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Man City Game 2 2006

Monday 8th May, The City of Manchester Stadium, Att 168

Manchester City (Home) 3 Manchester City (Away) 2

A lucky goal from Johnson gave City Home the edge in a gripping and hard fought victory over Hinchcliffe’s men in the final match of the Manchester City leg of the Football Aid Championships.

Despite two close chances from Barker in the first 15 minutes, the first from a superb strike, which hit the bar, it was Away that opened the scoring in the 25th minute.

Striker Spencer finding himself unmarked and with time on his hands outside the penalty area, sent a cheeky chip high over keeper Richards, who could only watch in disgust as the ball dropped neatly into goal.

But their lead was short-lived as Barker hungry for a goal came forward once more. He deftly cut in from the wing, surged into Away’s box and lashed a volley past the keeper.

With 2 minutes on the clock, Home were on the prowl again. Centre forward Dickson ran onto a perfect through ball and slotted in Home’s second goal of the match.

Away’s keeper swiftly redeemed himself however, pulling off two phenomenal saves to prevent Home strengthening their lead going into the break.

The second half kicked off at a furious pace with Away pushing hard for the all-important equaliser. It took substitute Mickle only 5 minutes to break Home’s defensive wall, charging down the left wing before letting rip with a beauty of a shot, which curled out of Richard’s reach and into goal.

But Brightwell’s men were not to be denied and swiftly retaliated with a counterattack of their own. Midfielder Warner found the ball at his feet in the penalty area and while his attempt lacked power, the Away keeper failed to get hold of the shot and the ball rolled into the right hand side of the goal.

Despite Away creating a hatful of chances for the remainder of the half, they failed to make the most of them and Home were relieved to hold onto their lead. The final score, 3-2 to a delighted Home side.

As Steven Charnock commented after the match, “What a brilliant experience! The whole afternoon was superb, from seeing my shirt up in the home changing room right through the match, which I was well pleased that I lasted through, and I even felt pretty fit at the end of play.

"The two legends were absolutely brilliant, and were both favourites of mine when they played for the Blues, so it was fabulous to be on the pitch with both Andy Hinchcliffe and Ian Brightwell. I was particularly excited to be on the same team as Ian Brightwell, as when I was a teenager in the 1960's, as well as being a reasonably good footballer, I was also a good athlete, with an emphasis on running, all distances from 100yds, to a mile. My two running heroes were Derek Ibbotson, and none other than Robbie Brightwell. So to get to meet and play with one of his sons was very special. Thanks again, Football Aid and see you next year!”