Longridge Town FC 0
Charnock Richard 3
Longridge Town welcomed league leaders Charnock Richard to the Mike Ryding Ground on Saturday, knowing that they would have to be at their best to get anything from the fixture.
Donnelly and Carey made three changes to the starting line up. Matt Hind came back into goal for Alex Walsh, Rob Horn was in the back three for Liam Pearson, John Carroll at right wing back for Dan Wilkinson and Matt Billington was called onto the bench.
Town were still without Jack English and Rick Murch through injury.
A large crowd turned out for the match, all hoping this game would provide the same entertainment as seen in previous fixtures.
The crowd didn ’t have long to wait for the first attempt at goal, Town’s Craven picking the ball up on the right after the Charnock defence failed to clear their lines, but his shot was into the side netting.
Coar also had an early opportunity, driving at the Charnock defence, but just before he was about to shoot Hayton got a tackle in diverting the ball away from goal.
Charnock had their first real attack on five minutes, a ball falling to midfielder Fletcher 30 yards out from goal. He rolled the ball through to Burrows, who with his back to goal shrugged off a defender, took the ball wide and unleashed a shot which went under the diving body of Hind and hit the back of the net to give Charnock an early 1-0 lead.
The leaders then had a good spell for about 20 minutes, with Longridge hoping to keep the 1-0 scoreline and get a foot back in the game.
Two half chances fell to Charnock forward Grimshaw.With the first he smashed the ball over the bar from six yards out and then, after a long searching ball was allowed to bounce by the Longridge back line, he looked likely to put Charnock 2-0 ahead before Horn slid in to take the ball away from danger.
Longridge slowly got back into the game, but did pose any real threat at the Charnock goal. Two long range efforts from John Ross both failed to hit the target.
The second half was started much better by both sides, Longridge getting in some good positions but failing to provide the finish required.
And Town were punished for not being more clinical in front of goal when, on 55 minutes Dashti ,was allowed to get on the ball from some slack marking on the right wing and he delivered a ball into the box.
Some indecisive defending let Roberts knick in on goal and hit the ball into the back of the net.
Town refused to give up and from the kick-off Horn played a through ball to Ross, who found himself one on one with the keeper Bates, but he was unable to finish, the ball falling into the keeper’s arms.
Another shot by Coar caused Bates no problems.
Longridge’s best goal chance came on 70 minutes when a good break led to a right wing cross landing on Coar’s head at the back post, but he put the ball wide.
Charnock had some final opportunities to take the game out of reach, Nolan putting Hogg clear on 79 minutes but he shot wide.
Nolan was also brought down just outside the area moments later, but the resulting free kick was easily saved by Hind.
Longridge pushed forward for the final minutes in the hunt for two quick goals, but on a break Charnock opened up the home defence and when Nolan beat Hind to the ball his pass gave Hogg a chance to drive the ball into the net, leaving any hint of a point beyond reach.
Man of the Match: John Ross.
Longridge face Fleetwood Hesketh on October 26 at home at the Mike Ryding Ground. Kick off 3pm
Longridge: Hind, Woodruff, Garry, Horn, Carroll, Donnelly, Burton (Newby 25’), Ross, Longshaw, Murch, Craven (Carey 80’) & Coar; Unused Subs: Billington, Williams