S a l f o r d
C i t y
F o o t b a l l
C l u b

Salford City football Club

View Team Sheet

Team Sheet

Salford City FC
1
Vaclav Hladky
3
Ibou Touray
4
Jason Lowe
6
Tom Clarke (c)

Eastham 54'

10
Ash Hunter
12
Di'Shon Bernard
16
Jordan Turnbull
17
Richie Towell
1 goals for Richie Towell

James 90+1'

24
Robbie Gotts
1 goals for Robbie Gotts
25
Paul Coutts
40
Ian Henderson
2 goals for Ian Henderson 2 goals for Ian Henderson

Thomas-Asante 89'

Cambridge United
25
Callum Burton
2
Kyle Knoyle
5
Greg Taylor (c)
6
Declan Drysdale
7
Luke Hannant
10
Paul Mullin
1 goals for Paul Mullin
11
Harrison Dunk

Iredale 56'

15
Jubril Okedina

Alese 64'

18
Shilow Tracey

Ironside 64'

19
Adam May
26
Harvey Knibbs
Substitutes
31
Hayden Evans
2
Tom James
5
Ash Eastham
15
Luke Burgess
18
Oscar Threlkeld
19
James Wilson
37
Brandon Thomas-Asante
Substitutes
13
Kai McKenzie-Lyle
3
Jack Iredale
8
Liam O'Neil
16
Ajibola Alese
17
Leon Davies
20
Joe Ironside
27
Ben Worman
Managers
Manager - Richie Wellens
Managers
Head Coach - Mark Bonner
Match Officals
Referee - Benjamin Speedie
Assistant Referee - Abbas Khan
Assistant Referee - Paul Stonier
Fourth Official - Samuel Barrott

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Match
Report

It may have been an icy evening at the Peninsula Stadium, yet Salford City produced a scintillating performance that warmed Ammie hearts everywhere. League leaders Cambridge United had no answer to a powerful first-half showing from Richie Wellens’ side and a commanding 3-0 lead had been established by the interval. The U’s did their best to find a way back into the game, but Salford were in no mood to relinquish their grip, and in the end bagged 3 richly deserved points.

There were three changes from side that started the defeat at Oldham 10 days ago. With the Ammies adopting a 3-4-2-1 formation, in came Di’Shon Bernard, Jason Lowe & Ash Hunter with Tom James, Ash Eastham & Oscar Threlkeld missing out.

Despite the kick-off being brought forward to 5:30pm temperatures were hovering around zero when the match got underway. Straight away it was clear to see that the home side meant business – the energy and determination that would underpin this result were clear right from the start.

The visitors had some defending to do early on, yet the evening’s first decent effort on goal went to them. Luke Hannant had a go from a free-kick, 20 yards out and centrally positioned, and was unfortunate to see his chipped effort drop narrowly outside Václav Hladký’s right-hand post.

Salford were pressing continuously and on 10 minutes Richie Towell’s curling delivery from the right dropped beyond the far post, with Ian Henderson not quite able to turn the ball back inside.

Hannant was at it again for Cambridge soon after that, collecting a square ball from Shilow Tracey on the left. The cross that followed was dangerous, with the ball skidding off a Salford head before dropping inches wide of the far upright.

The best couple of chances during the opening exchanges had gone to the U’s, but despite that Salford were beginning to look impressively powerful. There was plenty of good football from the hosts and in the 14th minute Ash Hunter’s forward pass from deep picked out Robbie Gotts on halfway. A pass to the right found Towell who fed the overlapping Hunter. A whipped cross was headed behind by a defender at the far post and
Paul Coutts took the corner. A curling right-footed delivery from the left almost caught out Cambridge keeper Callum Burton who was forced to punch clear from underneath the bar.

The Ammies were clicking into top gear and a great flicked touch from Towell sent Hunter racing away on the right flank. A square ball inside gave Gotts the opportunity to burst into the box, only for the Leeds loanee to lose his footing before he could get a shot in.

The pressure was building, and it was no real surprise when Salford went ahead in the 19th minute. The goal came from a Cambridge throw-in, from the left and inside their own half. Defender Jubril Okedina collected possession inside the area, then elected to carry possession out despite being closed down by HENDERSON. The Salford striker spied his chance, nicked the ball away from Okedina before turning to drill a low 16-yard effort across Burton and inside his left-hand post.

Straight from the restart Salford won possession and Hunter’s cross from right of centre flicked off a Cambridge head. The ball dropped for Henderson at the far post, but his attempt to poke home from close range was foiled by a blocking Burton save.

Cambridge were struggling to keep up with the home side’s all-action display and midway through the first half Hunter won possession on the right. A low ball inside found Towell only for the midfielder’s 22-yarder to clear the ball by some distance.

Salford’s second goal came 12 minutes before half time, at the end of a rapid counter-attack. Henderson did well to get ahead of Okedina wide on the left before working possession through for TOWELL to hit a 22-yard half-volley that gave Burton no chance at all.

A bad first half turned even worse for the U’s 4 minutes before the interval and Henderson was once again the provider. Towell closed down Cambridge keeper Burton whose hurried clearance fell to Gotts, outside the area and on the left. The Leeds loanee slipped a pass inside for Henderson whose diagonal return pass picked out GOTTS run into the left-hand side of the box. Odekina couldn't get close enough to get in a challenge and the low 10-yard finish from an angle was perfectly placed inside the far post.

Cambridge looked to find a response before the break, with Paul Mullin & Harvey Knibbs both spurning decent opportunities to prune what looked like a decisive Salford lead.

HALF-TIME: SALFORD CITY 3 CAMBRIDGE UNITED 0

A great first half for the Ammies and Cambridge were in urgent need of a goal. It could have arrived in the 49th minute after Harrison Dunk’s cross from the left found its way through to Adam May. There was a real sight of goal but May couldn’t make the most of it, skewing a right of centre 15-yarder wide of the far post.

That would be Dunk’s final contribution as a clash of heads with Salford skipper Tom Clarke soon afterwards left both players requiring treatment. Neither could continue, with Jack Iredale coming on for Dunk and Eastham replacing Clarke in the Ammies’ 3-man defence.

Salford were still seeing a lot of the ball, but with that 3-goal lead behind them they were understandably keen to hold onto the advantage. In the 67th minute Gotts tried a looping effort from distance and the stretching Burton did well to tip that one over the crossbar.

Former Rochdale stalwart Henderson had put in a tremendous shift during the evening and some typically crafty play secured his 2nd goal of the game. Towell's surging run on the right was finished off by a back-heel that was picked up by Hunter on the angle of the box. A hard, low delivery into the 6-yard box surprised everyone except HENDERSON who popped up a couple of yards out to turn the ball past Burton.

Even so, the league leaders found a quick response this time. Hannant’s cross from the left flicked off Eastham's head before dropping for MULLIN, on the edge of the 6-yard box and towards the far post. An expert bit of control and first time low left-foot finish restored some pride and recorded a 20th goal of the season for the former Tranmere frontman.

The faintest glimmer of hope for Cambridge, but that would be as good as their evening got. With 12 minutes left the Ammies could have restored their 4-goal lead but Henderson couldn’t quite wriggle through after collecting a neat touch from Gotts.

That would be about that, and Salford City could look back on a polished performance that keeps them hot on the heels of the divisional front-runners.

FULL-TIME: SALFORD CITY 4 CAMBRIDGE UNITED 1

It’s not rocket science – goals change football matches and on this occasion Salford’s finishing was clinical. What a contrast from the previous game, at Boundary Park, where a wholly dominant first-half performance had been rewarded by just a single strike.

This evening territorial domination – built on a bedrock of tireless pressing and some very good football – was converted into nicely taken goals. This was the type of performance that has been bubbling under the surface for a few weeks now, and the fact that it emerged against the league leaders renders it all the more impressive.

Hugely encouraging stuff, and with a brutal schedule of games to come, the challenge is to maintain this level of performance. The ability is there, the attitude is there and the desire is certainly there – strap yourselves in for another Ammie promotion push…

https://salfordcityfc.co.uk