Goals from Sean Doyle and Dean Leece sealed a 2-0 victory for The Ravens over Wythenshawe to kickstart their new season in the Northwest Counties Football League Premier Division.
The game was a scrappy affair from the start and the home side did well to see out some early pressure from the visitors. The Manchester club were a completely different side to the team that came to the Bowl in April, but it didn’t stop them from almost taking the lead inside the first 10 minutes as a dangerous freekick found the head of defender Omorogbe, but his effort went inches over the crossbar.
It took FC Isle of Man 30 minutes to register their first shot on target, but after some periods of domination, it was no surprise when the Bowl erupted, cheering as Doyle opened the scoring. The goal came from Dean Pinnington who had been running the defenders ragged all game on that right-hand side but on this occasion, his playmaking shone through as he twisted the hapless right back inside to out and then floated a cross to the far post which found Mikey Williams who sent the ball back across the keeper to Doyle to head home from a yard out.
That goal seemed to take the fizz out of the game and soon enough the referee blew the whistle to end the first half.
The home side came out firing and nearly doubled their lead after a through ball found Luke Murray as he drove into the penalty box, but his effort could not trouble the keeper.
In the 68th minute, the match saw a controversial moment as Pinnington was shown a debateable second yellow for a scuffle off the pitch, but any suggestions the red card would help the away side were thrown out the window as the crowd seemed to rattle the visitors and after some well-worked substitutions we scored our second in the 80th minute.
A Ravens’ counterattack saw Williams successfully ride a few challenges and Wythenshawe could not clear his pass as the ball fell to substitute Leece who took one look at the goal and rocketed home into the bottom right-hand corner.
The game finished 2-0 to FC Isle of Man
Man of the Match: Alex Maitland