FC United of Manchester v Nuneaton Town
Wednesday 9th December, 2015;
Manchester United may have crashed out of the Champions League this week, but the Boro found that there is some spirit in the other boys in red as FC United of Manchester served up an energetic performance to take all three points in this Vanarama National League North fixture.
United threw caution to the wind and made the most of home advantage to leave Boro tasting defeat for the first time since the North Ferriby United FA Cup loss at the beginning of October.
Despite an assured start from Nuneaton it was United who struck first as they exposed Boro on the break.
Nuneaton were caught pushing forward with plenty of men committed in the United half, but Callum Chettle lost possession and the home side made him and the Boro pay.
Sam Madeley ran through on the Nuneaton goal where he let fly with an effort from the edge of the box which took a big deflection off an outstretched Boro leg and nestled into the net beyond Jordan Smith.
The goal should have been a wake-up call for Nuneaton, but their sloppiness was punished again a short time later.
The ball was given away on the edge of the box and George Thomson had plenty of time, and room, to move forward before shooting past Smith.
The second goal saw Nuneaton react positively and they halved the deficit with a wonderfully worked goal of their own.
A series of slick passes were exchanged in the final third before Aaron Williams laid the ball off to Rob Duffy who calmly finished the move off with a sweet side-footed effort that left keeper David Carnell with no chance.
Nuneaton had the bit between their teeth and continued to pressure United and it was no surprise that the league leaders drew level just before the break.
Elliott Whitehouse once again showed his ability to be in the right place at the right time and thundered a cut-back from Jordan Keane into the roof of the net.
HT: FC United of Manchester 2 Nuneaton Town 2
United retook the lead early in the second half in somewhat fortuitous fashion.
A cross from the right hand side from Madeley was steered into his own net by defender James Clifton from close range giving Smith no chance to react.
Nuneaton struggled to get into their stride throughout the second half and a drilled effort from Marlon Harewood that hit the side netting was the closest they came to drawing level.
That said, Nuneaton did have two good penalty claims waved away - both were handball incidents that, on another day, might have been given.
FC UNITED of MANCHESTER: Carnell, Stott, Thurston, Kay, Smyth, Ashworth, Fallon, Winter, Greaves (Patterson 75), Thomson (Daniels 87), Madeley (Wolfenden 83).
Subs not used: Lindfield, Brown.
NUNEATON TOWN: J.Smith, Clifton, Maguire, Lane, C.Keane (Reid 72), Morgan, J.Keane, Chettle (Daniels 78), Whitehouse, Williams, Duffy (Harewood 72).
Subs not used: Hicks, De La Paz.