AFC Didsbury 8 - 1 River Plate Reds
AFC Didsbury: Hargreaves, Mackie (Jaffray), Rogers (Eaves), Battersby (C), Bermingham, Wallace, Creasey, Stiff, MacHugh, Harrison (Quaye), Corbett.
Goals: Harrison, Corbett (3), Wallace (2), Creasey (2)
Assists: MacHugh (3), Corbett, Rogers, Harrison, Stiff
Man of the Match: Creasey
Didsbury put River Plate Reds to the sword in impressive victory
Three goals in the space of 15 minutes in the first half from Didsbury saw them cruise to an easy victory and consolidate their lead at the top of the MASFL Division 1.
Didsbury dominated from the outset and Matt Harrison opened the scoring after five minutes with a powerful low strike. On the hour mark Mike Corbett was brought down inside the area and converted the rebound from his weak spot kick. Jack Wallace opened his account for the season with the third and Neil Creasey rifled a contender for goal of the season from outside the box to put Didsbury up 4-0 at the break. In truth it should have been more but for some heroic saves from the River Plate Reds’ goalkeeper.
Didsbury were cruising to an easy victory and it was much of the same in the second half, with an intricate passing move slicing open the opposition defence, for Corbett to curl a brilliant strike into the top right corner. Creasey added to his tally with the sixth and Wallace popped up in the box to claim his second of the game. A raft of substitutions broke the game’s tempo up somewhat and Hargreaves mistimed a punch from a corner and the ball looped in off the back of Creasey’s head to gift River Plate Reds a consolation with minutes to go. However it wasn’t the last act of the game when Corbett was set through on goal and he made no mistakes to seal his hat-trick.
Words by David Hargreaves
AFC Didsbury 2 - 2 MUSC
(AET: AFCD progress to the next round after penalties)
AFC Didsbury: Hargreaves, Mackie, Rogers, Battersby (C), Jaffray, Robins, Creasey, Stiff, McDonald (Wallace), Harrison (Quaye), MacHugh (Trecarichi).
Goals: MacHugh, Harrison
Assists: Robins, Stiff
Man of the Match: Battersby
Classy Didsbury show strong spirit in controversial Cup Tie
Perfect conditions at Turn Moss this Sunday as AFC Didsbury embarked on their cup campaign against Premiership side MUSC. Didsbury were not fazed by the challenge and dominated the early exchanges and their pressure was rewarded when Kieran MacHugh picked up a loose ball on the edge of the box and drove a shot in-off the post to give Didsbury the lead.
Didsbury were relatively untroubled throughout the first half due to having an extra man for the first half hour but a string of bad challenges from both sides culminated in a booking for Colin McDonald and scrappy interchanges up until the break.
The second half was a far more even affair with MUSC using their physical advantage to gain a foothold in the match but the equaliser came from a bizarre incident. Mike Stiff left the field with a blood injury and a drop ball was intended to be uncontested with MUSC giving back possession to Didsbury goalkeeper Hargreaves. However, the MUSC centre forward disgraced himself with a display of unsportsmanlike behaviour when he picked up the ball and proceeded to round the goalkeeper and slot home. Protests were waved away and the equalising goal stood.
Didsbury kept their cool and a free-kick from Mike Stiff was saved well but the loose ball dropped to Matt Harrison who restored the lead. MUSC pulled level once more when a long ball wasn’t dealt with and slotted home making it 2-2.
The game went into extra-time and with both teams flagging there was little chances for either side and it headed to penalties. AFC Didsbury showed commendable character when they shook the hands of the opposition players, after such a controversial battle that lasted over 120 minutes. Justice was served in the end and Didsbury now look forward to the next round.
Words by David Hargreaves
Gold Cup 1 - 1 AFC Didsbury
AFC Didsbury: Hargreaves, Musson (C) (Bermingham), Rogers, Johnson (Mackie), Jaffray, Robins, Creasey, Stiff, McDonald, Harrison, MacHugh.
Man of the Match: Rogers
Honours even as Didsbury draw for the first time this season in top of the table clash.
Blustery conditions greeted AFC Didsbury away at Hough End for their first game in over a month due to poor weather over the winter period. With both teams evenly matched in the opening exchanges there were little chances of note with rangy strikes from Mike Stiff and Wayne Rogers all Didsbury could muster in a first half dominated by the two midfields.
Gold Cup FC grew into the half as it progressed and two long cross-field balls provided chances but Hargreaves was rarely tested and the scores remained locked at 0-0.
The game opened up in the second half with both teams eyeing the win and an extended period of pressure early on from Didsbury was forcing Gold Cup back into their half. A series of corners whipped in by Kieran MacHugh causing trouble for the Gold Cup goalkeeper who was keeping his team in the game.
The breakthrough was coming and it came from an unlikely source when Didsbury left-back Ben Jaffray broke free down the left wing, played in by Colin McDonald and placed a curling low right-footed shot for his first goal for Didsbury and a vital lead.
Didsbury were left with twenty minutes to hang on and expectedly Gold Cup threw everything at them to try and claim the equaliser. A scramble in the box from a long throw-in resulted in Hargreaves saving low with his feet and smothering the follow-up. However Didsbury were to be denied the win when with five minutes remaining a throw-in was flicked on and converted at the back post to level.
Kieran MacHugh nearly snatched a late winner but was denied by a fine save and a draw was a fair reflection on the fine efforts from both teams.
Words by David Hargreaves
MATCH POSTPONED DUE TO POOR WEATHER CONDITIONS