West Didsbury & Chorlton 2 V 3 1874 Northwich – NWCFL Premier 31st August
1874 started this Bank Holiday Monday fixture with goal keeper, Tom Hunt, making his debut in goal for the injured Matt Conkie whilst Danny Shannon came into the team on the right hand side of a strong looking midfield.
1874 started the game in the ascendency and nearly opened the scoring as early as the third minute when, after good play by Kirk and James the final ball into the box aimed for Brandon appeared to be handled by a home defender but 1874’s strong claims for a penalty were waved away by the referee.
However the first goal did arrive soon after and, once again, James was involved in the build up as he combined well with Brandon before seeing his excellent cross result in a corner from which Mitchell won the header that was cleared but only into the path of Brandon who netted with ease in the 14th minute.
1874 continued to look dangerous on both flanks as Connor and James linked up regularly with Hill and Shannon and both wide men showed their ability to deliver good crosses on a frequent basis.
It was certainly not one way traffic though as West’s threatened the 1874 defence on a good few occasions but came up against the strong centre back partnership of Thomas and Mitchell who dealt comfortably with what was thrown at them.
Brandon seemed to be enjoying his afternoon and he was certainly proving a handful for the Wests defence and after 23 minutes the accomplished striker once again showed his ability to get involved with good link up play and this time it was with Hill on the right who delivered a perfect cross into the path of Chappell who advanced a few yards before unleashing an unstoppable shot into the top corner from 12 yards out to increase the lead.
The two-nil score line at this point did not flatter 1874 and indeed they didn’t relax as they went looking for more goals and in the 32nd minute their third goal arrived after Ryan Mitchell (who has been making a nice habit of doing this!) went forward for a corner, won it and headed the ball across the area for Brandon to score his second of the afternoon.
Just before the half-time whistle Brandon almost scored his third when he met a long inch-perfect cross from Thomas but his header went just over the bar. The final action of a good half for 1874 saw Hunt make his second good save of the afternoon to maintain the three goals advantage. H-T 0-3
Most of the healthy attendance of 229 might well have expected to see more goals scored in the second half and so it proved but not many would have thought that the goals would be into the same net as those scored in the opening half!
But the home side started the second half in a more determined mood and in a sense were helped at first by a few defensive errors from 1874 and from one the defenders were indebted to Hunt who came out well to dive at an onrushing forward’s feet to save well.
There was a good period of play for about 15 minutes with possession switching between both sides and the best goal scoring opportunity fell to the home side but Paul Connor, backtracking well, had other ideas and his intervention averted the danger.
But just past the hour mark (62 minutes) West’s were back in the game when Jordan Poole slotted home a penalty which was rightly awarded after a mistimed tackle by an 1874 defender. Two minutes later and Wests missed a golden opportunity to reduce the deficit again but Poizer shot high and wide when well placed.
Wests were enjoying their best period of the game and they missed another chance to score when, after forcing two quick corners Jones somehow managed to hit the ball over the bar from just two yards out!
1874 were still trying to get the ball forward in an attempt to take the game away from their hosts but back Wests came and in the 76th minute they scored a second goal when their full back – Jones – cut in before seemingly toe-poking the ball into the top corner from 12 yards out.
A few minutes later and the game was suddenly “ten a side” rather that eleven when 1874’s keeper handled the ball outside the area and was shown a red card whilst a home player lost his composure and was also shown red for his troubles. Captain Chappell took on the “gloves role” for 1874 and showed that he has a good pair of hands as he safely helped to see his side home for the three points.
No doubt some 1874 supporters will have left the ground shaking their heads and wondering “what went wrong” but they would do well to remember that the players are always as disappointing as supporters are when things go awry – but with another three points in the bag to maintain the unbeaten league campaign that sees 1874 climb to second place in the table is surely rich compensation for the slight disappointment of today’s second half performance
1874: Hunt; Connor; Mitchell; Thomas; James; Hill; Chappell, Kirk; Woolley; Brandon and Shannon. Substitutes Ledwards (replaced James 66 minutes); Stewart (replaced Shannon 87 minutes) Unused Substitutes: Beadle; McNichol and Ward
Referee: Mark Brown Attendance 229
|Mon 31 Aug 2015||3:00 pm||NWCFL Premier Division||2015/16|
|The Recreation Ground|
|21 Meadow Bank, Manchester M21 8EF, UK|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals|
|West Didsbury & Chorlton||0||2||2|
|#||Player||Yellow Cards||Red Cards||Goals|
|1||Tom Hunt||0||1 (81')||0|
|3||Louis James 16||0||0||0|
|6||Neil Chappell||0||0||1 (24')|
|9||Mike Brandon||0||0||2 (14', 32')|
|11||Daniel Shannon 17||0||0||0|
|16||Elliot Ledwards 3||0||0||0|
|17||Ryan Stewart 11||0||0||0|