Skelmersdale Utd 2-4 City of Liverpool
Skelmersdale United suffered defeat after conceding 3 goals in a manic 15 minute spell at the start of the first half.
It was the return of former manager Paul McNally with his City of Liverpool side, containing 8 former “Blues” in his Match Day squad and it was the “Purps” who started the brightest, taking the lead with a stunning free kick from Hazelhurst that left Sam Ashton with no chance after just 3 minutes.
It was the skillful midfielder who nearly doubled the lead with a acrobatic effort that went just wide. The Veteran Danny Mitchley now in the “purple” colours did extend the advantage on 15 minutes, a McGrath cross found the Hitman in space and he glanced home. United were run ragged and McGrath added a third just two minutes later a fine solo run and a curling shot from the edge of the box put Skem on the rack.
United could have pulled a goal back, a Taylor Prescott cross was headed just wide by Mcloughlin and Max McCarthy should have done better when set free, his charge down on goal saw his shot go marginally wide. United had an appeal for a penalty turned down Ste Milne bundled over in the box but the ref was having none of it.
Just on the stroke of half time the visitors nearly added a 4th a Mitchley shot hit the foot of the post and an onrushing Clair couldn’t convert.
United started the second period brighter, the introduction of Abdul Djalo gave Skem some impetus and a number of telling moves should have seen them back in the game but McCall in the away goal was not seriously tested. Elliott Morris ripped his marker and delivered a telling cross but the onrushing attack couldn’t quite keep up with the speedy winger and another chance went begging.
The game was wrapped up on 67 minutes a quickly taken corner found an unmarked Clair at the edge of the box , his shot evaded the defenders and it was game over.
United still battled on and another telling cross from Morris did find McCarthy and the big man bundled home on 77 minutes. City of Liverpool had Wylie to thank minutes later, Milne found space in the box and only a last ditch block by the former “Blue” kept the goal intact.
Milne did find the back of the net to reduce the arrears, a well drilled shot found the bottom corner on 90 minutes but it wasn’t enough.
United were well beaten on the day and it was former boss McNally who was smiling at the final whistle.
Skelmersdale United: Ashton, Herbert, Lees, Sheen, Mcloughlin, Gerrard, Gallagher, Morris, Milne, McCarthy, Prescott. Subs: Hamilton, Djalo, O’Brien. Unused: Devine, Grogan
City of Liverpool: McCall, Wylie, Hont, Hoilett, Hughes, Burke, McGrath, Simpson, Mitchley, Hazelhurst, Clair. Subs: Shaw, Allen, Strickland. Unused: Ellison, Steele