Report: Carlisle United 3 Stevenage 0

Stevenage boss Graham Westley

Stevenage boss Graham Westley - Credit: Archant

Stevenage, with 55-year-old Dave Beasant on the bench, dropped to their lowest ever position as a Football League club with a second defeat in the space of a week.

Goals from Brad Potts, Steven Rigg and Mark Beck did the damage as Boro slumped to 19th in League 2. The lowest position the club had previously occupied since promotion from the Conference in 2010 was 18th in League 2 both in January 2011 and earlier this season.

The big team news of the day was that due to injuries, Beasant, the club’s goalkeeping coach, was on the substitute’s bench for Stevenage.

The former Chelsea and Wimbledon keeper hasn’t played for a professional team since Brighton in 2003, though he played non-league football for North Greenford United in the Southern Football League last year.

But while they had a 55-year-old on the bench, it was on the pitch that Boro were left creaking on their way to 19th in the league.

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They started well, for the first 10 minutes at least, but that was as good as it got for Graham Westley’s men.

Charlie Lee shot off target while Chris Whelpdale nodded over the bar, but on 17 minutes the home side took the lead when Boro conceded in similar circumstances to Luton Town’s winner last week.

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The ball was played out to Potts on the right, and he cut inside to hit his shot past Chris Day in the visitors’ goal.

Ten minutes later and Boro were two down – this time Rigg was the scorer, the Carlisle man converting from close range to make life a lot more difficult for Boro.

Westley had spoken midweek about this improving Carlisle side, and it is true that the hosts went into this match on the back of two successive wins in the league.

But based on results so far they are not one of the league’s better sides by any stretch of the imagination – not yet, anyway – and so a 2-0 deficit at the break will have left Boro disappointed.

By this time Stevenage had already replaced the injured Whelpdale with Ryan Johnson, but in the second half it was the same story for the visitors as Rigg’s deflected shot rolled just wide of the post while Dean Wells’ header from a Carlisle corner hit his own post.

There were chances for Boro as Bond stung the palms of Dan Hanford and Tom Pett fired over, but with two minutes of the game left, and to Stevenage’s chagrin, the home side got a third when Beck tapped in from close range to bring the curtains down on a solid display by the Cumbrians.

Carlisle Utd: Hanford, White, Archibald-Henville, Thirwell, Grainger, Dicker, Potts (Symington 86), Brough (Robson 70), Dempsey, Beck, Rigg (Elliott 75). Subs: Sweeney, Caig, O’Hanlon, Gillies.

Stevenage: Day, Henry, Wells, Charles, Deacon, Lee, Pett, Parrett, Bond (Calcutt 82), Whelpdale (Johnson 30), Beardsley (Ashton 65). Subs: D Beasant, Richens, Dembele, Conlon.

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