A second defeat at Walton Casuals in eight days on Tuesday evening meant four defeats on the trot for Paul Hughes’ side as United’s blip in form continues into December.
From a spectators perspective the game was not an easy watch due to the poor floodlighting at the Xcel Sports Hub however on the pitch it was the same for both sides and could not be used as an excuse for the amount of passes that went astray from the visitors, especially in the first half.
United did however start fairly well, creating an opening in just the sixth minute the returning Omar Rowe lofted a pass forwards, Walton ‘keeper Jacob Adams came out of his box to attempt a clearance in a challenge with Kadell Daniel and as the ball dropped to Moses Emmanuel the stopper did well to block the strikers effort with his body and the danger was cleared.
As we moved past the ten minute mark Adams claimed a brace of standard “saves”, gathering low shots from range from both Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick and Daniel.
A first opening for the home side came in the 17th minute, a forward pass was chested down by Adam Liddle to former United winger Rohdell Gordon who took a touch inside before shooting low but Tyla Dickinson produced a routine saw low down to deny him.
Minutes later however a moment of inattentiveness at the back for United saw the home side take the lead. A free-kick from halfway was played up the right side, Liddle collected the ball and before Jack Williams could make a challenge the nippy striker had turned and crossed the ball into the six yard box and central defender Tarik Moore-Azille was on hand to head home from close range.
Five minutes later the hosts doubled their advantage as Liddle was again fed the ball in the right-hand channel, this time he advanced into the United box and drilled a low shot past Dickinson to put Casuals 2-0 ahead with just 24 minutes played.
Two minutes later Emmanuel pulled the ball back nicely to Amos Nasha but his effort from just outside the area, although well struck, was gathered cleanly by Adams and the rest of the half fizzled out to nothing with not a single noteworthy chance for either side hitting the notebook.
A double change at the break for United saw Francis Amartey and Jordan Norville-Williams come into the fray in place of Hippolyte-Patrick and Williams however before they had time to settle into the game the home side almost had a third when a 20 yard free-kick was driven past the wall with Dickinson reacting quickly to push the effort wide.
At the other end minutes later Emmanuel collected and controlled a pass inside the left corner of the hosts area before turning past Zac Chislett only for his shot at goal to be well defended and the ball was played clear without causing any trouble for Adams.
With United still not really looking like pulling themselves back into the game, the home side struck again with just over 20 minutes remaining when Liddle was on hand to head home a left wing centre from Gordon.
At 3-0 it was almost as if the visitors had been awoken as United started to find some forwards motion of their own finally as Rowe fed the ball through to Emmanuel who tried to chip Adams from just outside the box but his effort curled away and wide of the target.
United finally got on the scoresheet in the 77th minute, Amartey worked his way forwards before finding Daniel inside the Casuals area on the right, he drifted past former United man Tom Bird before planting a shot across Adams into the far corner to reduce the deficit to two.
Two minutes later Adams denied Daniel a second after good approach play from Nasha and Amartey, Amartey was to turn provider once again in the second minute of added time as he raced away on the left before sending over a perfect cross that Emmanuel headed home unchallenged from close range.
What would have capped a fine come back almost arrived in the seventh minute of stoppage time but Daniel’s shot was just too high and the game closed out on a fourth consecutive defeat for United who will need to start to recover their form as we travel “abroad” on Saturday with a trip to Wales to face Merthyr Town.
Report by Kevin Watts.
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