Park United prove their point to top the table
PARK United made it back-to-back Bolton, Bury and District Junior Football League titles after coming from behind to pick up a point against Brandlesholme Reds.
Both teams set about the early stages playing slick passing football on a superb surface with an eagerness to move the ball quickly.
Marcus Jackson and Louis Summerfield both had early chances for Park with powerful strikes well saved by the visitor’s keeper, Daniel Fielding caused problems with his marauding runs down the left wing.
The normally free-scoring Park, who had lead the league table from the first week of the season, looked nervy as the game progressed and Brandlesholme, obviously hadn’t read the script when Alfie Naylor ran onto a lofted through ball and lobbed the keeper to make it 1-0 to the visitors.
The home crowd was stunned into silence as the Brandlesholme players celebrated going in front and they could have added a second a minute later as Naylor again found himself one-on-one with keeper Ethan Liddle, who saved well at the forward’s feet.
The midfield trio of Robert Seddon, Jack Winrow and Jack Banks did their utmost to rally the Park troops and a mazy run from the impressive Christian Ackroyd, who was a constant threat to the Brandlesholme defence, ended with a slide-rule pass to Toby Ellis whose shot went inches over the bar.
In the second half, it was United who had the majority of the possession and Sam Cartwright, whose set pieces were a causing havoc in the visitors’ penalty area, combined well with Lewis Haslam to send Ackroyd away down the left wing.
He cut inside, leaving three defenders behind, fired an unstoppable shot into the visitor’s goal and spark the celebrations from the home players and supporters.
This seemed to give the home team a renewed energy and the defence of Ella Smith and Dylan Lawson alongside James Pilkington were outstanding making timely interceptions and keeping the visitor’s chances to a minimum.
As the game drew to a close Park were in the ascendancy, encouraged by ever-supportive coaches, parents and fans.
The final whistle was greeted with joyous scenes as Park United celebrated the title making it two promotions in successive campaigns to round off a special anniversary season for the club.
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