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Match Reports

United 3 - 1 Crawley

28 November 2015

Wyke brace makes it a perfect week ...

Confidence continues to flow through the corridors of Brunton Park and a dominant victory over Crawley kept the momentum going courtesy of goals from strike partners Charlie Wyke and Jabo Ibehre.

It took Carlisle just two minutes to make their mark as they pushed men forward in support of midfielder Luke Joyce. He spotted Alex Gilliead in space on the right flank and the wide man left his marker for dead as he dropped a shoulder and sprinted into space. He had plenty of options and his near post cross was perfect for striker Charlie Wyke as he made a powerful run. Stopper Darryl Flahavan had no chance as a thumping header rattled into the roof of the net.

Both sides played to the conditions and United almost doubled their lead when Grainger used the wind to his advantage for a 23-yard free kick. He bent it towards the penalty spot and a flick from Raynes had to be diverted over the bar by Bradley as it threatened to creep in.

More good work in midfield from Gilliead brought Wyke into play yet again and the forward went on a purposeful run which took him past two and onto the edge of the box. Flahavan had to complete a fantastic one-handed save as the big striker went for a drilled finish.

The set piece was quickly delivered by Grainger and Mark Ellis was left with his head in his hands as his diving header from just six yards out somehow squirmed past the upright. Jabo Ibehre was next to curse his luck when an intricate set piece routine brought a clipped cross from Grainger. A downward header from close range had the keeper beaten but it dropped agonisingly wide of the target.

A first chance of the day for the visitors came on 23 minutes when Harrold nodded a long ball into Murphy's path. He had space and his rasping effort from distance skipped just wide as Gillespie dived to cover it.

A week to remember got even better for Charlie Wyke on 28 minutes when Gilliead showed more skill to leave the shell-shocked Mitch Hancox on the floor in the wake of his run. Kennedy took  a touch then back-heeled the low cross cleverly towards the in-form forward and he made no mistake as he set himself before he picked his spot to bag his third goal of the week.

The Red Devils brought themselves right back into it almost straight away as Harrold pounced on a loose ball in midfield. Rhys Murphy was completely unmarked in the area and he said thank you very much as he popped his header into the empty net.

Patient build-up play from the home side settled things down again and a flick from Wyke in the penalty spot 'D' put Ibehre into a good area. He took his shot, under pressure, and Flahavan was relieved to be able to drop low and scoop it up.

Mark Gillespie had to go full stretch to palm a Walton free kick away from his bottom corner as Crawley finished the first half on his front foot, and Raynes did well to block from Murphy when a half cleared corner was poked back into the mix.

Carlisle restored their two-goal advantage with just four minutes on the second half clock and it was goal number twelve for the campaign for Jabo Ibehre as he got onto the end of a sublime cross from Luke Joyce. Wyke challenged for it first but it was his strike partner who did the damage with a well-timed run and a determined finish.

The pace of the game dropped as Crawley licked their wounds and Smith had to drop deep to cover as Grainger sent a cross-field pass to Gilliead. He made up space and popped his cross over Flahavan, but the Reds midfielder got in the way as Sweeney tried to finish it off.

Raynes was a whisker away from converting another fine Grainger cross as United started to dominate, and a nod down from Wyke was almost finished off by Kennedy until Edwards provided the clearing touch.

The high quality deliveries continued to rain in from Grainger and Ellis was close as he threw himself at a teaser which zipped across the face of goal.

It was all about Carlisle in the closing stages as they completely dominated every passage of play, and it was another round of deserved applause which accompanied the confirmation of their second victory of the week.



United - Wyke (2, 28), Ibehre (49)

Crawley - Murphy (33)



United - Ellis (76)

Crawley - Walton (79)



Carlisle United - Gillespie, Atkinson, Raynes, Ellis, Grainger, Gilliead, Joyce, Sweeney (Thompson 74), Kennedy, Wyke (Dicker 86), Ibehre (Asamoah 63). Subs - Hanford, Hery, Archibald-Henville, McQueen.

Crawley Town - Flahavan, Walton, Bradley, Edwards, Smith (Rooney 62), Young, Harrold (Deacon 75), Emmanuel (Fenelon 62), Hancox, Yorwerth, Murphy, Subs - Barnard, Preston, Ashton, Jenkins.


Referee - Mr Graham Salisbury

Attendance - 4,641 (185 away fans)

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