Salford City 2
FC United 3
By Tony Howard
IT was billed as the big re-match after the famous night at the Willows in October but it fell a bit flat for Salford City as they went down 3-2 to an impressive FC United in the FA Vase.
City manager Garry Fellows’ pre-match predictions that the Ammies would beat United and go on to lift the famous trophy proved as empty as the Willows as the Salford public failed to back their side as they had done in the previous game.
A noon kick-off, due to a pre-booked function, didn’t help matters and the biting cold would also have put many off.
However, City still did those who bothered to turn up proud with a battling display but unfortunately they couldn’t match the heroics of the previous game which saw Salford win with two last minute goals.
That being said, it looked like another fairy tale was unravelling after just two minutes when Tommy Turner lashed home at the near post to give the tangerines an early lead.
It did not last though as FC United came back at them and red goal machine Stuart Rudd missed from all of three yards after good work from Rhodri Giggs. But the big number nine made no mistake moments later when he was played in by Nicky Platt to slot past ex-FC shot stopper Barrie George for 1-1.
United then took the lead when Simon Carden was played in to go one-on-one with George and he made no mistake with an expertly taken lob to warm red cockles.
City were restricted to long range efforts and resorted to pumping the ball forward more in hope than anything else and when FC skipper Dave Chadwick made it 3-1 in the second half the Ammies were out of it.
True to their never-say-die spirit, Salford battled back though and kept passing the ball on a difficult surface. Substitute David Burrows scored a deflected goal in injury time to set up a grandstand finish but it wasn’t to have the dream ending this time.
United made no mistakes at the death as they marched into the third round where they will face Quorn FC from Loughborough.
Fellows refused to be down-hearted after the game.
He said: "You’ve got to give FC credit because they responded well to our goal. But we defended badly and our keeper was very slow off his line for their equaliser.
"Then our full back played their lad on for the second. We came in at half-time and had a chat but it was the same again – bad defending on a corner for their third. John Robinson was two yards off Chadwick and he scored. Other than that I thought we kept the ball better than FC. The commitment was there but it was their day.
"Salford have got to take a lot of credit. We’re all local lads and to take FC United to 3-2 is a decent result. We haven’t got mega money and a lot of the lads play for nearly nothing but if you look at the video of that game there was only one team wanting to play football and that was Salford City.
"We’ll get back on it for Trafford on Saturday and we’re looking at progressing in the league and getting promotion if possible."
City visit Trafford on Saturday, November 25, kick-off 3pm. They then play Abbey Hey at home in another league game on Tuesday, November 28, kick-off 7.45pm.
Meanwhile, a Richard Dunne goal gave City’s youth team a 1-0 Alliance Cup win against Marine.
First published by the Salford Advertiser