For the first time in 504 days the Peninsula Stadium opened its gates to welcome fans back, with Gary Bowyer’s men putting on a show by defeating Championship opposition Derby County 2-1.
Josh Morris opened the scoring for the Ammies on the 20-minute mark with a potent left-footed penalty smashed down the middle. Tylor Golden, who proved to be a constant thorn in the side for the Rams, was taken down in the area by Ravel Morrison, leaving Salford’s new number 11 to convert the spot kick with style to open his account for the club.
Early in the second half Salford doubled their lead. Golden again threatening down the right-hand side with a lofted cross finding the head of Tom Elliott whose cushioned header nestled into the bottom right corner. The big man arrived late into the box leaving the Derby keeper rooted to the spot and the reaction from the Salford crowd was exactly what we’ve missed over the last year.
10 minutes from time the visitors clawed a goal back through a Jordan Turnbull own goal. A low cross from left back Craig Forsyth was dummied by Ravel Morrison deceiving the Salford back line and forcing the Salford centre half to turn the ball into his own net.
Wayne Rooney’s Rams couldn’t find an equaliser in the final ten minutes leaving Salford with the win and a boosted level of confidence to take into the new campaign.
It was the Gaffer’ss first time welcoming the fans to the ground and he was delighted with the atmosphere at the Peninsula.
“It was really good, I’m so pleased so many of them came in on a beautiful day watching a really good game of football”
“We knew it was going to be a difficult game against a well organised team, you can tell from the way they play they have a real identity, so it was a great test for us to work on the things we’ve tried in training.”
Bowyer will be looking for more of the same from the final two games of pre-season before our League Two opener at home to Leyton Orient.