Mellor 2 Chorltonians 1 in a friendly
Mellor's second friendly of the pre-season ended in a second win. But L&C Division One opponents Chorlts made the team work far harder than Cheshire League side Grappenhall. In the first period the sides were evenly matched and the visitors probably had the better chances. In the second period Mellor gradually imposed themselves, scored two good goals and should have added a third. But Chorlts rallied in the final 10 minutes and pulled a goal back to make it a tense finish.
The big surprise in Mellor's starting line-up was Paul Newman in central midfield. He had a point to prove and did so with an energetic display of tackling and spreading the ball accurately to the flanks. Neither keeper had a real save to make in the first 30 minutes as both sides tried to find their rhythm. Chorlts missed a great chance on 35 minutes, a forward firing wide with only Gav Thornley to beat. Then on 43 minutes a short corner resulted in a cross which beat everyone but Ben Beer stretching at the far post couldn't quite direct it into the net. A minute later Chorlts missed a second good opportunity with only the keeper to beat.
By now Barry Dalby had replaced Newman in midfield and Scott Cassidy was on for Craig Fairfield at right back. On 50 minutes Mike Sharpe had two chances to score in 20 seconds. His first shot was well saved and after the ball had ping-ponged in the area Sharpe's second effort flew wide. On 55 minutes neat footwork from Luke Jubb released Terry Boon on the right and his laser guided cross was turned home by Sharpe from eight yards. On 70 minutes Barry Dalby, now causing holes to appear in the Chorlts defence, surged from midfield down the inside right channel, lured a defender to him and cut the ball back to the penalty spot where Chris Porter in support stroked it wide of the prone keeper but also wide of the right hand post. Chorlts reprieve was short lived. A minute later Jubb was involved again cleverly releasing Carl Brindley to run on unmarked and chip the keeper imperiously for 2-0.
Chorlts were stung into life and put Mellor's stretched defence under pressure. Mellor often faced three-on-three or four-on-four situations but Chorlts couldn't find the killer pass. Eventually they struck when a Mellor attack broke down and a long straight ball found a visiting forward in acres of space and he beat Thornley comfortably. Terry Wilson, on as a sub, hit the side netting with five minutes left. There was still one final chance for Chorlts to level but the scorer this time missed the target. There were good performances all round, especially from Dalby, Palmer, cassidy, Jubb and Cameron Manning at left back.
Mellor's First Team squad againsr Chorlts
Ben Beer about to head over
Chris Porter slides the ball wide from Barry Dalby's cut back
Carl Brindley executes a perfect chip to put Mellor 2-0 up