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Player-boss praises character of his side after home success

Stamford Bels player-boss Lewis Morley praised the character of his charges after they defeated FC Peterborough on Saturday despite playing 80 minutes with 10 men.

They ran out 3-2 winners in the Peterborough League Division One contest following the early dismissal of teenager Luke Toomey.

Morley felt Toomey was harshly sent off for a deliberate hand-ball from a follow up after goalkeeper Keenan Murphy had saved a penalty.

Lewis Morley scored Bels' late winner. (5785686)
Lewis Morley scored Bels' late winner. (5785686)

He said: “It was a very soft penalty. Keenan made a superb save and they had another shot which hit Luke on the chest.

“It was a very bad decision to say it was hand ball. Luke was sent off and they scored the second penalty.

“Recently we have had some players leave the club and since then everyone has really dug in. Every week we fight for each other on the pitch which is a delight to see.

“Joe Morley and Ben Waldron were superb along with Reece Darby but, to play for 80 minutes with 10 men, showed real character from everyone involved.”

Bels had taken just five minutes to break the deadlock when Lewis Morley’s cross was flicked on by Luke Elsom to Scott Toomey who finished well.

After FC Peterborough had equalised from the spot kick incident that saw Luke Toomey sent off, Bels went back in front after 15 minutes.

Superb work from teenager Reece Darby played Scott Toomey in and he converted for his and Bels’ second goal of the afternoon.

The lead lasted just five minutes though as FC Peterborough drew level again when a long range effort zipped into the bottom corner.

The two sides went in at half-time all square at 2-2 with Bels having to shuffle their pack as Tyler Sculthorpe had to leave at the break which saw Joe Morley moved to centre-half alongside Waldron.

The impressive Waldron came close to putting Bels back in front when he delightfully picked a ball out of the air only for his shot to be cleared off the line.

Brad Freeman and Scott Toomey also had chances to win the game for Bels but were denied by the FC Peterborough keeper.

The Stamford side finally got the winner with 10 minutes remaining when the outstanding Joe Morley played a pinpoint pass to Lewis Morley who calmly brought the ball down and slotted home through the keeper’s legs to secure the victory for Bels.

Having won five and draw one of their last seven games, in-form Bels travel to third-placed Eye United on Saturday.

Stamford Bels Reserves recorded their fourth win in the last five Division Three games after a 5-2 away success at FC Peterborough’s second string on Saturday.

Bels had beaten their hosts 5-0 at the end of October, but faced a much tougher test against an improved Peterborough side on Saturday.

Both sides traded goals in the opening period with Stuart Airey and Alfie Winters on target for the visitors.

Teddy Paling then put Bels ahead just before half-time and they maintained that momentum in the second period.

Airey’s second goal of the afternoon and a cracking strike from Winters to complete his brace maintained Bels’ grip on fourth spot ahead of Saturday’s home clash with Long Sutton Reserves.

Bels Jono Greenwood said: “It was a real battle. They had improved their team and really made us work for the win.

“The effort from the lads was awesome and we did well to come through it.

“It will be a different ball game this weekend as Long Sutton beat us 6-3 earlier in the season so it’s the same sort of fixture as when we beat Thorpe Wood a fortnight ago.”

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