Morecambe settle for a point after they fail to take advantage of Ayunga’s double at Accrington

The Shrimps let a two-goal lead slip but picked up another important point in a 2-2 draw in the Lancashire derby at the Wham Stadium.

By Derek Quinn
Saturday, 29th January 2022, 8:13 pm

Stephen Robinson’s side went two goals up with a double from Jonah Ayunga in the first 25 minutes, only to be pegged back by two Stanley set -piece goals before the end of the half from Colby Bishop and Michael Nottingham.

Robinson was forced to make one change to the starting line-up with Liam Gibson returning for Greg Leigh, who is away with the Jamaican national team.

In an action-packed first half the action swung from end to end with Ethan Hamilton heading an early corner wide for the home side, before Ayunga volleyed wide from the edge of the box after being found by the excellent Cole Stockton.

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Jonah Ayunga scored twice for Morecambe (Getty Images)

The next chance fell to Stanley with Sean McConville getting in behind the Morecambe defence but failing to find the target at full stretch.

The Shrimps hit back again when Stockton forced a save from Toby Slavin but the ball rebounded to Ayunga, whose low shot took a deflection off defender Ross Sykes to beat the home keeper.

Stanley looked for an immediate response with Ryan Cooney clearing a goalline scramble off the line but it was the Shrimps who struck again in the 26th minute.

Stockton was again involved as he won the ball in midfield and teed up Ayunga whose shot from the right-hand side of the box took a deflection as it beat Savin and found the bottom-left corner of his goal.

The Shrimps’ good start came to an end when Stanley used their height and strength at set-pieces to pull one back 10 minutes before the break.

McConville swung in another dangerous corner and Bishop headed home from close range as Carson looked to be impeded by former Shrimps’ winger John O’Sullivan.

With seconds of the half remaining Stanley scored a second.

After Cooney was harshly adjudged to have given away a free-kick, McConville again provided a killer ball for Michael Nottingham to beat Carson and head into the empty goal from close range.

The second half saw both teams push for a third.

Stockton was the first to try his luck on 53 minutes when he produced a superb turn and shot on the edge of the area and forced a flying save from Savin.

Six minutes later Stockton had another sight of goal but pulled a right-foot shot just wide from the edge of the area with the home keeper stranded.

Stanley hit back with Ethan Hamilton forcing Carson into a save low to his left and the same player also went close with an effort from just outside the area.

The final minute of the game saw the Shrimps almost snatch a dramatic winner.

Substitute Adam Phillips drove into the box and 
drilled in a low cross which Ayunga almost deflected 
over the goal line but the ball stayed out as both teams had to settle for a hard earned point.

Accrington: Savin, Hamilton, Sykes, Butcher, O’Sullivan, Pell, Bishop (Rich-Baghuelou 46), McConville, Nottingham, Clark, Amankwah. Subs not used: Isherwood, Rodgers, Mansell, Longelo, Nolan, Morgan.

Morecambe: Carson, O’Connor, Bedeau, Diagouraga, Stockton, Wildig (Phillips 63), Ayunga, McLoughlin, Cooney, Gibson (Bennett 28), Gnahoua. Subs not used: Letheren, Obika, Mensah, Fane, Duffus.

Referee: S Purkiss.

Attendance: 3,527.