Stonnall Phoenix 2:5 Brownhills Community Colts
After a good start by Stonnall Phoenix, Brownhills were the stronger in the second half to claim victory.
Right from kick off Phoenix played the ball forward and gained a corner. Liam played it in to the back post and a mix up saw the ball tuck in to the net for a first minute lead. Buoyed by the perfect start, the lads continued to press and play good passing football and in the sixth minute doubled the lead after Dillan had won the ball in defence and after a good exchange of passes between Harry and Nathan, the ball was fed to Ennis in midfield who unleashed a right footed shot beating the keeper to his left for 2:0.
In the 12th minute, Brownhills got back in the game at 2:1 and this gave them confidence in their attacking play. The home side, however, were still creating chances and after good hold up play by Ben, he turned a defender and shot from 20 yards, The ball bounced squarely off the bar and was scrambled to safety.
Then, in the last minute of the half, the away side equalised which proved to be the turning point in the game. 2:2 at half time.
Brownhills were increasingly on top in the second half and took the lead after 50 minutes. The game had been evenly balanced up to that point, but as the visitors got stronger and were able to rest players by bring on substitutes, Phoenix had no such luxury. Indeed, they played the whole game with one man short.
This was instrumental as the game reached the latter stages. The lads tired going uphill and were constantly defending. Brownhills scored twice more for a 2:5 victory but in between the goals, keeper Alfie produced save after save despite a foot injury. At the other end, Ennis hit the bar with a free kick and then after good build up play involving Joe and Fozz, firstly Nathan and then Ben both rattled the crossbar again.
The last pre-season friendly ended in defeat but many positives can be taken from the game and with a full squad, we are looking forward to the first game next week.
Report by Pete H.
Bruce has given Man of the Match to Alfie. The newly appointed Vice Captain commanded his penalty area, knowing when to intercept and when to stay back. He communicated well with the defence and made several stunning saves. Well done Alfie.