Posh v Workington Town 18 Mar 61

Venue: London Road, Peterborough

Attendance: 11,888

Score: Peterborough Utd 2 v Workington Town 1

Referee: C. Rogers.

A narrow squeak for Posh…A lucky win…Yes, United had a bad day, but the only thing that will be remembered about this game is the fact that United took two more points and, thanks to Northampton’s victory at Crystal Palace, went to the top of the Fourth Division for the first time this year.

What a performance with which to take over the League leadership. United really disappointed their followers with this showing, but perhaps even prospective champions are entitled to an off day now and again.

It seemed, however, as if there were some underlying reason for United’s failure. Some players appeared to lack their usual enthusiasm for the game the “couldn’t care -less” attitude of one or two members of the team had its affect on others.

The defence dithered from the kick off and were at a loss how to handle the menace of tall attackers like centre forward Dixon and inside left Harburn. Both might have scored goals in the opening minutes, but failed to take advantage of their opportunities.

The United attack was disjointed and lacked the usual support of wing halves Jim Rayner and Keith Ripley.

Consequently it was not surprising when Workington took the lead after 31 minutes’ play in which they had held the upper hand for long periods.

Harburn crashed in a great shot on the run and Jack Walls did well to get his hands to the ball. He could not hold on to it, however, and it went back to Harburn who made no mistake with his second attempt.

The visitors almost increased their lead a minute or two later but Dixon’s rising shot struck the face of the crossbar and was scrambled away by the Posh defence.

As Workington piled on the pressure Posh right back Dick Whittaker did well to head the ball out from under the crossbar and Walls was very nearly bundled over the goal line by Dixon.

United came more into the game in the second half, but it was a great relief when Billy Hails got the equaliser after 57 minutes.

Billy cut in from his wing and put in a shot which rebounded from the goalkeeper. The United winger calmly followed up and slid the ball into the net with his left foot, it was a well taken goal.

This effort followed some good play by Jim Walker on the left wing. The full back brought the ball through and it was from his pass that the ball found its way to Hails.

After 72 minutes Ray Smith grabbed the points for Posh, with an opportunist goal. His first attempt was punched clear but he followed up and bustled the ball into the net.

Workington lost a lot of their fight in the closing stages of the game and United’s supporters breathed again. It was close…too close.

Teams:

Posh: Jack Walls, Dick Whittaker, Jim Walker, Jim Rayner, Norman Rigby, Keith Ripley, Billy Hails, Denis Emery, Terry Bly, Ray Smith and Peter McNamee.

Workington Town: Wright, Wilson, Brown, Hinchliffe, Tennant, Burkinshaw, Womack, Bradbury, Dixon, Harburn and Kirkup.

Goals: Posh – Billy Hails 57 mins and Ray Smith 72 mins. Workington – Harburn 31 mins.