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FC St Helens 2-3 WBAFC
Written by Passarella   
Wednesday, 24 April 2019 07:51


Leader grabs a late winner

With players unavailable, the reserves in a cup final, and also carrying several injuries from Wednesday’s final Whaley were always going to find this trip to St Helens to be a tough ask. The home side fielded a strong midfield and forward line but were always a little uncertain defensively affording Whaley opportunities throughout the game. So the visitors drew first blood when Leadbetter was upended in the six yard box… Sutton converting the spot kick. Unfortunately they didn’t keep the lead long. A couple of errors resulted in two goals in quick succession to put St Helens in front; a cross from the left was stroked in and then a midfield player was left with time enough to control the ball and half volleyed over Tatts; 2-1.

Whaley picked themselves up and dusted themselves down and made a good impact in to the second half as O’Donnell, who was on fire, and Leadbetter, who was only 50% fit, worked well together to force a corner which Gilbride curled dangerously over the keeper and into the far corner to give defenders no chance of clearing; 2-2. Two Sutton opportunities were magnificently saved by the St Helens’ keeper who also made a point blank save off of a Dan Gilbride effort and O’Donnell then hit the bar from 3 yards out. Having said all that St Helens were a constant threat, Lairds movement in particular was extremely good and positive but he was well monitored by Toseland and Kay.

Ultimately Whaley did grab the winner when Leadbetter latched on to a Gilbride through ball in on goal to calmly slot past the keeper. Leadbetter was then replaced by Whaley’s only sub on the day and with Toseland also coming off injured Whaley had to see the last ten minutes with ten men.

All in all a pleasing result with a depleted squad and that capped off with super hospitality from the St Helens staff.

Whaley’s man of the match for his work ethic and superb efforts to bring others into play the very promising young Jacob O’Donnell.

Tattersall; Bailey; Kay; Toseland; Gemmell; Gregory; Broome; Gilbride (1); Sutton (c) (1); Leadbetter (1); J O’Donnell

Subs J Bradley

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