February 20, 2013 by Matthew Bradley
Four goals from Ged McAllister inspired the Cheshire League to a 6-1 victory over East Lancashire as they secured a place in the Inter League final.
After McAllister had scored the only goal in the first leg, Cheshire displayed a second leg demolition job to ensure they would progress.
The final will take place against Liverpool or Manchester, the team from Merseyside currently 3-2 up after the first leg.
The game swiftly swept into action as Cheshire went close five minutes in, as the Lancashire keeper was brought into action to produce a fine save after a Nathan Williams corner, the referee ignored the following claims that the ball crossed the line.
Cheshire felt even more aggrieved by the decision 12 minutes in as Lancashire took the lead. A defensive mix up saw the Lancashire number 8 go through on goal, he went past the goalkeeper and put his side into the lead.
As soon as the game restarted Cheshire made their intentions for the rest of the game clear, with a quick fire equaliser. The referee awarded a penalty to the Reds, and Whaley Bridge’s Lee Morris was calm from the spot as he guided the ball into the bottom right corner to level the score.
Seven minutes later Cheshire took the lead on the night, McAllister turned his marker inside out, and stroked the ball home gently with the outside of his boot. A goal of real quality.
Slack defending gave McAllister his second, the Lancashire defence afforded the Eagle Sports man far too much space, and despite the pressure of the defender he had the composure to poke it home to give Cheshire a two goal margin inside half an hour and put Lloyd’s men three up in the tie.
The game was wrapped up just before halftime with the fourth goal for Cheshire. Rob Hope delivered an inviting ball into the box, and despite poor connection with the ball, Morris got his second goal of the game.
Despite conceding four goals, Lancashire’s defence simply didn’t learn their lesson, as the long ball constantly caused them trouble. A hopeful punt up from the Cheshire defence again put McAllister through on goal, and the outcome was obvious as he completed his hat trick. With precision he guided the ball through the goalkeepers’ legs to put the game well and truly out of the visitors reach.
Lancashire couldn’t break through the Cheshire defence, Jon Shakeshaft of Greenalls displayed brilliant ball playing skills, and substitute Nathan Ogden was impressive from the bench.
The scoring was wrapped up on the hour when McAllister again found himself one on one after intercepting a short backpass to the goalkeeper. Again, he calmly slotted the ball in the bottom corner to finish off the scoring at 6-1.
Chris Latham donned the Cheshire captaincy for the last ten minutes and he personified the Cheshire performance in the 90th minute, despite the game clearly being finished he chased down a lost ball to win the ball back in a dangerous area. That is the kind of effort and determination that gave Cheshire the victory.
After a hard fought first leg victory in Lancashire, Cheshire manager Steve Lloyd will be delighted that his side effectively killed off the tie in the first half of the second leg with plenty of goals and a performance to match. Cheshire will go into the final brimming with confidence.