In our first Quarter Final of the season the lads started brightly especially in the opposition half and it was no surprise that our player of the season to date , Oisin , put us in front from a quality free kick from three yards outside the box which left the keeper floundering with the net rippling from his effort .
Then some Rowie magic left all in his wake but no options to pass to from a static midfield who should be busting a gut to get in the box every time he has the ball .
A long range Marcus effort added to our superiority on chances .
That said some cracks were starting to show especially when their midfield broke into forward runs who often ran into danger areas unmarked despite us having superiority in numbers which shows a lack of personal responsibility and talking which is something we must work on .
It was from one of these runs that a Stalybridge player got in between two of our players from a long ball but it must be said he took it really well on the chest to put it in his stride and to finish with aplomb . Mark also made a super save from a similar situation .
At the other end Morgan who is having his best spell in a while put in Lewis who almost put in Marcus on the edge of the six yard box .
Then our first moment of hesitancy in the tackle cost us when Rob brought down a Stalybridge forward for a sure fire penalty which they finished really well to make it 2-1 at half time .
At half time we asked the lads to pick up the runners from midfield and to take individual responsibility to pick up a blue shirt but in all honesty in the first half only three or four players were playing at the level required to win a quarter final with many nowhere near their best after the holidays .
The second half continued where we left off with hesitancy in the tackle from Josh and Joe H costing us dear as the opposition took full advantage to increase the lead to 4-1 as we gave it to Stalybridge on a plate . Our inability to tackle and take a hit is costing us dear which is why we have to play with a 4-2-3-1 formation when ideally we would want to play a 4-1-4-1 or 4-1-3-2 formation . The boys really do need to get stuck in but nice lads they are .
Quite rightly Unsworth got a consolation as Oisin put in a fine ball for Morgan to finish nicely and indeed the latter should have finished an easier chance rather than showboating and trying to lob the keeper instead of doing the simple thing in passing it into the net to give the Reds a chance of a draw they did not really deserve as Stalybridge who seem to be our bogey team were definitely fitter and more willing to make the extra effort required to win big games .