After making a fifteen-mile journey to play an evening game Beechfield United’s First Team produced a first-class all-round display against Uppermill FC and were rewarded with a 4-1 victory.
Making a confident start to this Division 1 fixture United enjoyed a greater share of the ball and Steven Erskine, Mike Phythian and Chris Ferris were able to control the midfield area.
Alex Hunter had a great chance to open the scoring after a pinpoint cross from Jamie Sinnott but as they continued to create some brilliant soccer Beechy eventually took the lead.
The referee awarded United a free kick just outside the area and Steven Erskine casually curled the ball into the corner of the net. United’s back four of Mike Rogerson, Gary Wallis, Luke Johnston and Andrzej Browne looked highly assured as they dealt with Uppermill’s use of the long ball tactic but on one occasion Gary Wallis was forced to clear the ball off the goal line.
The home side also put pressure on Beechy from most dead ball situations but United had the ability to quickly turn defence into attack and at the end of one great move Jamie Sinnott forced an acrobatic save from the Uppermill keeper. Andrzej Browne and Mike Phythian combined in a slick move and Chris Ferris saw his effort curl inches wide just before Jamie Sinnott put Beechy 2-0 up in the 42nd minute.
As the second half developed it quickly produced a similar pattern to the first and Uppermill reduced the arrears courtesy of their number eight who after being left unmarked scored via a close range header then the same player was sent off following a red card incident.
Stepping up a gear United created chances galore and in a one-on-one Mike Phythian hammered the ball straight at the keeper then Alex Hunter shot wide from close range as Beechy attacked non-stop. Always a threat via the swift counter-attack Uppermill almost equalised but after the ball deflected off a defender United keeper Robert Harrison showed his class with an excellent one-handed save.
Totally dominating possession in the last fifteen minutes Beechy could easily have scored following every attack and eventually United were able to increase their lead in the 85th minute when Alex Hunter took advantage of a mistake by the Uppermill keeper and fired the ball into the net at the second attempt and Beechy led 3-1.
Three minutes later the three points were guaranteed when Jamie Sinnott produced a stunning finish from twenty yards to complete the scoring.
Man of the Match was Gary Wallis.
On Saturday afternoon United were away to Leigh Athletic and despite an above-average performance Beechy suffered a 3-2 defeat. Heavy rain fell throughout the match though both teams managed to produce a fairly entertaining contest but United conceded two goals following some lacklustre defending.
Leigh Athletic grabbed the lead in the 12th minute but United responded with some positive attacking play. Gary Wallis and Jamie Sinnott came close to an equaliser then on the twenty-minute mark Beechy tailed 2-0 and minutes later the home side thought they had made it 3-0 but an effort from the Leigh Athletic number ten bounced off the crossbar.
Early in the second half United got a goal back when the Leigh Athletic keeper misjudged the pace off the ball off the wet surface and gifted Jamie Sinnott the chance to easily find the back of the empty net.
The fast action switched constantly from end to end and after another defensive error United gifted Leigh Athletic a 3-1 lead and Beechy eventually introduced their three substitutes. Louis Duff set-up a chance for Gary Wallis but his half volley hit the crossbar with the keeper beaten.
Leigh Athletic kept the pressure on United’s back four in which Man of the Match Luke Johnston was a key figure though United kept attacking at every opportunity and a superb pass over the last defender by Alfie Belcher found Jamie Sinnott and United’s leading goalscorer netted his eleventh goal in nine games for 3-2. Beechy came close to an equaliser in the last few minutes as they forced some resolute defending from their opponents.