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Late penalty proves costly for Roos

   

Dunnington Reserves 2

Roos FC 1

 
       
   

ROOS went out of the ERCFA Senior Country Cup at the first hurdle last Saturday, losing 2-1 at Dunnington Reserves, near York, their exit confirmed courtesy of a 90th minute penalty.

As is the norm in this competition, manager Les Sennett used this match to get some game time into squad members that have not played much so far this season, making nine changes from the starting 11 the previous week, although one was forced with goalkeeper Max Watling-Precious missing due to an injury; Cam Maplebeck donning the gloves.

The hosts started the better of the two sides as Roos took time to settle and two minutes in their number 10 had a half chance but his shot cleared the bar. Dunnington continued to press and four minutes later their number 9 went close but he pulled his shot wide of the righthand post.

Their dominance continued and on 10 minutes the centre-half came up for a corner, but he did not take advantage of a free header, heading wide from 10 yards out.

On 14 minutes Maplebeck raced out to make an important tackle before the Dunnington number 8 tried his luck from just outside the box but he also failed to find the target.

The visitors conceded a free-kick on 21 minutes and Maplebeck did well to turn a rasping drive from all of 30 yards over the crossbar.

Roos were gradually warming to their task and a flowing move on 22 minutes almost yielded a goal, but the advancing Ben Ledger was caught offside.

A minute later Roos went in front in sensational style. Jack Bristow showed great tenacity as he battled for the ball and as a Dunnington defender went to ground, he handled the ball giving Roos a free-kick, 25 yards out. Bristow stepped up and curled a delightful left-footed strike into the far corner with the home keeper unable to get anywhere near it.

Dunnington came storming back and a crucial tackle from Jack Todd broke down one attack, while at the other end, a fine run from Matty Carrick went unrewarded as he lost the ball over the goal-line, having breezed past three defenders.

A long ball from the Dunnington half was headed clear by Lucas Sneddon and with 31 minutes on the clock, Maplebeck had to be alert, to collect a sliced clearance from Sneddon as the lively number 9 sensed a half chance.

The home side were level soon afterwards as a break down the right presented a chance to the centre-forward and he tucked the ball home inside the far post.

Dunnington still looked the more threatening side going forward but a superb Roos move on 42 minutes on the counter-attack went unrewarded as it sadly broke down deep inside the Dunnington half.

With rolling subs the order of the day, Dan Smith, Ash McKinley and Bob Eldon-Smith were all introduced at half-time and the match became much more evenly balanced.

On 51 minutes Todd made a timely interception and released Eldon-Smith; he pulled the ball back to Mitch Proby but as he prepared to shoot, the ball took a wicked bounce and it went out for a goal kick.

Three minutes later Connor McKinley was not that far away with a speculative strike from 35 yards after excellent work from Proby but Dunnington quickly got the ball up the other end and James Mills made an excellent block to deny a striker.

The hosts were still very dangerous on the attack and the number 7 almost put them in front on 57 minutes but his shot struck the post and Roos cleared their lines.

Roos almost regained the lead two minutes later. Ash McKinley worked himself into space down the left with some excellent skill and control and as he rolled the ball across for Proby, his instinctive flick with the outside of his boot drifted just over the bar.

With 25 minutes left Bristow struck another fierce shot from distance that the home goalkeeper did well to gather as it bounced awkwardly just in front of him and Roos were now looking the side in the ascendency.

The industrious Bristow was felled 25 yards out on 75 minutes and Smith curled a powerful shot over the top of the Dunnington wall that looked destined for the bottom corner, only for the home shot-stopper to make a superb save diving low to his right.

With 10 minutes left Roos squandered their best chance of the second half as Eldon-Smith found himself in space 12 yards out, but his fierce volley whistled agonisingly over the crossbar.

Roos were getting closer and on 84 minutes Eldon-Smith and Carrick linked well down the right before the latter had his shot parried. The ball rolled across goal and as Ash McKinley arrived at the back post, he could only find the side netting from close range.

With no extra time on the agenda, penalties loomed large as the game entered three minutes of stoppage time and then came the late drama. The Dunnington number 9 strode into the Roos box and as he rounded Maplebeck, the stand-in keeper caught him, bringing him down, and the referee pointed straight to the spot.

Maplebeck guessed the right way, but the well-struck penalty was just inside his righthand post and the home side had snatched the lead.

With just over a minute to respond, Roos pushed everyone forward and they forced a late corner, but the home side held on and advanced to round two. Roos are back in league action this Saturday with a home tie against Haltemprice.

Roos are fifth in the Division One table with four points from three games played, one place behind their opponents, who also have four points, but have only had two matches so far.

The pair were together in Division Two over the last two seasons and in the four games played, the visitors always came out on top. In 2016-17 Haltemprice won 4-3 at Roos, coming back from 3-0 down with 10 men to stun the hosts, while the reverse fixture at Cottingham High School saw Roos run out impressive 6-1 winners.

This feat was repeated last season as Haltemprice won 4-0 on an early season visit to Roos when they took advantage of a strong wind at their backs to lead 4-0 at half-time before defending really well in a second half that was goal-less, but in the reverse fixture Roos romped to an emphatic 6-2 win.

Hopefully, that trend will not repeat itself this season!

 
         
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