A weekend of comebacks for Cliffe FC. The First Team coming back from 3-1 down to get a 3-3 draw at York St John’s University, whilst the Sunday team comeback from 1-0 down at half-time to win 3-2 and progress to the next round of the County Cup.
Malcolm Bryce writes…
Saturday 24th October 2015
York Minster Engineering League – Division One
FT: York St John’s University 3 – 3 Cliffe FC
Cliffe FC earn an away point on the road, away to York St John’s University, coming back from 3-1 down in the first half to draw 3-3 – a result the hosts will be more satisfied with than Cliffe.
As per last week, the hosts were ahead early on – the ball breaking lose on the edge of the box for the left-back to curl a effort into the far top corner – a nice goal to open scoring and give St John’s the lead, 1-0. Cliffe needed to respond and did when a long free-kick was converted via the header of Tom Hogg, that evaded the ‘keeper and restore parity at 1-1. Cliffe were required to respond once more when St John’s scored immediatley from the restart, breaking past Cliffe’s defence to square the ball across the box for a simple tap-in, 2-1. Cliffe did look the better footballing side, but the hosts certainly looked dangerous on the counter and the speed of how quickly they’d get forward once possession turned over, and when a free-kick was given away on the edge of the box found themselves further ahead – a superb left-footed free-kick that made it 3-1. Cliffe needed to show some character now or risk a collapse like last week, and Hogg looked likely to get Cliffe back into the game, Hogg hitting the post, both Ben Olsson and Scott Jackson flashing shots past the post with Jamie England coming close but the angle too narrow. It was Hogg who would win a penalty, breaking past two defenders but eventually felled as his approached the six-yard-box – penalty awarded, but England saw his spot-kick saved and the ‘keeper hold onto the rebound. The score remained 3-1 at the break, but Cliffe very much still in the game.
Second-half was all about if Cliffe could mount a comeback, whilst remaining aware of the St John’s counter threat, and that man again Hogg had the ball almost in the net but was adjudged to have fouled the ‘keeper. A set-piece from the right wing saw Cliffe score their second, an Andy Addison free-kick led to Matt Birch nodded the ball into the path of Scott Jackson who hammered the ball home – the centre-back Jackson joining his brothers with first goal for Cliffe – to make the scoreline 3-2 with around 20+ minutes left. Cliffe’s equaliser came from Hogg pouncing on a high-ball once more, gambling on the defender missing his header for Hogg to settle himself in the area and slot the ball past the ‘keeper and make it 3-3 with 10 minutes left. Man-of-the-match Hogg nearly got the winner, but saw his shot bounce past the wrong side of the post as Cliffe mounted an all-or-nothing final few minutes, but neither side could get the seventh goal and the full-time score read 3-3, points shared.
Next weekend, Cliffe FC make the trip to Tockwith for the second time in three weeks, this time in League Cup action – hoping to give a better account of themselves than the nightmare in their previous league meeting.
Sunday 25th October 2015
East Riding County FA – Vice President’s Cup – 2nd Round
FT: Cliffe FC Sunday 3 – 2 Grange AFC
Cliffe FC Sundays march on into the next round of the East Riding County FA Vice President’s Cup with a 3-2 victory over Grange AFC, coming back from 1-0 down at half-time.
It’d be fair to say that Cliffe took their opponents too lightly in the first half, knowing that Grange had lost every one of their league games so far this season – but the visitors, that made the long trip from Hull looked the better side in the opening half and moved the ball around nicely and having let Cliffe off the hook with a couple wasted chances, eventually made their pressure pay dividends when Ryan Tiplady upended the winger to give away a penalty, the spot-kick was converted and Grange were 1-0 up. Andy Kirkham did have the ball in the net but was ruled offside and the score remained 1-0 to the Hull side at the half-time break.
Cliffe needed to respond early in the second half and did so within the first 30 seconds, Tom Hogg breaking down the left-wing, crossing left-footed for Nathan Parker to score and make it 1-1 – Parker’s 10th goal of the season. As the half developed, Grange looked to tire and their level of performance dropped significantly and now looked like Cliffe would take the lead. Some last ditch defending and blocks stopped Cliffe going ahead in the tie before a towering Aidy Wood header saw him rise above the ‘keeper to head Cliffe 2-1 up. Cliffe quickly made it 3-1 minutes later, some quick thinking from Nathan Horner rushing forward for a corner, Tom Collins laying the ball into the path of Horner who curled a superb effort into the top corner for 3-1, Cliffe now looking like the team to go through for sure. Things weren’t so simple as Grange pounced on a defensive error to make it 3-2 with four or five minutes left – Cliffe managed the final minutes and with the final whistle progress to the next round with a 3-2 win, FT.
Next Sunday, Cliffe FC are back in League action – away to Knapton.