Sabden 12 – 4 FC Bacup

Sabden FC 12 – 4 FC Bacup

Sabden racked up an impressive 12 goal haul to deliver what could be a vital dent to AFC Bacup`s title challenge. Whilst the much-fancied Bacup team showed quality in small patches, in truth, it was a demolition job from first minute to last.

5 minutes 1 – 0
Jonny Heap skinned the left back and cut a cross back from the byline for David Fallon to smash home from 8 yards

8 minutes 2 – 0
Paul Astin dropped deep on the left flank, won a throw, and spotted the darting run of Fallon who coasted through and delivered a sublime finish across the Bacup `keeper

12 minutes 2 – 1
Bacup`s only first-half attempt of note, resulting in a fine right wing cross and a smart finish

14 minutes 3 – 1
Youngster James Duerden belied his tender years by winning a challenge in midfield and hitting a defence-splitting pass which Astin raced onto and slid the ball home

24 minutes 4 – 1
Fallon returned the favour to Heap, who cut in from the right. The Bacup keeper got a hand to it, but the momentum of the ball was enough to carry it into the net, with Astin following it to the line to make sure

28 minutes 5 – 1
Not for the last time, Astin found himself one-on-one with the `keeper, following an exquisite pass from Adam Fuller. Astin rounded the keeper and was hauled to the ground. The referee in sympathy kept his red card pocketed, but it mattered not as Fallon netted as expected from the spot for his hat-trick!

51 minutes 5 – 2
There had to be a response from Bacup, and a left wing cross was nodded home unchallenged

53 minutes 6 – 2
Instant response required, and provided! Midfield maestro Fuller played one of his Pirlo-esque passes to Astin. The goalkeeper, who by now must have been sick of looking into the whites of Astin`s eyes, was unable to get near to a fine finish.

63 minutes 7 – 2
Impressive full-back Zac Musker won a crunching tackle high up the pitch before passing the ball inside to Fuller, who looked up before craftily guiding his 25 yard shot into the top of the net.

70 minutes 8 – 2
Young Duerden found himself in acres of space in the penalty area, and unselfishly squared the ball to Heap, who carefully worked an opening before slotting into the net

74 minutes 9 – 2
Within 2 minutes of coming on for the excellent Heap, Ricky Grayston was on hand to tap into an empty net, after a 25 yard Fallon thunderbolt was clawed out of the top corner by the never-say-die Bacup keeper, who was still battling manfully to keep the score down.

81 minutes 9 – 3
Several opportunities to clear the ball easily were spurned, and Sabden were punished as a looping header found the bottom corner

83 minutes 10 – 3
Instant impact man Grayston raced through to strike home his second goal in 9 minutes, with the Bacup defence totally and utterly disheartened.

85 minutes 10 – 4
Full-back David Kerrison was flattened by a crude challenge. The referee did not blow for a foul. The resulting through ball found the onrushing Bacup striker 3 yards offside. Still the ref did not blow! Obviously felt sorry for them ….

88 minutes 11 – 4
At the risk of becoming repetitive, Astin found himself one-on-one with the keeper following a long pass from deep from Sol Islam and was delighted as the ball nestled into the net for his richly deserved hat-trick!

89 minutes 12 – 4
Team captain, Ryan Graves, having put in a display of quality throughout the match, played a through ball which found Astin …………….. this is getting laborious ….. you know how it goes from here !!!!!! Astin`s fourth

Of the ones lacking a mention so far, Sabden goalkeeper Tom Diggins obviously didn`t have the busiest of afternoons, but he was brave when called upon and his handing was impeccable

Jason Bates played his right back role with the usual excellence and commitment. Central defence pairing Jack Birkett and Ryan Ellis formed a formidable partnership with Ellis in particular winning all of his aerial challenges.

Fallon (5, 8, 28), Astin (14, 53, 88, 89), Heap (24, 70), Fuller (63), Grayston (74, 83)

On a day when every player performed in this manner, it is difficult to single one out for special praise, However, I know none of his team mates will begrudge 17 year old JAMES DUERDEN winning what we hope will be the first of many MOM awards