Firsts beaten by Bedians, Thirds lose, Fourths win

Mellor's home game with Bedians was switched to Didsbury because of waterlogging at Wood Lane and the side returned home empty handed. Mellor now slip to ninth in the Premiership still three places above their relegation threatened rivals. Manager Stu Cumpsty experimented by moving Mark Oldham into midfield and putting Dave Moss back as a cover player alongside Craig Fairfield at centre back. The move might have paid dividends in a different style of game. But with Mellor dominating the play and pushing forward Bedians adopted a counter-attacking strategy and their two speedy raiders often caught Mellor's back line slightly exposed.

Bedians took the lead on eight minutes when a buccaneering run saw a forward survive three attempted tackles to work a shooting position. Gav Thornley saved his first effort but with both players on the ground the Bedians man managed to force the ball over the line, with Thornley looking vainly for support from a defender.

An error three minutes later saw Bedians in again one on one but this time the forward lifted his shot over. Mellor began to get their passing game together and fashioned some good moves against opponents snapping tackles at every opportunity. On 22 minutes Danny Leibrick was released on the left and his cross bisected the six yard box. Mark Oldham retrieved the ball on the right and returned an equally dangerous cross but subsequent shots by Luke Jubb and Jonathan Hunt were blocked.

On 28 minutes Moss put a free kick too near the keeper, then Jubb got his head to Leibrick's cross but the ball looped up for an easy catch by the keeper. Jubb put Hunt in on 35 minutes but his low shot was deflected by the keeper for a corner (see picture 1).

 

 

Jonathan Hunt's shot is saved

 

Mellor were dominating possession but Bedians were dangerous on the break. On 37 minutes Bedians might have extended their lead but Scott Cassidy's tenacity averted danger. Gav Thornley made a important save on 40 minutes while up the other end Hunt and Oldham both had efforts well saved.

The second half began with Mellor again pressing. Another Hunt shot was deflected for a corner and from the kick Fairfield volleyed wide. On 55 minutes Mellor had three consecutive corners with Bedians scrambling each delivery away. Jubb who had worked hard without much reward now became more and more a potent threat. On 58 minutes he worked an excellent chance but his goalbound shot was deflected just wide for yet another corner.

Still Bedians threatened with the long ball and on 61 minutes Thornley saved the day again with a good block in a one on one situation. But a minute later he was powerless to prevent Bedians extending their lead when a misjudgement at the back saw a long ball drop invitingly for a Bedians forward to hammer home.

Liam Totterdell replaced Craig Frisby on 62 minutes and two minutes later Thornley made yet another excellent stop when faced by a Bedians attacker.

Hunt had a shot blocked and Mark Oldham almost slid Jubb in. On 73 minutes Terry Boon set up Dave Moss but his drive was well saved. Boon then cleared a Bedians' effort off his own goalline. But the action was mostly at Bedians' end and on 78 minutes Leibrick's volley was saved. A minute later Jubb fed Totterdell who should have scored but again his effort from 13 yards out was pushed away.

Jonathan Hunt finally gave Mellor hope, forcing the ball home from four yards after Luke Jubb's effort had been blocked. Mark Oldham then almost equalised, glancing a header on to a Boon shot but the ball was deflected by a Bedians' head when it might have found the net.

With five minutes left Carl Brindley replaced Jubb and Maciek Sobiegraj came on for Dave Whelan. Mellor continued to press but Bedians held on. Craig Fairfield was Mellor's Man of the Match.

 

Mellor pressure

Danny Leibrick's shot is saved

Jonathan Hunt turns the ball in to make it 1-2

 

The Seconds' game against Whalley Range fell victim to the weather. The Thirds lost 3-0 away at Burnage and the Fourths won 3-0 away at Heaton Mersey with goals from Sam Healey (2) and Ian Drew, who was Man of the Match.

 

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PIC 1 Craig Fairfield, Firsts Man of the Match

PIC 2 Sam Healey, two for the Fourths