Thursday, April 02, 2009

Wrong end in thriller

Source: Crosby Herald

Apr 2 2009 by Philip Kirkbride, Crosby Herald

Wrong end in thriller

THE scoreline would not have been to their liking but the occasion of Saturday afternoon’s match with FC United of Manchester will have everyone at Marine dreaming.

In front of 1146 fans, this UniBond Premier Division clash was atmospheric, enthralling and had the feel of a game with so much more a stake.

The Mariners would love to be able to attract the level of home support that celebrated Wayne McDermott’s spectacular volley to send Marine 2-1 ahead each week and would have much preferred the weekend’s match to have been a pivotal to both sides’ play-off chances.

However, the 3-2 loss signalled the Whites’ eighth straight league defeat and now sees them in 13th place - though relegation is highly unlikely, three points sooner rather than later will calm any lingering nerves.

Indeed the much needed win could have arrived against FC United following a stirring first-half attacking display from Alvin McDonald’s men that saw them rally after going behind in the 33rd minute.

Simon Carden pounced on hesitant defending in the home area to steal in and fire past Sean Lake for an unlikely lead.

Marine had made all the early progress with Karl O’Donnell, re-born as a right winger, the source of all that was good about the Mariners in the opening 45.

O’Donnell’s deep cross was almost turned in acrobatically by Joe Doyle at the back post before the former Vauxhall Motors man struck the cross bar with a dipping free-kick.

But, two minutes after conceding, Marine levelled when O’Donnell’s teasing low cross was bundled over the line by Peter Cumiskey and a minute later they stole the lead.

Full-back Wayne McDermott was played into the area before unleashing a vicious volley into the top corner.

Unfortunately the Mariners’ cheer was short lived as just before the break, Carl Lomax barged his way through the backline to steer the ball past Lake - Marine were incensed that the striker was not penalised for a pull back on McDermott.

The goal knocked the fight out of Marine and the second half belonged to the visitors who took control of the game.

Lomax was on hand at the back post just after he hour to prod home and make it 3-2.

Man of the match: Karl O’Donnell