Men’s football seconds narrowly lose out to 10-man Lancaster

UNIVERSITY OF YORK 1-2 LANCASTER UNIVERSITY

Images: Agatha Torrance

Despite battling hard, York’s football seconds were unable to find the scintillating form they showcased throughout most of this year, ultimately losing out to two headed Lancaster goals. The game was even throughout, a narrow pitch leading to congested play, and, although Lancaster did have a man sent off, York didn’t make their numerical advantage pay. However, this shouldn’t take the shine off a very successful year for the men’s seconds, who won their previous six matches in all competitions.

The match took a while to find its groove, with few opportunities in the opening moments. Ash Daly swung a free-kick from deep that looked to have deceived the goalkeeper, but it dipped too late and went over the bar. Daly again offered crossing threat, a Lancastrian player clearing his low cross over the bar.

It was Lancaster that scored with their first clear opportunity, however. A corner was looped into the danger area, straight onto the head of the Lancaster target man. His glancing effort was placed just beyond the reach of Luke Bradley.

This was soon followed a second, very similar, goal. A Lancaster winger crossed from the left, with the Lancaster target man’s downward header again finding the net and silencing the York contingent.

The Black and Gold attempted to instantly respond, with a low cross met by the head of Freddie Ferrao. His effort was unfortunate to glance off the post. Jamie Trant shot from 12 yards after controlling a Connor McCoy long throw, his shot just wide.

The second half again began with an even balance to play. Luke Bradley produced a god save after yet another Lancaster header looked to be heading in, palming well over the bar. Although enjoying good possession, York didn’t look likely to respond to the two Lancaster goals. Ferrao worked his way into the box and played the ball to the free Dalton Harris, but his shot was wayward, lacking power and resulted in a goal kick.

However, after Harris was held in the area after a corner, the referee awarded a Black and Gold penalty. Despite the best efforts of the Lancaster fans to distract the taker, Jon Gill coolly dispatched the spot kick into the corner.

This certainly ramped up the pressure, with events beginning to turn against the Lancastrians. After earlier abusing the referee, their central midfielder earned himself a second yellow after a lunging tackle on Matt Darling. York were beginning to sense their chance, attempting to pile on the pressure. Unfortunately, Lancaster were composed despite their numerical disadvantage. Jamie Trant and Jon Gill both had efforts well saved by the Lancaster keeper, and, in the end, Lancaster worked hard to edge out the win.

Captain Matt Bainbridge was reflective after the match, stating, “In the first half, we didn’t defend too well, especially for the two goals. In the second half, they haven’t had a shot but unfortunately we didn’t have any cutting edge. It was a disappointing end to a good season.”

York: Bradley, Seed, Dunk, Darling, Daly, Spurling, Gennoy, Bainbridge (C), Ferrao, Trant, Harris Subs: McCoy, Gill, Kirk.

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