West Lancashire League
Houston Cup Round 1
Leyland United Reserves 4 Garstang Reserves 0
Leyland who were looking for revenge having already lost to Garstang on their two league meetings this season, hosted top of the table Garstang for this Houston cup tie.
Garstang were without Curwen, Sutcliff and Turner only just made the starting line up due to illness. Josh Graham made his competitive debut for the Reserves in goal.Leyland started on fire against a lacklustre Garstang team who were outplayed for the whole of the game. Leyland were first in the tackle, picking up all the second balls and frankly, Garstang deserved nothing out of the game.
Josh Graham kept Garstang in the game with two excellent early saves but having made a great save from the on rushing attacker saw the rebound drilled into the Garstang net. 1:0 down soon became 2:0 when Garstang failed to defend a corner and allowed a Leyland player a free header to extend the lead. Eventually Garstang settled down and started to compete but despite some good possession and bright link up play were unable to craft a clear opportunity to reduce the deficit before half time.
At half time, Turner who was struggling with illness was replaced by Ben Roberts and Garstang had a good first five minuets of the second half, pushing Leyland back but again were unable to craft any opportunities for the forwards. Bailey made further changes replacing Southward and Shepherd with Assalone and the returning Phil Roskell. Despite the changes Garstang never really got going and Leyland scored a further two quick goals to kill the game off and the game could not end quick enough for Garstang. Final score 4:0 to Leyland.
By the very high standards which have been set this season, this was the teams worst performance by some distance and will no doubt act as a wake up call to blow any complacency away in the pursuit of the league title. Paul Bailey was bitterly disappointed but took some consolation that this was not a league game.
Next week Garstang will look to get themselves back to winning ways as they travel to take on Coppull United who currently sit mid-table.
MOM: Josh Graham who was one of the few players who did himself justice.
Garstang Team: Graham, Southward (Roskell), Hay, Matichechia C, Miller, Baldwin, J ack, Shepherd (Assalone) , Crook , Panepinto Harrison (Roberts) Subs: Roberts, Assalone, Roskell