A summary of the action at Frenchfield Park
United played their second pre-season friendly in front of a decent crowd at Frenchfield Park on Tuesday evening and they came away with a healthy helping of goals and goodwill from what was an enjoyable game.
Carlisle, wearing their all-new yellow away strip, grabbed the lead with just two minutes played when Billy Paynter popped a neat header into the path of trialist Johnny Gorman. He pulled off his man and left Josh Richardson with no chance.
United looked confident and Sweeney sparked a flowing move when he picked the ball up deep in midfield. Robson and Marrow stepped in to help and the cross from the left was just an inch in front of Paynter as he stretched to get a touch.
The visitors kept the pressure on and Gorman returned the favour with a lovely through ball which left Paynter with just Richardson to beat. He dropped a shoulder and clipped it under the dive to register his second strike of the pre-season campaign.
Paynter looked impressive as he settled into the game and he used his strength to shield a clipped pass forward from Marrow with his back to goal. A quick turn left two defenders standing but Richardson dropped low to tip the shot wide of the target.
The home Blues had a good spell on the half hour with Gardner and Jackson testing the back line, but both shots were blocked at source as Meppen-Walter and O’Hanlon stood tall.
Boss Graham Kavanagh made nine changes for the second half with Meppen-Walter and trialist Steven Rigg handed 90 minutes of action.
Josh Gillies looked lively from the off and his first shot of the night was just a whisker away as it zipped past the upright with the stopper beaten.
United’s third, on 51 minutes, was arguably the strike of the night as a one-touch move left Brad Potts in acres of space. He had no hesitation in putting his boot through it and the crowd rose in unison to applaud as it flew into the top corner.
Thomson, Potts and Dempsey all went close as Carlisle kept the football coming and there was another contender for goal of pre-season on 64 minutes when Josh Gillies took charge of a 23 yard free kick. His dipping, curling effort smashed into the back of the net following the sweetest of dead ball connections.
A cool and calm approach from first year pro Kyle Dempsey brought goal number five when he ran across the face of the defence before unleashing a powerful shot. The keeper got his fingertips to it but he could do nothing to prevent it from finding it’s way into the onion bag.
And United wrapped things up for the night when Potts sent Brough clear on the left flank. A perfect cross was met by striker Mark Beck who kept his eye on the ball and firmly volleyed it past the stranded keeper.
United – Gillespie (Hanford 46), O’Hanlon (Thirlwell 46), Meppen-Walter, Grainger (Gillies 46), Symington (Thomson 46), Robson (Brough 46), Sweeney (Potts 46), Marrow (Dempsey 46), Rigg, Gorman (Amoo 46), Paynter (Beck 46).
Goals – Gorman (2), Paynter (9), Potts (51), Gillies (64), Dempsey (74), Beck (83).