Home league match played on 08 April 2015.
Kicked off at 6:30 PM

TS UNITS 1 v 5 Grange Athletic

The UNITS took on Grange in another midweek fiasco as we mustered 14 with Si Hollick stepping in late to complete the three subs as we lined up

Mozza, Tonka, Taylor, Gilo, Clarkey, Chinner, Coco, Baker, Ryan, Lewis & Trigger - Subs were Rob, Si & Ben

Grange as we know are unbeaten and champions elect as we faced a tough evenings work as they had a strong looking side out

The UNITS set up initially to be solid and to try and frustrate the visitors whilst creating opportunites on the counter, we were defending well early doors but playing 5 yards too deep which just invited Grange pressure as the visitors took early control

The only crumb of comfort for the UNITS were Grange were not getting in behind us and 15 in we had weathered a storm and Mozza bar a couple of long range efforts had been fairly untroubled

Frustratingly we had struggled to create anything of note yet on 17 minutes we pressed the Grange back line into a mistake and Lewis picked up the ball 25 yards out before hitting a great dipping shot which the Grange keeper tipped over at full stretch when from our first chance we were inches away from taking the lead

Back came Grange and Pap up top for the visitors should have done better when he wanted a touch on the back stick before Chinner closed down and Mozza collected the ball, then from one great cross their midfielder ran onto the ball and could only poke the ball straight at Mozza as we held on as Grange crancked up the pressure

On 25 minutes our defensive effort so far was undone when Grange kept the ball outside our box before the ball was fed to their striker and Chinner was guilty of standing off their player as he hit an 18 yard strike into the top corner giving Mozza no chance as we fell behind

Credit to the UNITS we rolled up our sleeves and got back into the game, Trigger found himself through yet his touch was horrendous and the Grange player managed to clear when Trigger should have at least tested the keeper, Grange then missed a sitter of their own as their striker poked wide from 8 yards when he also should have tested the keeper as we stayed in the game

40 minutes on the clock and we were so close to getting level, Trigger got away wide in the box, he scuffed his shot but put the ball into the danger zone, Grange could clear only as far as Ryan who hit a 15 yard shot destined for the corner before Clarke for Grange stuck out a boot and deflected the ball inches wide of the goal as we came so close to leveling up, then right on half time a Coco free kick was inches away from Tonka getting an imprortant touch as their keeper claimed the ball well under pressure as the UNITS came in 1-0 down and still in the game

HT UNITS 0 v 1 Grange Athletic

The lads had workded tirelessly in the first half and Cuzer's message was to stay competitive and not to make it easy for Grange and hope we get the opportunities to get back on level terms

We started the 2nd half better and Lewis had a great opportunity 20 yards out but rushed his shot which bobbled to the keeper when he should have done better then Trigger from wide shot low which again their keeper held comfortably

55 in and Grange had created little but then missed two sitters in quick succesison to really let the UNITS off the hook as they poked wide twice from inside the 18 yard box with the goal gaping as we got lucky

On the hour mark Ben replaced Chinner & Lewis had picked up a knock and was replaced by Rob as Cuzer shuffled the shape to a more attacking formation to try and get back into the game

Initially we got more of the ball and Coco was finding space, one good run resulted in him shooting well wide when well placed and options ahead of him as we pushed hard to get level

65 minutes on the clock however and we totally shot ourselves in the foot and allowed Grange to get the all important 2nd goal, Gilo did so wel to repell a Grange attack but was then criminally guilty of switching off as a quick throw took him out the game leaving Taylor isolated two on one and a side as slick as Grange this time made no mistake releasing the striker who had all the time in the world to lift the ball over Mozza and into the empty net

On 70 minutes and from a dubiously given free kick on the edge of the box the initial free kick was well saved by Mozza but no UNIT player followed in and the Grange wide played did to poke home from close range as we stated to tire as the visitors wrapped up the points with a 3-0 lead

Si then replaced Baker in a like for like swap

Grange themselves introduced fresh legs and as we tired they really exploited us on the break with pace and started to create at will, one sub showed great technique to cushion a volley against the cross bar when he deserved better however it was a short restbite for the UNITS as Grange got their 4th from the edge of the box as the UNITS were guilty of a couple of soft challenges and their striker got clear and finished past Mozza

We did get a goal back on 80 minutes and it was a fine team goal, good play involving Ben, Coco & Rob Bell resulted in Clarkey putting in a fine 30 yard cross field ball on to the on-rushing Trigger who volleyed past the keeper from 10 yards out on the angle to make it 1-4

Deep into injury time Grange added a harsh fifth when Gilo went to ground too easily and their striker raced away from him before rounding Mozza and poking home into the empty net as in the end Grange ran out comfortable and deserved winners

We put a lot of work in tonight and competed really well for 70 minutes but ultimately Grange are a fine side with some excellent individuals and in the end their quality told and we could have no complaints coming out 2nd best to the side which will run away with the league & deservedly so

Man of the match was a close one between Paul Taylor & Ryan Smith but Ryan again just nicked it with an all action display in the middle of the park

The UNITS complete their league programme this coming Sunday with a local derby against Harriers Trust and hopefully a much improved performance from our no-show at their place earlier in the season

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