Bacup Borough Football Club
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Match Report: Runcorn Town v Bacup Borough

Macron Challenge Cup Second Round.

Runcorn Town 3- Bacup Borough 2.


Bacup Borough travelled to Premier League Leaders Runcorn Town in the Macron Challenge Cup and almost produced a shock in an highly entertaining game, Manager Brent Peters side were crippled with injuries, also missing was the recently departed Darcy O’Connor to whom has moved on following his last appearance sending off, the second of the season, despite limited options Bacup produced their best away performance of the season against high flying Town.

It was no surprise in the opening minutes Runcorn were forcing Borough back fresh off their impressive mid-week 6-2 victory over West Didsbury, but once the game settled Bacup were more than a match for the Cheshire high flyers and with this did shock the home support by taking a fifteenth minute lead, this came from Adrian Bellamy making a good run down the Bacup right which forced a corner, the ball was

Ryan Alessandra scored Bacup Borough's opener

Ryan Alessandra scored Bacup Borough’s opener.

delivered from which the ball was headed down and the alert Ryan Alessandra reacted first to smash the ball into the net, Bacup now had something to hang onto, not that they went onto the defensive, just the opposite, they competed for every ball, certainly giving Town as much as they were giving Bacup.

With thirty five minutes on the clock Borough had to withstand some increased pressure with Aaron Ashley’s goal coming under siege, but Ashley showed the importance of having a competent keeper in goal has he was a match for the efforts Town hit him with once in behind the Bacup rear guard, it looked very much like Bacup would get to the half time break with their slender Ryan Alessandra goal in check but on forty three minutes the Runcorn striker with the ball at his feet but back to goal whilst being tightly marshalled by Stuart Craig, this prompted the striker to protect the ball but with this action was taking the big striker and ball further away from the Bacup goal, defender Craig saw enough of the ball to suggest he could win the ball but all this did was to concede a free kick in favour of the home side, it was from this free kick that produced the home sides equaliser with a long high ball in which was headed back over Aaron Ashley into the net, if this was a setback, one minute later the home side got themselves in front, once again it was a wrong decision from the Bacup defender by putting the ball back to his co defender Luke Podmore, this prompted an high press which forced a Runcorn Town corner, from which was headed into the roof of the net, to be 2-1 down after being in the lead for so long was a bitter pill to swallow but credit to Bacup, despite this setback before half time, the Valley side came out after the break still in a determined positive mood, this mood could easily have been different at the start of the half when their big striker found himself unmarked on the left of the box, with his marker at the right of the box, the ball was switched to the unmarked striker to whom got a wicked shot off which came back of the Bacup post to safety, Bacup then made a change bringing on the lively Ashley Leather replacing the injured Aftjoms Butorims.

The next chance did come Bacup’s way when Jamie Higgins caught the Town keeper off his line from which he chipped the stranded keeper but the bar prevented Bacup getting back on level terms, this was certainly a warning to Town and was no surprise when Bacup’s Johnathan

Johnathon Thompson scored a terrific equaliser to take the game to 2-2.

Johnathon Thompson scored a terrific equaliser to take the game to 2-2.

Thompson had come off his marker to the left, this movement forced Bacup Borough’s midfield player to put the ball in behind, into the path of Thompson, without breaking his stride he saw the keeper coming from which he played a perfectly excellent shaped ball past their keeper to get his side deservedly back on level terms 2-2.

With the clock ticking and extra time looming the next goal was going to be the winner, this really should have been Bacup when Michael Gervin did well, determined to come away with the ball against two Town players, once he had seen some day light, he turned out right to release Ashley Leather, Leather was quick and bright taking on the full back before driving down the bye line and with this drilling the ball across the face of goal, Leather’s strike partner Anthony Hall drove in smashing the shot inches wide of the post, such was the fine margins in this game, from this Runcorn broke down our left, from which the full back put what initially seemed a no danger ball into the Bacup area, the Runcorn striker seemed to stick a leg out from which the ball did strike the gaping leg to divert away from Aaron Ashley into the far corner of the net, this was a real cruel blow to Bacup given the time on the clock, a further Bacup substitute followed with introduction of Nathan Emery replacing Ryan Alessandra, was there still time for Bacup to get themselves another equaliser? The way Bacup responded, yes there was time, from this substitution, Adrian Bellamy was pushed from centre back forward to add another striker into the attack

Runcorn Town were now hanging on as Bacup produced several corners in succession, how their first corner did not end up in the net just proved luck was not with them as the Runcorn defender sliced his clearance towards his own goal from which went over the top not before the ball did strike the Town cross bar forcing another corner, it was from this corner that Adrian Bellamy did tower above his marker to head the ball goal bound only to once again witness the cross bar saving the day for Runcorn.

The Referee who had an excellent game brought proceedings to an end, whilst Bacup will be disappointed not to be going through, the Valley team can be proud of their gallant efforts which was acknowledged by the Runcorn Town faithful to whom clapped every player off the pitch.

Final score Runcorn Town 3- Bacup Borough 2.

Team.   Aaron Ashley, Luke Podmore, Adrian Bellamy, Stuart Craig, Ryan Alessandra, James Constantine, Jamie Higgins, Michael Gervin, Artjoms Butorins, Johnathan Thompson, Anthony Hall. Subs Used Ashley Leather, Nathan Emery.