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Match Report  |  Loughborough Students vs Gresley Rovers

Loughborough Students  1
Moore 67
Gresley Rovers  1
Seal 8

United Counties Premier Division North

The University Stadium, Loughborough

Saturday, 2nd October 2021, 3.00pm

Rovers Versus Students Ends All Square

Harry Tizard

Gresley Rovers continued their strong start to the season with a 1-1 draw away to fourth-placed Loughborough Students.

Both teams came into the game having lost just once in the league this season, both being on the opening day of the season, pushing for the summit of the Uhlsport United Counties League.

The Moatmen had won seven consecutive matches in all competitions before the match and were in a good position to extend their run to eight when Ryan Seal scored a stunning free-kick in the first-half.

Both sides had opportunities to score in what was a frantic opening 45 minutes, but it was the home side who controlled the second-half.

Feeling the effects of Tuesday nights encounter with Heather St John’s, the Rovers’ struggled to keep up with the pace of the hosts.

Having a plethora of chances, it was Cameron Moore who found an equaliser, latching onto a ball across the box by Andy Kanga.

As the game was reaching its conclusion, George Wilson was shown a red card having received two previous yellows, forcing Loughborough to end the game with 10 men and settle for a point.

Gresley had started slowly in the last three games, conceding first on each occasion, but found the lead inside the opening 10 minutes.

After Kane Lee won a free-kick from 30-yards-out, Seal was the man who took responsibility. Stepping over the ball instead of Steve Hart, who was injured for Saturday afternoon’s fixture, the captain whipped the ball into the top corner to give his side the lead.

Apart from the goal itself, Seal was doing well in his role of central striker. With Gresley transitioning quickly from defence to attack, the goal scorer was the hub of the attack, holding up the ball and bringing in Danny Munday and Lee into play.

Having limited chances in the 20 minutes, Loughborough almost gained an equaliser out of nowhere. With a ball over the top from the defence heading to the hands of Lewis Fenny, the wet weather conditions and the press of Tope Fadahunsi forced the ‘keeper to lose control of the ball.

Slipping out of his hands, it seemed the striker had a simple finish from close range, but Mason Frizelle covered well, blocking the goal-bound shot.

Cameron Moore was finding space down the left-flank for Loughborough and had a golden opportunity just before the half-hour mark.

Sprinting onto a lofted ball over the top of the Gresley defence, the winger dribbled the ball into the box before having his attempt palmed away by a diving Fenny.

Part of a midfield duo, Lee Butler and Michael Williams came close to giving their side a two-goal lead. Butler first came close, seeing his chipped effort flicked wide by the fingertips of Toby Larsen before Williams saw his powered effort from a tight angle pushed away from danger.

In an end-to-end game, it was the home side with the next chance. A scuffed shot from the edge of the area came to the feet of Luke Martin, whose lofted attempt looped over Fenny and rattled the crossbar. Following up on the rebound, Fadahunsi’s tame effort was collected well by the ‘keeper.

With minutes left of the half remaining, Gresley came close to doubling their advantage. Profiting from a poor clearance from the ‘keeper, a ball from the halfway line by Danny Munday found Seal, who thread a pass to an onrushing Lee. Sprinting down the right, Lee’s smashed shot across the goal was pushed away by Larsen, making up for his previous mistake.

The same combination was at it soon after. Seal found Lee once again, who snuck behind two defenders to face Larsen for the second time, but his poked attempt was turned around the post by an outstretched foot.

Loughborough brought on Andy Kanga and George Wilson at half-time to change the game in their favour. What followed was a slow opening to the second-half, but the latter of the two substitutes had a brilliant chance just past the hour-mark.

Hovering on the outskirts of the area, Wilson had time to set himself before driving his shot towards the near post. Denied by Fenny, his attempt brought Loughborough to life.

Kanga, the other man to come off the bench, became an instrumental figure in the attack, assisting soon after Wilson’s missed chance. Driving down the right-flank, Kanga pulled back the ball to a waiting Moore, who slotted the ball past Fenny.

The Gresley defence found it difficult to contain Kanga, who almost collected a second assist in as many minutes. Dribbling past a host of defenders, his chipped ball found Matty Bowman. From a tight angle, the full-back’s attempted chip was smothered by Fenny, who came out quickly to stop the shot.

The home side were in the ascendancy, but their last-minute attempt to find a winner was halted by a red card. A key player since his arrival onto the pitch, Wilson was given his marching orders after committing a foul whilst Gresley were counterattacking, seeing his second yellow card of the match.

Match Stats
Shots on Target 4 5
Shots off Target 2 4
Corners 2 9
Fouls Conceded 11 16
Yellow Cards 3 2
Red Cards 0 1
Possession (%) 50 50
Streaming Interview
Loughborough Students
1 Toby Larsen
2 Matty Bowman (c)
3 Finn Brennan
4 Sid Kerr
5 George Ward
6 Ollie Parsons
7 Luke Martin
8 Billy Mycroft-Edwards
9 Tope Fadahunsi
10 Ethan O'Toole Yellow Card
11 Cameron Moore
12 Ben Le Rougetel
not used
13 Ben Whiting (GK)
not used
14 Andy Kanga
for 10 - 46 mins
15 George Wilson Yellow Card  Yellow Card  Red Card
for 8 - 46 mins
16 Theo Sackey-Mensah
for 4 - 68 mins
Gresley Rovers
1 Lewis Fenney
2 George Clark
3 Lucas Harrison Yellow Card
4 Alby Lansdowne
5 Mason Frizelle
17 Michael Williams
28 Lee Butler
8 Ryan Seal (c)
9 Kane Lee
10 Izak Reid
21 Danny Munday
6 Ashley Brown Yellow Card
for 28 - 78 mins
7 Connor Ward
not used
12 Riley Crawley
for 9 - 83 mins
20 Louis Briscoe Yellow Card
for 10 - 74 mins
27 Kelvin Kasongo
not used
Other Match Info

Referee: Karl Bainbridge

Attendance: 227

Star Player
Lewis Fenney

Lewis Fenney

Great saves kept us in the game