Our Manchester City games at the Etihad Stadium were spread over two nights this year and the 1st encounter took place at the recently expanded stadium on Thursday 12th May 2016. Game 1 provided plenty of entertainment for the watching fans in the stands and despite the efforts of a strong Home side ended in a comfortable 0-5 win for the impressive Away team.
Date: Thursday 12th May 2016
Venue: Etihad Stadium
Man City (Home) vs Man City (Away)
Kick Off: 18:00 pm
Match Officials: Neil Matthews, Ben Matthews, Phil Hewitson & Gary Burke
The Home side got us underway in the warm evening Manchester sunshine and although they started with intent the early goal came courtesy of the Away side in the 5th min. Away No 8 and Captain Andy Lakin in the right place to poke home Away No 9 Dave Taylor’s inch-perfect low cross (0-1).
The Away side were buoyed by their early goal and Home keeper Daniel Lloyd had to deal with Football Aid regular Dave Taylor’s elegant attempted chip son after, however the impressive keeper was equal to the effort.
However the Away team’s early pressure paid off again and they increased their lead in the 9th min when Lloyd was beaten by an excellent 20 yard strike from Away No 6 Liam Armstrong (0-2).
After the Away team’s early domination of the game, the Home side had their 1st chance when Home No 9 Ian Watson found himself one-on-one with Away No 1 Gerry McGill, however the striker was denied when the Irish keeper expertly clutched on to his strike.
Another chance soon fell for the Home side when a race between Away No 10 Andy Constantinou & Home No 11 James Stansfield ended with Home No 11 James Stansfield just edging it and firing a low 1st time strike. However the Away No 1 Gerry McGill fantastically saved at his near post.
A quick counter-attack followed and it saw the Away side extend their lead in the 25th min. Away No 11 Darren Winnard skilfully finished past the goalkeeper to give a solid lead to the Away team (0-3).
Then a fantastic diving save to his right hand side by Home keeper Daniel Lloyd denied Darren Winnard his 2nd goal of the game. It was turning into a personal duel between the pair as the goalkeeper then denied another good chance, a header this time.
We then saw the crossbar rattled when Away No 10 Andy Constantinou’s long-range effort was well struck; it bounced back into the path of striker Darren Winnard who put the ball in the back of the net, but he turned round to see the linesman’s flag raised for offside.
The referee called time on a 1st half in which the Away side had built up a solid lead against their Home counterparts, who despite their deficit were putting up a good fight to get back into the game.
Half Time: Man City (Home) 0 - 3 Man City (Away)
The game was restarted by the Away side who wanted to continue the 2nd half just as they left off in the 1st.
And it was the Away side that had the 1st chance in the 2nd half, Away No 8 Andy Lakin’s effort was stopped by a superb sliding challenge by Home No 10 Gareth Barnbrook and the rebound from Away No 7 Terry Rickeard was then blocked by Home No 15 David Brown.
Home No 10 Gareth Barnbrook was getting involved in all the action, but after skipping a couple of challenges he couldn’t manage to get a shot past Away No 1 Gerry McGill.
Soon the score became 0-4 in the 70th min, a pinpoint cross from Away No 6 Liam Armstrong found No 11 Darren Winnard in the box who fired home from close range (0-4).
Then Away No 11 Dean Winnard thought his long-range strike had sneaked in the net however it was an optical illusion as it rippled the side netting.
The Home side nearly found a way into the game after a lovely piece of skill from Home No 9 Ian Watson tricked the defender, however the striker’s shot on goal went agonisingly wide.
We were then treated to one of the saves of the season when Home keeper Daniel Lloyd acrobatically tipped No 10 Andy Constantinou’s shot over the bar!
The Home side then smacked the crossbar following Home No 5 Ben Leeson’s vicious strike from outside the box. This was shortly followed by an effort from Home No 9 Ian Watson whose shot was deflected over the bar! It was a good attacking spell from the Home team, who were still determined to find a way into the game.
However it was not to be and as the game became stretched due to tired legs for both teams, the Away team wrapped up the win in the 85th min after a fantastic close range finish from Away No 10 Andy Constantinou (0-5).
And that was it. It was a controlled 0-5 win for the impressive Away side in the end, but the Home side tried their best to frustrate them all the way, and provided plenty of attacking threat themselves. All in all it was a great game in warm conditions, huge thanks again to all the players and spectators who made our 1st Man City game of 2016 such a great occasion.
Full Time: Man City (Home) 0 - 5 Man City (Away)
Man of the Match Home: Daniel Lloyd
Man of the Match Away: Darren Winnard
Moment of the Match: Gerry McGill
Home Team: Daniel Lloyd, Ryan McDonald, Martin Johnstone (C), Ben Leeson, Josh Gibbons, Kev Wright, Kevin Robertson, Ian Watson, Gareth Barnbrook, James Stansfield, David Brown, Colin Thompson, Michael Johnson
Home Mascot: Ryan Petch
Away Team: Gerry McGill, Adam Canning, Glen Phillimore, Chris Laurie, Liam Armstrong, Terry Rickeard, Andy Lakin (C), Dave Taylor, Andy Constantinou, Darren Winnard, Steve Charnock, Craig Gilchrist, David Starkie, Andy Lakin (H8)
Away Mascot: Eleanor Tooby
Match Report written by Matt Annis