuesday night you sensed that a late sucker punch could be coming.

In the last fifteen minutes FC seemed to lose a bit of their momentum and Alfreton moved forward looking for an equaliser. Just when it seemed like FC would see the game out and take all three points a blocked effort on goal fell into the path of Clifton who fired home to level the scores with just two minutes left.

The late equaliser seemed to wake FC up and for the remaining few minutes they found their attacking mindset once more, but it was too late to mount anything substantial and a point would have to do once more for new manager Neil Reynolds.

The signs are encouraging for FC who moved to 21st in the league with their fifth point in their last three games. But with Saturday’s game away at Blyth being against a team just three places and five points above us it certainly helps having the positive mindset that the past few results has given us.

Website man of the match: Elliot Simoes – A great performance from the youngster who is starting to show great development after only a few months in the first team squad. Looked dangerous and, more importantly, confident when bringing the ball forward.

Report by Craig Phillips

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First Posted ~ 22:09 Tue 30 Oct 2018
News ID ~ 8114
Last Updated ~ 06:37 Tue 6 Nov 2018