A Tuesday night derby against local rivals City of Liverpool FC under the lights of the IP Truck Parts Stadium should have been an occasion that had the stands of Hope Street crowded with fans. As it was, as local COVID-19 restrictions took hold, the stands were empty for a game which served up a contest that deserved to have many more people witness it.
Whether or not Cables were affected by the empty ground or a change in formation in the first half was unclear, but the Pesky Bulls struggled to get a grip of the game in the opening half. The visitors were much the better side in the opening 45 minutes and took a deserved lead on 19 minutes through their captain James McCartan. A corner from the right saw McCartan rise at the back post to powerfully head the ball back across Mitch Allen and into the Cables net.
The visitors created three or four other clear opportunities to score before half time but somehow Cables went into the interval just the one goal down.
The second half saw a change of formation for the Pesky Bulls and with it, a shift in urgency and impetus. Sean Myler was once again the driving force in midfield with Cables’ best moments flowing through him.
The home side managed to draw level on 57 minutes. MJ Monaghan drove into the box and was brought down by Louis Corrigan. James Edgar duly stepped up and smashed the ball into the roof of the ‘Purps’ net.
Josh Klein-Davies was introduced on the hour mark and had an immediate impact upon the game as he linked up with Lloyd Dean and Matty Hamilton. Hamilton gave Cables an unlikely lead on 72 minutes, his free kick taking a slight deflection on its way in.
That advantage would last just three minutes. A direct ball over the top split both centre halves and found the onrushing Allen in “no man’s land” as Jamie McDonald lobbed the ball over the Cables ‘keeper into the net.
That equaliser set up a frenetic final 15 minutes of the game in which both sides had chances to get a winner. Cables might have scored through Klein-Davies and Dean and then the visitors could have snatched it in the final minute but for Allen’s fine save with his legs following a defensive error that saw captain James McCulloch dispossessed inside the area.
As it was both sides were left frustrated that they were unable to take all three points.
Cables XI: Allen, Hamiliton, Edgar, O Fleming, McCulloch, Cooper, Myler, Monaghan, McMilan (White 76), Rainford (Klein-Davies 60), Dean
Man of the Match: Sean Myler. On an evening where few Cables players stood out, particularly in the first half, Myler was picked out by the management team as the driving force behind Cables’ revival in the second half.