Match Report: Springhead AFC vs Manchester Central

Manchester Central boosted their promotion hopes after narrowly beating fifth placed Springhead AFC 1-0 in the Manchester Football League Premier Division on Saturday.

The first action of the game came in the third minute of the game when Josh Frith curled a 20 yard effort just past the post.

Manchester Central continued to apply the pressure – Riche Makelele did well to dispossess the Springhead fullback and play the ball to Cory Knight, the striker teed up Josh Frith but his effort whistled just over the bar in the ninth minute.

Cory Knight forced a decent save from the Springhead keeper. It was almost third time lucky for Frith who tapped home the rebound but the linesman adjudged him to be offside.

Central continued to take the game by the scruff of the neck, Josh Frith was played through in the 35th minute and was denied by the keeper. Buba Sakiliba charged in for the rebound but his improvised header was cleared off the line.

Paul McGuire’s side finally broke the deadlock through 19-year-old Marcello Ahrin who toe-poked the ball home after a scramble in the box on the 38th minute.

Manchester Central came in at half time with a deserved 1-0 lead. However they needed to be more clinical in front of goal.

Springhead came out in the second half with a point to prove after their recent good form. The Oldham-based side’s pressure almost paid off when number seven powered a half volley against the bar from six yards out.

Manchester Central switched to a more counter attacking style to help weather the storm. Cory Knight’s driven left-footed shot whistled pass the right post in the 70th minute after a swift counter attack.

Central made two substitutions in the space of five minutes, Dan Burns replaced Josh Frith in the 70th minute. Riche Makelele made way for Mauro Mendes in the 75th minute as Central switched to a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Despite the Springhead pressure, the Central defence held firm and barely allowed the home side a shot on target in the closing stages.

The victory moved Manchester Central just two points behind Springhead with two games in hand. If Central win their two games in hand they could move all the way up to third place with 27 points.

 

 

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