The 1st team travelled to Oxenhope for the first game of the season & got off to a great start with a 2-1 win.
Louis Sterling opened the scoring when the Oxenhope keeper made a hash of his clearance. The ball fell to Louis & he lifted the ball over the retreating keeper into an empty net.
A bad foul on Tom Skelly didn't even get a yellow card & the resultant trip to hospital proved how bad it was with Tom sustaining a broken ankle. This set the tone & another bad tackle this time by us led to a melee on the touch line. In the scuffle "Wee Baldy" from Oxenhope hit Liam Hartley with a cheap shot. When things had calmed down "Wee Baldy" was shown a red but unbelievably Liam was also shown a red, the ref wrongly thinking he'd made the tackle & then retaliated.
The sendings off affected us more than Oxenhope. We lost Liams energy in midfield & they lost very little.
Oxenhope got a grip of the game early in the second half & were awarded a dubious penalty. It was afoul outside the box but the player rolled a couple of times & ended up in the penalty area. The penalty taker sent Matty Leaper the wrong way to equalise.
The way we were playing didn't give a lot of hope for the rest of the game but a long through into the box was flicked on by Niall "Blobber" O'Regan and Martyn Hall racing in to the box headed home from close range.
We had a couple of other chances in the half but it was mainly backs to the wall. The lads defended resolutely though and held out for a good 2-1 win.
3 points in the bag but a lot of improvement needed going forward