Charnock crashed to a 5-0 home defeat at the hands of promotion chasing Bootle.
Charnock Richard 0 Bootle 5
Saturday 13th April 2019, Hallmark Security League Premier Division
CHARNOCK RICHARD 0
Attendance : 142
Charnock Richard: Kyle Haslam, Spencer Bibby, James Walker (Jake Higham (71), Ashley Young, Oliver Turner, Ross O’Farrell (Owen Morris 79), Matt Davison, Nathan Fairhurst, Carl Grimshaw, Joe Noblet, Troy Carsley (Alex Dodd 71). Sub: (Not Used) Oliver Oxley.
Bootle: Ryan Jones, Kieran Halligan, Michael Carberry, Steven Hoy, Sean Coulton, Connor Millington, Jamie Clark, Liam Loughlin (Johnny Foy 68), Steven Jones, Carl Peers (Jack Goodwin 81), Ryan Cox (Dale Korie-Butler). Subs: (Not Used) Jack McGovern, Lee Hughes.
If football matches were decided by statistics Charnock, with the greater percentage of the possession and the most passes completed, would have won this game but it is goals that decide games and Bootle scored five without the Villagers being able to find the net. Charnock will be disappointed with the manner in which all the goals were conceded but when competing against teams in the upper reaches of this league, total concentration is required. Bootle are on a tremendous winning run having won every game since mid-November and are seriously threatening the chances of their tenants City of Liverpool winning the title.
Bootle scored two goals in the first half, the second on the stroke of half time and the Villagers certainly had a hill to climb in the second half but two goals in two minutes midway through the second 45 minutes finally killed off any hopes that Charnock may have harboured to get back into the game. A fifth goal, with five minutes remaining, really rubbed salt into the wound.
The squad was unchanged following the excellent away win at Ashton Athletic on the previous Tuesday. It was a fine afternoon with sunny periods but there was a wicked easterly wind and anyone of the 142 spectators who did not have warm clothing suffered. The pitch was, as usual, in fine condition if a little hard.
Bootle won the toss so Charnock kicked off playing, with the benefit of the wind, towards the Mawdesley Plantation end. It was a really disjointed start to the game with neither side able to hold on to the ball. Both teams soon settled down however with Charnock again producing some neat man-to-man passing football. Bootle, with much more pace up front, tended to deliver penetrating through balls. Nathan Fairhurst tried a shot from distance, assisted by the wind, that dropped over the bar and when Millington got on the end of a long clearance Haslam did well to beat away his powerful shot. The visitors took the lead on 16 minutes; it was Millington again firing in a cross shot that Carl Peers, in front of goal, appeared to deflect beyond the reach of Haslam. It was disappointing for Charnock but they continued to have a major slice of the possession and when Carsley put Grimshaw clear Jones, in the visitor’s goal, made a fine save, the ball bouncing out to Noblet on the edge of the area but with an open goal he shot was over the bar. Just a little composure was required. Turner, at the back post, could only head a diagonal cross from Bibby into the hands of Jones as Charnock looked to get back on terms. A great header from Grimshaw from a right wing corner on 23 minutes found the net via the underside of the bar but the referee had already blown for a foul on a defender. Bootle’s speedy forwards continued to threaten, Millington knocking a shot across the face of the goal before a good run and cross by Davison saw a defender head clear just as the ball was dropping on to Grimshaw’s head. Charnock continued to dominate possession and a whipped cross from Carsley was just too far in front of Grimshaw at the back post. Then Fairhurst sliced a shot well wide from the right side of the penalty area. A Noblet shot saw Jones turn his effort over the bar as the Villagers remained on top as half time approached. As often happens when one side is dominating, a minute into added time, the visitors increased their lead, a cross from the right by Millington saw Cox at the back post head the ball back along the goal line and into the net at the far post. After all the pressure by the Villagers it was disappointing to be going in 2-0 down at the interval.
With the strength of the wind it was always going to be more difficult for Charnock in the second half and so it proved although they again had the majority of the play they produced few real chances as Bootle continued to defend impressively. The visitors made an impressive start to the second half storming forward from the kick off and Haslam pushed away a strong shot before the follow up was blocked and eventually the ball was cleared. Charnock quickly picked up their passing football but it proved very difficult to penetrate the Bootle defence who obviously were intent on preserving their lead. The Bucks maintained their ability to break and the home defence never really looked comfortable even though most of the action was in the visitors’ half. The Villagers won a number of corners and from one in the 54th minute Jones brought off a fine save from a Grimshaw header palming the ball away for a corner at almost point blank range. A free kick out on the left just inside the Charnock half saw Bootle increase their lead, on 62 minutes, when Bibby’s attempted clearance appeared to come back off the chest of Peers and past Haslam into the net. A minute later it was 4-0 when right back Halligan was allowed to run from his own half, virtually without challenge, into the box and deliver an accurate shot into the corner of the net. The match as a contest was over but thankfully Charnock continued to produce their football; Fairhurst twisted and turned in the area but his final shot was headed away for yet another corner. On 68 minute Ashley Young had a shooting chance from the edge of the box but like too many of Charnock’s opportunities he fired over the bar. The 71st minute saw the start of the substitutions with Charnock bringing on Jake Higham for James Walker and Alex Dodd for Spencer Bibby whilst Bootle introduced Dale Korie-Butler for Ryan Cox. A Young header was just past the post and Haslam had to save a Korie-Butler shot before Owen Morris replaced Ross O’Farrell. Bootle’s final goal came on 85 minutes when Young, facing his own goal, under pressure from Steven Jones attempted to clear the ball with a misplaced overhead kick that gave Jones a chance and he skilfully lobbed Haslam to complete the scoring.
Despite the final score, Charnock’s worst defeat of the season, their overall performance had not been that disappointing, a couple of excellent saves from the visitors’ keeper and a failure again to shoot and when they did, a lack of accuracy contributing to the result. Bootle converted most of their chances, a number of which had occurred through poor defending. However, history will only record the final result and it will appear than the Villagers were almost overrun but in this game that was far from the case.
On Saturday 18th April Charnock travel to the St Luke’s Barton Stadium to meet 1874 Northwich Kick-Off 3.00pm. Easter Monday sees Charnock at home to Squires Gate again 3.00pm is the kick-off time.