United 2 Oldham 1: Reds make it 6 from 6 in the MSC
Posted by nickogs20 on October 14, 2008
|Manchester United Reserves||2-1||Oldham Athletic Reserves|
|James 13||–||Alessandra 3|
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reserve side put themselves in prime position to qualify for another Manchester Senior Cup Final with a hard-fought win against Oldham’s second string at a rain-lashed Marstons Arena this evening. Goals from Matty James and Sam Hewson, the latter an absolute screamer, earned the Reds all three points after the visitors had briefly threatened a shock by taking the lead in the first five minutes.
With numerous United players away on international duty or recovering from knocks, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer once again elevated players from the Academy side to bolster the reserve squad. So in came Oliver Gill, Scott Wootton, Matty James and Cameron Stewart, while Oliver Norwood and Kenny Strickland were named as subs. There was also a welcome return to action for Ben Foster, after injuring his ankle against Blackburn Rovers just under a month ago.
Finally, lining up for Oldham Athletic at right back was Kieran Lee, an ex-Red who joined the Latics last season. Lee had been out with groin and hamstring injuries all season and this was his comeback match.
In the opening few minutes both teams were coming to terms with the slippery conditions and Oldham took an early lead when the ball came into the area and looked as though it took a deflection and bobbled past a surprised Foster. It could hardly have been a worse start for the Reds but we soon got into our stride and put some passes together. Hewson, James and Cleverley looked good in central midfield while Derbyshire featured on the left and Stewart on the right. It was down the right hand side that United equalised on 13 minutes when a good passage of play led to Matthew James striking a beauty past the keeper from just on the edge of the box. Oldham had their moments but didn’t really test Foster as Wootton and Gray in the centre of defence held firm.
Then on 28 minutes, Sam Hewson struck an absolute peach of goal from more than 35 yards that screamed past the keeper! It was a cracker and in typical fashion MUTV were not there to capture it live. Let’s hope we see some highlights because it has goal of the month/season written all over it!
United continued to keep possession throughout the first half without really testing the Oldham keeper.
Half-time: Manchester United 2 Oldham Athletic 1
The second half saw United make an immediate substitution with Eikrem coming on to replace Jimmy Derbyshire who had a quiet first half. The Reds took control and began to dominate midfield with James and Hewson excelling. It was good to see Sam Hewson back in good form and he had a great game. Cameron Stewart also caught the eye as he beat his man on the outside on at least a dozen occasions. It was exciting wing play at its best so it was a real shame that his final ball was often so disappointing. Even so, he did have one cracking shot on goal that the keeper did well to palm away.
However, without a doubt it was Richard Eckersley who was ‘Man of the Match’ as he bombed up and down the wing to not only ably perform his defensive duties but to support Stewart at every opportunity.
With ten minutes to go Oldham started knocking some high balls into the box and, although Foster was in control, there were a few tricky moments for the defence to deal with. By hook or by crook they did so as the Reds held on for the win – overall, a really good team performance.
Final Score: Manchester United 2 Oldham Athletic 1
1. Ben Foster
2. Richard Eckersley
3. Oliver Gill
4. David Gray (c)
5. Scott Wootton
6. Matthew James
7. Cameron Stewart
8. Tom Cleverley
9. Federico Macheda
10. Sam Hewson
11. Jimmy Derbyshire (14. Magnus Eikrem)
Subs not used
12. Antonio Bryan
13. Ron-Robert Zieler
15. Oliver Norwood
16. Kenny Strickland