Such a scoreline may indicate a very one-sided game, but the simple difference between the two teams was that while Hunslet took their chances, Rangers, despite shading the possession statistic, did not.
On a sunny afternoon, pandemic issues were put on hold for ninety minutes, and a little slice of normality in the form of local football took centre stage at The Hunslet Club.
Deighton attacked first, and a flicked pass by Liam Dean freed Brad Spencer. Running into the left-hand side of Hunslet’s area, he pulled the ball back, but his shot clipped off a defender, and the keeper was able to get down at his near post and save.
As expected after such a long time away from the beautiful game, both teams struggled to gain fluidity in their play, and misplaced passes and mistimed tackles came mainly to the fore.
The home side nearly scored after Mitch Moore’s clearance was charged down by the striker. Covering, however, was Dan Flynn, who hooked the ball to safety as it bounced towards the goal.
With gaps appearing all over the pitch, Stevie Mann received a pass just over the halfway line. Finding his options limited, he went on a weaving run and bent his shot just wide of the post.
Rangers were cursing the crossbar after 17 minutes, as Mike McCartney’s lofted shot, following a good piece of combination play by Rich Jenner and Mann, beat the keeper, but struck the frame of the goal and bounced straight down before coming back into the six-yard box.
Deighton was having the better of the play, and Dean’s snapshot was collected without fuss by the keeper. Minutes later, Mann twisted his way into the area, but his shot was straight at Hunslet’s custodian.
A superb counter-attack at speed by Hunslet brought the opening goal after 23 minutes. A pass that split Deighton's defence was moved to the right of the area, and despite Moore saving the initial shot, he was unable to stop the rebound from being drilled under him.
Moore was called into action again when he stood tall to pull off an excellent one-on-one save after the impressive Hunslet striker had burst free and threatened to double their lead.
Upping the pressure again, Rangers delivered a series of dangerous-looking crosses, but both McCartney and Sean Dawson were unable to find the target, with their shots flying wide.
With 49 minutes on the clock, Hunslet scored again after a corner wasn’t fully cleared, and a green-shirted player poked home from close range.
Following a header by Dawson, which went wide, Hunslet worked the ball back into Deighton’s area, and a shot just cleared Moore’s crossbar.
The introduction of Jack Holliday gave Rangers attacking options down the right-wing, and it was his jinking run and cross that evaded several players before trickling towards the back post. However, no Deighton player had gambled, and Hunslet cleared the danger.
The victory for the home side was sealed in the 55th minute after they broke quickly, passed around Moore, and scored from a couple of yards out.
With instructions to keep a clean sheet echoing around the ground, Rangers spoilt that idea when Mann, who had forced Hunslet’s keeper into making a good save, got to the loose ball first and picked out Dean, who slammed home from four yards.
Rangers looked the more dangerous again, and a ball over the defence looked to pick out Phil Turner, who was unable to get a connection. Minutes later, a sheepish looking Hunslet keeper was gratefully clutching the ball after misjudging the original bounce and nearly deflecting it into his own net!
With tiredness playing its part as the clock moved into the final minutes, it was Hunslet who looked the more likely to score, and they did in the 82nd minute after a corner found its way to the back post and, despite the original header being blocked, the rebound fell to the same player, and this time he blasted it high into the roof of the net.
Rangers conjured up one final effort, and a low cross by McCartney from the right-wing was shot over by Mann, who was stretching to reach it.
Report by KDRAFC Media
Final score: Hunslet Club Res 4 v 1 Kirk Deighton Rangers Reserves
Verdict: A useful run out for both teams, and it was good to see football again. The score was largely irrelevant, but there will be bits that will, in equal measures, please and disappoint Kris and his coaching team. The real test starts again on the 10th when they travel to play Brighouse Sports Club FC in the league.
Squad: Mitch Moore, Sam Murphy, Ben Challenger, Mike Tasker, Rich Jenner, Mike McCartney, Dan Flynn, Stevie Mann, Liam Dean, Brad Spencer, Phil Turner, Sean Dawson, Jack Barker, Jack Holliday, John-Paul Williams
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