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MATCH REPORT: United 0 - 3 Plymouth

Report from the Saturday afternoon home game

11 January 2020

It was back to league action for United on Saturday afternoon as they welcomed Plymouth Argyle to Brunton Park for what was the longest trip of the season for the visitors.

United were on a run of just two defeats in their previous nine outings and with a solid and eye-catching away performance against Cardiff City still fresh in the memory.

Boss Chris Beech stuck with the same starting eleven from that FA Cup encounter, with new arrival Max Hunt named on the bench just 24-hours after putting pen-to-paper on an 18-month deal.

The weather conditions were horrendous, with the county battered by wind and rain, and it took a while for the game to settle into a rhythm as both sets of players came to terms with it.

It was Carlisle who created the first chance of the day when Hope controlled a high ball over the top inside the area. His touch brought Nathan Thomas into play, and Palmer had to dive low to save the shot which came from the edge of the box. 

The Pilgrims probed at the Carlisle box on 10 minutes as they moved the ball with neat, one-touch passes. The defence refused to buckle and the eventual punt from Bakinson was blocked and easily cleared.

Collin was needed moments later when Jephcott went on a charge from deep. He used Moore for the one-two and that opened things up for a shot. He tried to place it but Collin got across to make an excellent save.

A winding run from Mayor was shadowed by Elliot Watt, making his home debut, and the midfielder's attentions were much-needed as he slid in to make a timely challenge just as the trigger was about to be pulled.

The Cumbrians tested the away back line with crosses, and Plymouth did the same as the pace of the game picked up.

Referee Martin Coy ignored appeals for a penalty on 20 minutes, when Jephcott went down inside the area, and Wootton had to head clear when the hosts broke with Hope set to beat the offside trap.

Half chances and nearly moments came at both ends, with neither target or keeper truly troubled through what was a tight period of the game. But the Blues were undone just after the half-hour when Moore overlapped on the right flank. His fizzed delivery was met by Luke Jephcott who rattled it home from close range.

Carlisle looked for an immediate response and McKirdy had three defenders around him as he put his head down and angled for the area. He let one fly on the run but it was always heading wide.

A wild shot from George Cooper flew into the Warwick when he was pushed wide by Hayden, after Moore and Jephcott had moved the ball quickly, and Collin had to parry from a fierce strike from Sarcevic when the striker found the ball at his feet just 10-yards out. The follow up from Moore was diverted behind when Webster lunged in to get his body in the way.

Webster blocked again when George Cooper put his laces through another thunderbolt just before the break, and that sparked a home attack which took Mike Jones onto the right flank. He dropped a shoulder and chopped at the ball but his effort curled away from the bottom corner.

Stefan Scougall replaced Jack Bridge for the start of the second half and he was involved immediately as he played his part in a determined attack. It nearly opened up for Hope as Hayden crossed, and Plymouth had to scramble to get it clear as blue shirts converged.

But it was the green shirts who celebrated on 49 minutes when Moore found space before slotting a precise pass through to Jephcott. He doubled his account for the day as he crunched an unstoppable effort into the net.

A low ball across the face of goal from Edwards looked inviting for the away side, but Collin was able to allow it to pass by as the strikers stayed on their heels.

A rasping low drive from Mike Jones looked to have brought the hosts right back into it on the hour mark, but Palmer was down to parry as he saw it late. Winger Harry McKirdy had done the leg work to make the opening, and Jones was disappointed to see the effort run to safety.

Gethin Jones did well to beat his man and deliver as the Blues picked up the pace once again, but Palmer plucked the cross out of the sky before Hope could pounce. A volley from McKirdy spun inside the area moments later, and Hope was a whisker away once again from applying a touch when Jones put another cross in.

It was good from United and Hope must have felt it wasn't his day as he wound up another piledriver when Loft poked the ball his way. A block from Wootton took it high into the stands.

Hope then sprinted clear to send the ball low for Loft to chase, but the assistant referee waved for a foul as Carlisle's forward clashed with the advancing keeper.

Plymouth substitute Ryan Hardie almost scored with his first touch of the game as he got across his man to clip a delivery from Edwards at the nets. Collin saved it, and Hardie was frustrated as he found the post with a hurried follow up.

The Pilgrims made the points secure with 15 minutes left to play when debut boy Hardie carried the ball forward on the break. He bided his time and stroked a powerful punt past Collin.

Loft headed over on the stretch as Carlisle kept going, and a good opportunity was missed when McKirdy got on the end of a cross from the right as it skipped awkwardly off the surface. His header had Palmer beaten but it was hooked over the bar before it could be helped over the line.

Aaron Hayden was sent off for a second reckless challenge in time added on, and United were left to lick their woulds after a difficult day at the office.



Plymouth Argyle - Jephcott (32, 49), Hardie (75)



Carlisle United - Hayden (84 & 90 - sent off)

Plymouth Argyle - Bakinson (74)



Carlisle United - Collin (gk)(c), Hayden, Webster, Mellish, G Jones, McKirdy, M Jones, Watt, Bridge (Scougall 46), Thomas (Loft 52), Hope. Subs - Gray (gk), Iredale, Charters, Olomola, Hunt.

Plymouth Argyle - Palmer (gk), Sawyer (c), Wootton, Canavan, Sarcevic (J Grant 79), Edwards (Riley 88), Mayor, Bakinson, Moore, Jephcott, G Cooper (Hardie 71). Subs - M Cooper (gk), C Grant, Lolos, Randell.


Match officials

Referee - Martin Coy
Assistant Referee 1 - Paul Newhouse
Assistant Referee 2 - Gary Hilton
Fourth Official - Chris Isherwood


Attendance - 4,212 (567 away fans)

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