Renwick Self-Destruct Against Sandymount

2 Dec

Renwick threw away a two goal lead as they lost 4-3 in the latest round of Belfast Superleague matches. The fixture against Sandymount had been scheduled to take place at Ormeau Park but like the previousencounter between these two teams the venue was changed on the morning of the match due to the weather. Michael Hawthorne and Chris Carson were not available and the location of Peoples was a mystery but Renwick continued to play a 4-5-1/4-3-3 system.

Both sides were hesitant to stamp their authority on the game but it was the Elmwood team who snatched a 1-0 lead as Buchanan’s flick gave Aicken the opportunity to slot home the first goal of the game. Renwick now began to stamp their authority on the game as Hanna and Devenny looked assured at centre-back whilst Ian, Phil and the Cromies played some nice football in the opponents’ half. Birthday-boy Ali McCollum and Peter Fallows functioned effectively as enforcers in the centre of the park with fullbacks Campbell and McKelvey looking solid as Sandymount struggled to build any attacks. Renwick piled on the pressure following the first goal and Aicken scored a second from a precise penalty after being scythed down in the box. Only some heroic defending prevented Cromie R making it a three goal lead and a Renwick corner was cleared off the line. Sandymount were restricted to very few chances and McCullough only had one notable save to make before half-time.

Phil races through

And put Renwick in the lead

At the break Renwick were confident of their ability to consign Sandymount to their 5th league defeat. McCullough rang the changes replacing Cromie R and Richard McK with Michael Mitchell and Richard Mark. Sandymount pulled one back with a long-range effort which wrong-footed the back-peddaling McCullough and dipped below him to the left. At this Renwick seemed to panic. A deathly silence came across the pitch and the team that had dominated the first half seemed unable to keep possession. Only a few minutes later the ball fell to a Sandymount striker in the box, his trickling shot evaded the unsighted keeper and Renwick’s two goal lead had evaporated. The Superleague newbies were clearly encouraged whilst Renwick looked close to despair. Disappointment descended into farce as McCullough called to his defence to leave the ball only for the striker to beat the keeper and poke the ball home.

Renwick were is disarray but were encouraged by the unexpected apparance of Gavin Surprisewell. He replace Fallows in the middle as the men in black desperately sought a way back into the game. A stunning 25 yard strike from Joel Cromie brought the teams level and hope flickered that Renwick might still secure the desperately needed points. Gavin switched with Adam in the hope that the size of the Far-Eastern striker could increase Renwick’s goalscoring threat. He did but only moments later Devenney tangled with a Sandymount centre-back. Cromie Ref took an dim view of the altercation that followed leaving both sides with ten men and Adam with the undesirable record of being the first ever Renwick player to be sent off.


The photo-evidence lays the finger of blame with the Sandymount centre-back

It was the last action for both players

The game was now incredibly stretched but it was Sandymount who took advatage of the extra space. McCullough came for a looping cross from their right and in David James-style waved goodbye to a point as the ball was bundled in. Losing to Sandymount after such a strong first half performance will be a bitter pill to swallow. Renwick are not used to having less points than matches played leading Director of Football Morrison into the unusual situation of publicly reiterating the board’s position of support for the manager. Post-match McCullough claimed that “We always knew this season was going to be tough. This is a transitional period for the club but I have every faith in the ability of our young squad to turn this season around and build a promising platform for next year.”

Man of the Match Award

Shared between Renwick’s two goal-scorers Joel Cromie and Phil Aicken. The effort from both players was excellent throughout and both constantly looked like a threat to the opposition’s goal.

Renwick: McCullough, Campbell, Devenney, Hanna, McKelvey, McCollum, Fallows, Buchanan, Cromie J, Cromie R, Aicken Subs: Mark (McKelvey 45), Mitchell (Cromie 45), Blackwell (Fallows 65)


One Response to “Renwick Self-Destruct Against Sandymount”

  1. Peter December 2, 2010 at 4:17 pm #

    McCullough said that?? Or Hodgson?!

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