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Cleethorpes Town 0
1 Dunston
Finnigan (61')

REPORT | Cleethorpes 0 Dunston UTS 1

Dunston strengthened their hopes of reaching the Northern Premier League East Division play-offs with a battling 1-0 away win in Lincolnshire.

Carl Finnigan scored his fourth goal in three games just after the hour-mark to see Dunston record back-to-back wins and move back into the play-off positions.

It was an unchanged XI from our last game away at Ossett United two weeks ago with Carl Finnigan and Michael Fowler leading the line upfront. 

The chances in the first half came few and far between as both sides struggled to gain control of the game. 

Despite the scrappy start, Michael Fowler had the ball in the back of the net with 10 minutes played. A looping effort from the edge of the box beat the former Grimsby Town shot-stopper James McKeown however, the flag was raised by the assistant for an offside in the build-up.

Just five minutes later, Richard Coulson also came close as he found some space down the left and skewed a shot just wide past the far post. 

Another chance fell to Dunston with 30 minutes played. This time, it was a Phil Turnbull free kick which was whipped into the box. The ball ricocheted off multiple players before Cleethorpes were able to scramble the ball to safety.

The hosts began to settle as the half wore on and they almost took the lead when Jon Oglesby went one-on-one with James Anderson, only for a last ditch tackle from Terry Galbraith to steer the ball out for a corner.

Jack McMenemy then had a half-chance minutes later with a long distance shot comfortably saved by James Anderson. McMenemy continued to cause problems and he also went one-on-one with Anderson however, Galbraith was there again to slide in at the last second to deny a certain goal.

Into the second half and Dunston began to grab a firm grip of the game and were deservingly rewarded on 61 minutes.

A low Phil Turnbull corner was flicked towards the 6-yard box by Will Jenkins where Finnigan was waiting to head the ball into the top corner. A simply sublime set-piece move straight off the training ground.

Less than a minute after breaking the deadlock, Coulson could have doubled Dunston’s advantage, only for James McKeown to claw the ball away with a top quality save.

As the half progressed, chances for both sides were at a bare minimum as Dunston controlled the game and frustrated the hosts in the progress.

With just two minutes left before stoppage time, Dunston hearts were forced to skip a beat as it looked like the Owls had found a late equaliser.

A deep out-swinging cross from the left was scrambled over the line by second half substitute Tom Jamieson. To the relief of Dunston and the travelling supporters, the referee had blew for a foul on James Anderson before the ball had crossed the line.

Cleethorpes Town continued to push men forwards, with goalkeeper McKeown coming up for a long throw-in in the dying seconds of the game. Ultimately, the battling defence was able to see the game out and record a huge victory on the road.

A win that sees us move into the play-offs and leapfrog today’s hosts.

Report by Callum Pattison 

Published Saturday 28th January 2023