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MATCH REPORT: United 2 - 2 Salford

Report from the Saturday afternoon home game

24 August 2019

United's busy schedule continued with a home game against League Two new boys Salford City on Saturday afternoon.

Manager Steven Pressley made two changes to the starting line up from Tuesday night with Hallam Hope and Olufela Olomola called up to replace Harry McKirdy and Ryan Loft.

A tweak to the formation was also made with Jack Bridge and Mike Jones sitting just behind a midfield three of Nathan Thomas, Stefan Scougall and Hope, with Olomola leading the line.

United looked bright from the off and they attacked down the right with Thomas when he took a pass from Olomola. He was tackled as he worked his way into the box, but Bridge picked up the loose ball and set off on a run. Smith appeared to chop him down, but the referee waved play on.

The Blues came again when Scougall nicked possession deep inside the Salford half. He beat his man and fed it to Olomola, and the striker did well to hold off a challenge before going for goal. Neal was well beaten but the shot somehow crept past the upright.

More good work from Bridge gave him half a yard outside the area but he opted for an early shot, which Neal watched all the way. But the hosts got the goal their enterprising play deserved on seven minutes when Thomas dropped a shoulder before curling a beauty of a cross into the mix. Olomola jumped gracefully and Neal had no chance as a superb header nestled sweetly in the bottom corner at the Waterworks End.

Salford came in search of a reply and Jones rattled the bar with a fierce strike from distance. The ball spun high into the sky and Webster had to block twice as Touray tried to find a way through.

The Ammies committed forward and a curled cross from Touray caused problems as Beesley arrived late in the box. Collin was relieved to see the glanced header drop wide as it flashed across the face of his goal.

Scougall had an effort blocked, and Thomas poked one wide, as United remained an attacking threat, and Hope showed excellent control when he took a 40-yard crossfield pass on his thigh. He opted to shoot early and Wiseman closed it down.

The Cumbrians were a whisker away from a second goal of the day when Olomola spread the play to Iredale. He brought Hope into it, and he shielded and waited patiently as Thomas moved to lose his marker. The wide man unleashed a 19-yard grasscutter, as it rolled his way, and he was ready to celebrate until it crashed into the side netting.

It became end-to-end and both Dieseruvwe and Jones were close with headers from corners for the visitors, but they were well defended as Knight-Percival and Webster stood their ground.

The Salford equaliser came from nowhere as the keeper passed the ball out to Touray, who was in plenty of space on the halfway line. His long, deep cross was nodded back into the penalty area by Wiseman, who had ghosted his way into the box, and Emmanuel Dieseruvwe used strength to muscle his way onto the ball on the penalty spot. He left Collin with no chance with a thundering header which buzzed into the top corner.

It got worse for the hosts five minutes later when another high, lobbed ball fell towards the far post. Beesley and Webster tussled as they tried to make it their own, and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot as the pair tumbled to the floor. Danny Whitehead aimed the spot kick low to Collin's right, and the keeper was frustrated when a strong hand wasn't quite enough to prevent it from going over the line.

A good moment went begging for the Cumbrians when Bridge ran forward with the ball at his feet. His cut back went behind Olomola and Maynard was able to clear before Hope could spring forward.

Parity was restored just before the break when Elliott pinged a pass towards Scougall. He cleverly dummied it, and Olomola took a touch to create space for a shot. Neal had to dive long to parry that, and Scougall got the reward for continuing his run when he was able to nod the rebound into the empty net.

A corner in time added on for the half from Bridge was sent back into the area by Knight-Percival, and the Webster follow up was nodded off the line by Dieseruvwe. The ball pinged around and it was eventually stabbed behind for another corner. Knight-Percival repeated his movement, but his firm volley struck Thomas and the moment was gone.

The dangerous Touray whipped a rapser of a cross across the face of goal with seconds on the second half clock, but Dieseruvwe was on his heels and he watched in disbelief as it flashed in front of him before running away to safety.

Home spirits were raised when Stefan Scougall crunched his way through two challenges to come away with the ball. He spread it to Thomas, but his shot on the run was blocked almost as soon as it left his boot.

A similar move brought another corner as Thomas once more overlapped with Scougall having sparked the attack. A free kick was given to the visitors as Olomola battled with Neal for the right to get to the dipping cross.

United missed an open goal opportunity when they broke in numbers, with Scougall once the more the initial architect. Thomas took over, and he left Piergianni in his wake as he showed a burst of pace and a clean pair of heels. Hope was unmarked, just seven yards out, and it was put on a plate as Thomas fed it into his path. A scuffed shot took the chance wide when it looked easier to score.

Another superb chance to retake the lead was spurned in the next attack when Bridge spotted Scougall onside and unmarked in the Salford half. He sprinted forward with just Neal to beat, but he opted to shoot from 20-yards and he got his bearings wrong as he sent his toe poke well past the post.

Carlisle had to take care at the other end when Jones showed skill to work his way into the area. A succession of drag backs and an elaborate spin brought cheers from the away support, but groans followed when Dieseruvwe sent a poor lob onto the roof of the net.

United’s catalogue of glaring misses found another addition and it was Newcastle loanee Elias Sorensen who was left with his head in his hands, with ten minutes left to play, when a mesmerising run from Thomas brought a cheeky cross to the back post. The teenage striker was unmarked but he somehow sent his volley wide as he struggled to find the body shape which would allow him to wrap his boot round the ball.

Collin was needed to save from Rooney late in the day, and it was fantastic stuff as the keeper somehow dealt with a crunching close range header from the substitute. 

The game became tight, and United will have plenty to ponder when they think about the second half chances which could and probably should have earned them all three points.



Carlisle United - Olomola (7), Scougall (43)

Salford City - Dieseruvwe (28), Whitehead (33 pen)



Salford City - Wiseman (2)



Carlisle United - Collin (c) (gk), Elliott, Webster, Knight-Percival, Iredale (Mellish 79), Scougall, Jones, Bridge, Thomas, Olomola (Sorensen 59), Hope (Loft 67). Subs - Gray, Carroll, McKirdy, Branthwaite.

Salford City - Neal (gk), Wiseman, Touray, Piergianni, Maynard (Threlkeld 46), Whitehead (Walker 81), Dieseruvwe, Pond (c), Smith (Rooney 60), Jones, Beesley. Subs - Letheren (gk), Jones, Gaffney, Doyle.


Match officials

Referee – Paul Marsden
Assistant Referee 1 –
Matthew Jones
Assistant Referee 2 –
Daniel Woodward
Fourth Official –
Nathaneal Cox 


Attendance - 4,806 (340 away fans)

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