Lancaster City 4 - 2 Bamber Bridge
LANCASTER CITY registered their first league win of the season on Tuesday night coming out on top in a six-goal thriller at home to Bamber Bridge.
It was a night for the forwards as Tom Kilifin notched a brace and strike partners Dave Swarbrick and Rodrigo Branco picked up one apiece.
Defensively the Dolly Blues were a little ragged but on the whole they had more bite and passion in the middle with the introduction of Gavin Clark and Michael Stringfellow and the aforementioned attacking trio will give anyone problems.
City fell behind on just six minutes as Alistair Waddecar was allowed to coast down the left and cross for Darren Green to tap in unmarked from six yards.
It was one hell of an end-to-end first 45 with City looking the more dangerous, particularly when the ball found the feet of Branco.
Kilifin struck back for the Dolly Blues in terrific fashion, latching on to a Clark through ball he advanced into the box and finished brilliantly.
The visitors second was sloppy in the extreme, chaotic defending in the box from a free-kick saw the ball ping across to Matty Kay at the back post to smash home; it was the third bite at the cherry inside the box for the visitors and City should have done better.
An excellent strike from Swarbrick levelled things again for the Dolly Blues. After good determined work down the left from Ryan Elderton the ball fell to the former Barrow man who drilled a right-footed half volley off the post and in.
City edged into the lead ten minutes before the break, Stringfellow set Branco through on goal but the ball rebounded off him and dropped into the path of Kilifin who lobbed it into the net.
The second half was a little flat but City can be pleased with their defensive determination as they hung on to their lead by a thread and created the more telling chances to try and pull further ahead.
Branco had a couple of chances to register before he finally scored on 85 minutes, he shot wide inside the box before hitting the bar following good work from Max Rothwell, former Kendal Town striker Kilifin saw his follow-up shot saved.
Swarbrick also drilled a shot just wide before the flying Brazilian finally netted with a low shot under the ‘keeper from ten yards.
In many ways after the recent turmoil surrounding the management of the club this was a must-win game for City and there is certainly room for improvement but the three points provides a modicum of relief with the decent attacking performance a happy bonus.
A simpler 4-4-2 formation offered not only more attacking threat but a second half solidity that has been missed in recent weeks.
City welcome Garforth Town on Saturday before taking a week’s break as their scheduled opponents compete in cup action.
Lancaster City: McDonald 6, Parkinson 6 (Hudson 78), Elderton 6, Marshall 6, Gregson 6, Stringfellow 7, Clark 7 (Wilson 86), Swarbrick 7, Branco 7, Kilifin 7, Dodwell 6 (Rothwell 60). Subs not used: Hubbold, Wheeler
Bamber Bridge: Dove, Bonaminio, Marlow, Atherton, Mahoney D, Mahoney M (Settle 58), Reid (Reynolds 58), Green L, Green D, Kay (Bell 78), Waddecar
Referee: Kevin Moraine
Star man: Gavin Clark - A much-needed introduction of grit into the middle and can pick a pass too