by | Jan 6, 2024

Matt Dudley scored what looked to be a winner for the Rams until the late drama.

NWC Premier Division • 6 Jan 2024
A first ever visit to Litherland saw the Rams come away deflated having conceded an equaliser in the last minute of added on time.
Leckenby's Tea Rooms

Once again, a failure to put a game to bed came back to haunt the visitors, who just cannot put a decent run together.

Leckenby's Tea Rooms

The only positive was the fact that after three successive defeats, at least the rot was stopped.

Playing before the lowest league crowd in many years, the soulless ground is hardly conducive to an entertaining afternoon, and this match certainly proved that.

On a poor pitch, neither side was able to string a combination of passes together, although for much of the first half, the visitors seemed to be in control.

However, after 30 minutes, REMYCA’s best player Elliot Taylor produced an excellent long-range effort that Ryan Hamer managed to tip over the bar, and minutes later the same player raced through on goal but fired wide.

Despite much of the play happening in the home half, it took until a minute from the break before Ramsbottom seriously threatened the home goal.

Matt Dudley turned cleverly in the box and his first time effort was well pushed away by former Rams keeper Calderbank-Park, and Dylan Fitzgerald could only manage to hammer the rebound into the side netting.

So a half-time cuppa was a welcome relief for the sparse crowd as the game was totally uninspiring.

The first chance of the second half again fell to RREMYCA’s Taylor, and his cross shot cannoned away off the crossbar with Hamer well beaten.

Just as a 0-0 scoreline looked inevitable, on 70 minutes up popped Dudley to finally instil some life into the match. He was in the right place to poke home a left-wing cross following a good run and centre from Luke Sephton, to give the Rams a slender lead, which they just about deserved.

Dudley had another opportunity five minutes later and Kuda Chingwaro attempted to double the lead on 82 minutes, but on both occasions they were denied.

A second goal would have killed off the contest, and Dudley was presented with a great opportunity as the game entered stoppage time, but chasing toward the home goal he misfired wide of the target. It was a miss that came back to haunt the Rams.

For as the final minute of the game arrived, a high centre from the right lofted over the Rams defence, and was returned across goal where Taylor hammered the ball in from six yards, much to the frustration of the prostrate Ramsbottom defenders.

So a game that looked to be heading for a Ramsbottom win, despite the lack of quality, saw the visitors cruelly denied and ruing the missed openings that they had failed to convert.

Manager Steve Wilkes was understandably upset. “Football can be cruel sometimes, and today was one of those days. The pitch didn’t allow either team to play any football at all but I thought we showed the more quality and our goal proved that.

“But when you get told the referee is adding on 4 minutes and the opposition score after that when no physio has been on, you really have to question the reason why.

“But we’ve stopped the rot and move onto Tuesday night at home to Colne”.

RAMSBOTTOM UNITED: Hamer, Radcliffe, Walder, Sephton, Lent, Black, Fitzgerald, Whittingham, Dudley, Whyte (Ogunby 28mins, Bartram 80mins), Chingwaro (Hayhurst 85mins) Subs not used: Campbell, Lewis

Att: 98