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FC United Of Manchester 1 Trafford 1
12:03pm Wednesday 22nd January 2014 in Trafford Sport
TRAFFORD earned themselves another crucial league point with a battling display in monsoon conditions at Gigg Lane on Tuesday night.
The hosts were on top in the opening stages and took a deserved lead after just six minutes when Callum Byrne blasted a great drive into the top corner from 20 yards.
Trafford almost levelled immediately when Tom Schofield powered in a header following a Luke Heron free kick only to see Dave Carnell tip the ball acrobatically over the crossbar.
From the resultant corner Shelton Payne’s low shot was cleared off the line by Greg Daniels.
In the 22nd minute the visitors forced the equaliser when another wickedly in-swinging free kick by Heron was met by a soaring header by Steve Mason that flew past Carnell and inside the upright.
Both sides repeatedly gave the ball away in the pouring rain and there was little or no goalmouth action for the remainder of the first half.
However, the second period began with the Rebels forcing the pace and an amazing goalmouth scramble ended with Chris Worsley prodding the ball into Kieran O’Hara’s hands from just six yards.
At the other end, Simon Hackney curled a free kick from the edge of the area inches wide before a half cleared corner in the 53rd minute ended with Callum Byrne firing just wide.
FC dangerman Byrne then defied the elements to make a great run down the middle before being denied by a superb last ditch tackle by Nia Bayunu.
The conditions then got the better of both teams as possession was conceded repeatedly and chances were at a premium.
However, the hosts raised their game in the closing minutes and forced Trafford to defend desperately.
Mike Norton twice fired well wide from good positions but the best chance fell to the impressive Jerome Wright in the 89th minute when he cut in from the left but blasted his shot over from 15 yards.
A rather disappointing game played in atrocious conditions came to a close with Trafford delighted to have collected another vital league point and their future in the Evo Stik League Premier Division now looks assured.