Youngsters go close at Bury
Nathan Rooney’s U18’s took on league leaders Bury this weekend at Carrington training ground. Despite a battling and determined performance, 10-man Fleetwood were eventually beaten 2-1.
Both sides endured a slow start to the game with the first real chance of note not coming until the 34th minute, Bury striking the crossbar with a curling effort from just outside the box. Fleetwood should have opened the scoring shortly after, were it not for a fantastic piece of goalkeeping from the Bury stopper, Gerard Garner finding space inside the box and his deflected effort kept out by a great reaction save, Dan Mooney’s follow up also suffered the same fate, a great double stop, gaining applause from both sets of spectators.
Nathan Rooney would have been pleased with the first half showing of his young troops against a side who had only conceded one goal in their opening three league fixtures.
The second half began frustratingly for Fleetwood; a dubious penalty decision, which left players of both sides mystified, was gifted to Bury. Nevertheless, the penalty was converted past Billy Crellin and Fleetwood now trailed 1-0.
Bury grabbed a second only eight minutes later, pouncing on some poor Fleetwood defending before beating Crellin at his near post.
Nathan Rooney looked for a reaction from his players and introduced young striker Connor Finlayson into the game, a brilliantly timed impact substitution from Rooney as Finlayson pounced on a poor back-pass before squaring the ball to Gerard Garner to slot into the bottom corner of the goal and reduce the deficit.
Rooney’s side were now firmly in the ascendancy and were hunting a second goal, this was until chaos ensued on the pitch. The already booked Lewis Shorrock was manhandled to the floor, his reaction to the incident sparked a row with both sets of players and was subsequently shown a second yellow card.
Unfortunately for Fleetwood, this stemmed the flow of momentum and made their task difficult. Bury, to their credit managed the game well and were happy to hear the final whistle, granting them a 2-1 victory and maintaining their 100% start to the league campaign.
Nathan Rooney spoke of his pride in the team’s performance; the game proved a real test of character for our boys against a strong Bury side, having gone 2-0 down to two soft goals, the reaction was excellent. We looked a threat, and after getting the goal back, we looked like we would push on and get something from the game.