Match Report -
Red Card Changes Game
By Debbie Taylor

A harsh red card changed the final of the Manchester Premier Cup completely, Mossley looked lively all game, but Celtic couldn’t get a sniff after Jack Higgins saw red.

Mossley have won the Manchester Premier Cup four times out of the last five ahead of the game and started brightly, scoring with their first attack as Mike Fish came in unmarked at the back post to side foot in a low cross that made the Celtic defence look like it was still in the tunnel.

Celtic came back at Mossley, and played some nice football, Jack Higgins went close twice from set-pieces whilst at the other end Mike Fish tried to handle the ball into a net from a corner, before some good build-up play saw Celtic deservedly equalise. Sustained pressure culminated with Steve Tames pushing the ball out to Adam Farrell who smashed the ball low and hard from twenty-yards. Had Liam Flynn had time to move, catching the ball would have broken his wrist.

On the half hour, with the Celtic box packed for a set-piece, Andy Keogh’s drive into the box saw Jack Higgins throw himself in front of the ball, his hands were across his chest and the ball struck his elbow. Higgins couldn’t believe it when he was shown the first red card of his career. Penalty yes, red card absolutely not; especially as the ball ended up in the back of the net, the penalty converted by Kyle McGonagall.

It was a container job until half time for Celtic, though Tom Pratt could have added to the misery with his angled lobbed ball that came back off the bar.

Celtic looked like they had a plan for the second half, with very little action until twenty minutes in, when a simple ball to the penalty spot saw Mike Fish with the time and space to control and curl a shot into the top corner. That killed the game completely. Celtic were left looking aimless, and the game as cold as the weather until the final whistle when Celtic failed for the sixth time to win a final.

1Flynn, Liam  
2McDonnell, Danny  > 61
3Bennet, John  
4Kay, Scott  
5Dean, Tom  
6McGonnigle, Kyle  
7Fish, Mike  
8Abadaki, Godwin  
9Keogh, Andy  
10Pratt, Tom  
11Carroll, Dave  > 73
12Baker, Liam  
14Firzgerald, Andy  < 61
15Howell, Sam  < 77
16Smart, Dave  < 73
17Jones, Will  
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