Workington Reds 5 City of Liverpool 2

Workington Reds finally got their season up and running with a comfortable victory over their Merseyside visitors.

Danny Grainger’s men had been close to winning all three of their drawn games, but there was no denying them this time as much of their frustration was taken out.

City of Liverpool had lost both their previous games and despite workmanlike effort against a superior side at Borough Park it proved one loss too many as manager Craig Robinson parted company afterwards.

Workington – playing in a new all-claret strip – had dominated from the start and the one setback was really the fact that the visitors equalised only two minutes after going behind.

Goalkeeper Andrew Marshall had spilled the first cross of the game from the eager Liam Brockbank, who was to emerge as a key figure with a hand in all three opening goals.

On that early occasion there was nobody around to take advantage of the keeper’s fumble.

But on 12 minutes Reds capitalised. Sam Smith released the left-back with a fine ball and this time his pull-back was thumped home by Ruben Jerome.

It was something of a shock, however, when City got the chance to draw level from the penalty spot two minutes later.

A surging run from Jordan Barrow was followed by a perfect through ball for Jamie McDonald to get in on goal. His shot was parried by Jim Atkinson but as both men instinctively went after the loose ball the home keeper brought down the attacker.

A thundering finish from Nathan Burke gave Atkinson no chance of redeeming himself.

Heroics from Marshall then kept the sides level. Jerome glided to the by-line and pulled back the perfect ball for Scott Allison to thump in from eight yards. Marshall blocked with his left foot and when the ball rebounded to Allison, this time his shot was kept out by Marshall’s right foot.

Workington’s pressure told on 25 minutes as a searching ball from Brad Hubbold released Brockbank down the left and after skipping past the first defender he then had Marshall racing towards him.

Brockbank was able to squeeze a shot past him but the ball seemed to take an age to roll towards goal and then over the line before a defender could get back.

It was 2-1 at the break for the Reds/Clarets but they needed a two-goal cushion and got it soon after the resumption. Again Brockbank was the provider with a curling cross which gave Jerome a simple finish.

Although the lively Jack Hazelhurst struck the bar at 3-1, Workington continued to look good for more goals and in fact there were two more to come.

The first on 66 minutes was a beauty from 17-year-old Carl Lightfoot just a few minutes after his arrival. Released by a clever through ball from Hubbold he spotted Marshall off his line and a delightful chip found the net.

Louis Potts then grabbed his first goal for the club shortly after joining the action with a low cross-shot into the far corner.

The Liverpool visitors sneaked a second goal five minutes from the end when substitute John McGrath got away to score.

Workington: Atkinson, Kelly (Atkinson 75), Brockbank, Wordsworth, Smith, Hubbold, Holt, Carroll (Lightfoot 63), Jerome, Allison, Bowman (Potts 69). Subs (not used): Clarke, Robertson.

Goals: Jerome (12, 51), Brockbank (25), Lightfoot (66), Potts (71).

Referee: Ian Gittens

Crowd: 393

Star man: Liam Brockbank