Match Report -
View from a Mariner
By Marine Website

Two excellent strikes in the second half by youngsters Michael Keegan and Will Dolan took Marine into the last 16 of the Unibond League Challenge Cup and avenged two earlier defeats by Celtic this season.

New signing from Altrincham Neil Murphy made his debut at right back with Stuart Gelling switched into midfield to join Dave Nolan making his home debut. Eddie Hussin missed out with an injury picked up at Frickley.

Marine began brightly with Neil Black upfront with Will Dolan supporting him running well and carrying on from their successful partnership at Frickley. Dolan almost scrambled one in at the far post for Marine, but there was a setback after 20 minutes when Nolan went off with a cut close to his eye to be replaced by reserve captain Paul Proctor.

Marine had to thank Billy Stewart for keeping them level when after several shots on goal he dived at Chris Denham's feet to block a shot as the Stalybridge striker closed on his fourth goal this season against Marine.

The home side took control in the second half with Paul Culshaw again looking comfortable at the back though he and Murphy were booked for rash tackles. Keegan as at Frickley had been much more involved in the game and he broke the deadlock on 70 minutes when he controlled a clearance outside the box and hit a tremendous shot past Craig Dootson in the Stalybridge goal.

Black was having another excellent game and with Dolan buzzing just behind him there were a lot of problems for the Stalybridge defence. Dolan's persistence eventually paid off in the 84th minute when he turned well in the box and curled a cracker of a shot past Dootson.

All in all a very pleasing performance for Marine with still so many playrs missing. Stewart's confident play spreads to the defence and if Keegan can keep up this form Marine may just have found the midfield drive they have been missing.

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