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24th July 2018, Runcorn Linnets FC v City of Liverpool FC : 3-2

Freddie Potter struck in the nick of time by completing his hat-trick with virtually the last final kick of Tuesday's Millbank Linnets Stadium friendly.

The Linnets' talismanic striker secured a deserved first win of pre-season for Michael Ellison's men, at the fourth attempt.

Having performed very creditably in defeats by successive National League North visitors, Chester and Ashton United, before earning a goalless draw on Saturday at Welsh Alliance outfit Rhyl, Linnets looked to have let this victory slip through their grasp.

In-form Potter had netted the first two goals of the contest to apparently put the newly-promoted EVO-STIK League West Division side in firm control.

But Runcorn reckoned without a determined comeback from their visitors and former Hallmark Security League Premier Division rivals, City of Liverpool.

CoL, preparing for the forthcoming campaign under new player-boss Craig Robinson, must have thought they had salvaged a draw.

Tom Peterson struck on the rebound after sub 'keeper Matt Holmes had saved well and then the Purps' former Runcorn Town centre half Danny Dalton appeared to get the decisive touch on a free-kick for the equaliser.

Between the comeback goals, in the 80th and 88th minutes, the Bootle-based side had seen another set-piece effort turned onto a post by Holmes.

With time almost up, however, Linnets full back Louis Corrigan advanced into the CoL box on the left and his endeavour was rewarded when Potter instinctively fired home the resulting cross.

Runcorn's line-up had more of a familiar feel and they had gone in front just before half-time.

A free-kick from close to the corner flag on the right was sent into a crowded box where Potter rose highest to head home at the near post.

The centre forward's second of the night, in the 64th minute, was a well-executed volley into the top left corner after a cross from the right.

A very good sign for Linnets was the return from injury of Aaron Morris, whose performance at the heart of defence was typically accomplished.

However, fellow centre back and Linnets' reigning Player of the Year, Jimmy Moore remains sidelined after going off hurt against Chester in Runcorn's opening friendly.

Runcorn Linnets: Dylan Forth, Louis Corrigan, Trialist A, Aaron Morris, Trialist B, Kieran Nolan, Kristian Holt, Paul Shanley (c), Freddie Potter, Trialist C, Mitch Bryant. Subs: Trialist D, Danny O'Brien, Kasie Jones, Chris Lawton, Trialist E, Matt Holmes.

Attendance: 229.



NB. The views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Runcorn Linnets FC or its Board.

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